Changing mental models: Business simulation exercises

Christopher M. Scherpereel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


The effectiveness of business simulation exercises in uncovering the interconnectedness of business decisions has been explored in the literature. Little research has been done, however to quantify empirically how simply identifying connections can change the decision maker's perceptions and actions. This research exposes the process by which business simulations bring about these changes. Using the semantic differential technique and a one-group pretest-posttest design, tests are conducted to assess perceptual changes in problem characterization and approach induced by participation in a business simulation exercise. The results presented provide quantifiable justification for the use of business simulation exercises to induce targeted change in a decision maker's mental models. In addition, business simulation designers are offered a powerful feedback tool that allows them to customize decision parameters and confirm the desired participant impact has been achieved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)388-403
Number of pages16
JournalSimulation and Gaming
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2005


  • Business simulation
  • Decision making
  • Empirical research
  • Measurement
  • Mental models
  • Perceptions
  • Semantic differential
  • Simulation design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
  • Computer Science Applications


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