Educational Simulations in the Domain of Management


A model with two event types (CustomerArrival and CustomerDeparture) and two object types (ServiceDesk and Customer). The waiting line is explicitly represented as a queue of individual customer objects.


This minimal Activity Network model consists of two nodes: an initial event node for recurrent "CustomerArrival" events and an activity node for "Service" activities, which require a service desk as a (performer) resource.


This minimal Processing Network model consists of three nodes: an entry node where customers arrive, a processing node where service activities are performed on customers, and an exit node where customers depart. These nodes are connected with processing flow arrows combining event/activity scheduling with object flow.


A model with two event types (DailyDemand and Delivery) and one object type (SingleProductShop). This example also offers two parameter variation experiments.


A model with three event types (PartArrival, ProcessingStart and ProcessingEnd) and one object type (WorkStation).


An Activity Network with a single activity node representing a single server queuing system model consisting of the object type WorkStation, the event type PartArrival, and the resource-constrained activity type Processing, which has the resource role workStation expressing that a Processing activity requires a workstation as a resource.

Drive Thru

The order processing activities of a drive through restaurant are performed at three service points with queues: the order taking at the menu board, the order preparation at the kitchen and the order pickup at the pickup window.


An activity network model consisting of the object types "OrderTaker" and "PizzaMaker", the event type "OrderCall", and the activity types "TakeOrder", "MakePizza" and "DeliverPizza".


A haul service company has resource pools for dump trucks and wheel loaders. While the activities go to loading site, haul, dump, go back to loading site and go home just require a truck (or a wheel loader) as a resource, load activities require both a truck and a wheel loader.


In a forklift transport operation, incoming products of different types are hauled from an arrival area to a destination area. There are different types of operators and each of them can only handle specific types of forklifts, which, in turn, can only transport specific types of products.


In this model, which is based on Forklift-Transport-1, the Drive FL home and Walk back home activities can be preempted when a new product arrives and no suitable forklift/operator combination is available.


This model includes two activity types: WalkToRoom activities require a room and are performed by a nurse, while Examination activities also require a room and are performed by a doctor. The resource pools nurses and doctors are modeled as individual resource pools, while the resource pool rooms, which is used by both WalkToRoom and Examination activities, is modeled as a count pool.


A diagnostic department of a hospital performs electrocardiography (ECG) and ultrasound scans (US). This Processing Network model consists of the resource object types "EcgTechnician" and "Doctor", the entry node "patientEntry", the processing nodes "ecgSpot/PerformECG" and "usBed/PerformUsScan", and an exit node.


  1. In Improving Undergraduate Student Performance on the Littlefield Simulation, Maureen P. Lojo (2016) reports on the results of an experiment to improve the performance of undergraduate business students on the team-based Littlefield simulation.
  2. In Lessons Learned from Implementing Web-Based Simulations to Teach Operations Management Concepts, Brent Snider and Jaydeep Balakrishnan (2013) provide five keys for implementing the Littlefield simulation and guidance on administering computer-based simulations in general.
  3. In Web-based Simulations for Teaching Queueing, Little's Law, and Inventory Management, Gregory Dobson and Robert Shumsky (2006) describe three web-based simulations that help to teach concepts related to process flow and variability.
  4. In Rolling the Dice on Global Supply Chain Sustainability: A Total Cost of Ownership Simulation, Rosanna Cole and Brent Snider (2020) describe a dice-based classroom simulation, which exposes students to supply chain sustainability, total cost of ownership (TCO), and risk management.