Modeling Process Check Sheet

Prepared by:

Joseph Malkevitch
Department of Mathematics
York College (CUNY)
Jamaica, New York 11451


web page:

1. Have a clear understanding of the situation you are trying to model.

2. What question(s) are you trying to answer or get insight into?

3. List as many of the aspects of the situation which affect giving an answer to the questions you want to obtain insight about as you can. (List the complexities of the situation to be studied in detail.)

4. What data do you have or can you obtain about the situation?

5. Think about what mathematical tools might provide insight into the situation you wish to study. (Equations, matrices, graph theory, statistics, probability, optimization techniques, etc.)

6. Make a careful list of simplifying assumptions about the situation which you are trying to study.

7. Construct your mathematical model.

8. Attempt to solve the mathematical questions of interest within the model.

9. Does your solution within the model give insight into the situation you are studying?

10. How can your model be modified to get more insight?

11. List situations similar to the one you are trying to investigate and compare and contrast how they differ from the situation you constructed a model for. Does your solution to the model for the situation you studied give insight into these other problems? How would you have to modify your model to get better insight into these "nearby" situations?

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