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GPIS Concentration:Modeling & Simulation

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Participants gather for a group photo at the ODU Graduate Program in International Studies’ Annual Graduate Research Conference. College of Arts and Letters

Modeling & Simulation Field Seminars

  • Students selecting this field as their major or minor must take MSIM 601 (or MSIM 602) and IS 620 as their required field courses.
  • M.A. students must select TWO more courses within the field.
  • Ph.D. students with a major concentration in modeling and simulation must choose THREE more courses.
  • Ph.D students with a minor concentration in modeling and simulation must choose at least TWO more courses.
  • Students are advised to select courses in consultation with the field coordinator as the goal is to build a coherent body of knowledge and modeling competencies. In most cases students should choose courses that align with a primary focus on either simulation and formal modeling on the one hand, or data science and statistical modeling on the other.
  • Students are also advised that they have the opportunity to enrich their classroom experience through Independent Study/Directed Research projects with the agreement of the field coordinator.

Field Seminars

Core Courses

MSIM 601* Fundamentals of Modeling and Simulation

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Modeling and simulation (M&S) discipline surveyed at an overview level of detail. Basic terminology, modeling methods, and simulation paradigms are introduced. May substitute MSIM 602.

IS 620* Advanced Statistical Techniques

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Multivariate regression, causal analysis, and advanced statistical applications.

Simulation & Formal Modeling Courses

IS 762/862 Game Theory

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Game theory uses mathematical models, empirical investigation, and simulations in an effort to explain simple and complex strategic interactions among individuals, states, groups, and species. This course teaches the tools of game theory, with a focus on applications in international relations and political science.

IS 765/865 Agent Based Modeling or BNAL 722/822 Agent-based Simulation Modeling

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. An introduction to complex systems theory and to the application of agent-based modeling technologies to a variety of social systems.

IS 772/872 or MSIM 772/872 Modeling Global Events

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. This course introduces modeling and simulation as a tool for expanding one's understanding of events that have shaped the global environment of the 21st century. The course will first provide a broad look at international politics through a review of select international incidents, military interventions, and homeland security issues. Second, select topics from these categories will serve as case studies to facilitate representing those events with the application of modeling, simulation, and visualization. Understanding how modeling and simulation can provide another method of analysis allows students to delve deeper into their understanding of "what happened" and to explore their conception of "what if."

Data Science & Statistical Modeling Courses

STAT 625 / STAT 626 Mathematical Statistics

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Topics include axiomatic foundations of probability, conditional probability, Bayes formula, random variables, density and mass functions, stochastic independence, expectation, moment generating functions, transformations, common families of distributions, multiple random variables, covariance and correlation, multivariate distributions, convergence concepts, law of large numbers, limit theorems, multivariate regression models.

STAT 640 Survival Analysis.

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Basic concepts and methods for analyzing survival time data obtained from following individuals until the occurrence of an event or their loss to follow-up. It will cover nonparametric, semi-parametric, and parametric models and two-sample test techniques. It will demonstrate mathematical and graphical methods for evaluating the goodness of fit and introduce the concept of dependent censoring/competing risk.

ENMA 754/854 Big Data Fundamentals

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. The objectives of the course are to provide fundamental knowledge and skills of Big Data for the new generation of researchers, engineers, project managers and business managers in the emerging data-driven science and engineering paradigm. Topics to be covered include data analytics, cloud platforms and tools for Big Data, and innovative applications of Big Data.

PSYC 736/836 Multilevel Models HLM

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Social science data frequently have a hierarchical or multilevel structure as a consequence of sampling designs or repeated measures. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to the basic principles and applications of hierarchical linear modeling in social science research. Topics covered include an introduction to multilevel analyses, random intercept models, random slope models, hypotheses testing, hierarchical models for limited dependent variables, model fitting, three-level models, and repeated-measures applications.

Instructional Simulation & Applied Modeling & Simulation Courses

IDT 755/855 Theory and Design of Instructional Simulation and/or IDT 756/856 Instructional Gaming: Theories and Practice.

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. This course focuses on learning theory, design and evaluation of instructional simulations and simulators. Topics include history, instructional design, validation, and integration of instructional simulations.

ENMA 712/812 Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis & Support

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis and Decision Support Systems. Currently, complex engineering-economic-societal decisions are made by involving numerous sometimes conflicting criteria and attributes, different decision rules and in the presence of various stakeholders with individual preferences who are willing to go into negotiation procedures. A number of multi-criteria decision tools involving quantitative as well as qualitative methods, together with adequate decision support tools will be introduced. Case studies on a variety of engineering, environmental and security related aspects will also be considered.

*Core Seminar

With the approval of the instructor and the concentration coordinator, students may count other courses towards the field requirements if the semester research paper has a modeling and simulation focus, broadly defined, and/or the course teaches modeling and simulation tools and applications broadly defined.


Certificate in Modeling & Simulation

Description

Over the past several years, GPIS has added faculty with expertise in this area, and has received significant external funding for modeling and simulation projects. A number of connections have been built between GPIS and the Virginia Modeling, Analysis, and Simulation Center. The M&S in international studies concentration could be pursued by students in several ways, which are outlined below. In each case, courses would be selected in close consultation with the M&S track coordinator. Modeling and simulation in the social sciences generally, and in international studies particularly, takes several different forms. The most prominent of these are:

  • Statistical modeling
  • Formal modeling/game theory
  • Simulation/agent-based modeling
  • Geographic/spatial modeling
  • Network analysis
  • Event simulation exercises

Requirements

M&S Certificate (4 courses)

Any student who would like to get a certificate in M&S will need four courses from the course list below. This includes the MSIM core courses. The certificate can be pursued regardless of a student's field of concentration, although for PhD students this would require additional coursework beyond the usual thirty credit hours of post-master's work.


Field Seminars

Core Courses

MSIM 601* Fundamentals of Modeling and Simulation

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Modeling and simulation (M&S) discipline surveyed at an overview level of detail. Basic terminology, modeling methods, and simulation paradigms are introduced. May substitute MSIM 602.

IS 620* Advanced Statistical Techniques

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Multivariate regression, causal analysis, and advanced statistical applications.

Simulation & Formal Modeling Courses

IS 762/862 Game Theory

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Game theory uses mathematical models, empirical investigation, and simulations in an effort to explain simple and complex strategic interactions among individuals, states, groups, and species. This course teaches the tools of game theory, with a focus on applications in international relations and political science.

IS 765/865 Agent Based Modeling or BNAL 722/822 Agent-based Simulation Modeling

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. An introduction to complex systems theory and to the application of agent-based modeling technologies to a variety of social systems.

IS 772/872 or MSIM 772/872 Modeling Global Events

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. This course introduces modeling and simulation as a tool for expanding one's understanding of events that have shaped the global environment of the 21st century. The course will first provide a broad look at international politics through a review of select international incidents, military interventions, and homeland security issues. Second, select topics from these categories will serve as case studies to facilitate representing those events with the application of modeling, simulation, and visualization. Understanding how modeling and simulation can provide another method of analysis allows students to delve deeper into their understanding of "what happened" and to explore their conception of "what if."

Data Science & Statistical Modeling Courses

STAT 625 / STAT 626 Mathematical Statistics

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Topics include axiomatic foundations of probability, conditional probability, Bayes formula, random variables, density and mass functions, stochastic independence, expectation, moment generating functions, transformations, common families of distributions, multiple random variables, covariance and correlation, multivariate distributions, convergence concepts, law of large numbers, limit theorems, multivariate regression models.

STAT 640 Survival Analysis.

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. Basic concepts and methods for analyzing survival time data obtained from following individuals until the occurrence of an event or their loss to follow-up. It will cover nonparametric, semi-parametric, and parametric models and two-sample test techniques. It will demonstrate mathematical and graphical methods for evaluating the goodness of fit and introduce the concept of dependent censoring/competing risk.

ENMA 754/854 Big Data Fundamentals

Lecture, 3 hours; 3 credits. The objectives of the course are to provide fundamental knowledge and skills of Big Data for the new generation of researchers, engineers, project managers and business managers in the emerging data-driven science and engineering paradigm. Topics to be covered include data analytics, cloud platforms and tools for Big Data, and innovative applications of Big Data.

PSYC 736/836 Multilevel Models HLM

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Social science data frequently have a hierarchical or multilevel structure as a consequence of sampling designs or repeated measures. The purpose of the course is to introduce students to the basic principles and applications of hierarchical linear modeling in social science research. Topics covered include an introduction to multilevel analyses, random intercept models, random slope models, hypotheses testing, hierarchical models for limited dependent variables, model fitting, three-level models, and repeated-measures applications.

Instructional Simulation & Applied Modeling & Simulation Courses

IDT 755/855 Theory and Design of Instructional Simulation and/or IDT 756/856 Instructional Gaming: Theories and Practice.

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. This course focuses on learning theory, design and evaluation of instructional simulations and simulators. Topics include history, instructional design, validation, and integration of instructional simulations.

ENMA 712/812 Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis & Support

Seminar, 3 hours; 3 credits. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis and Decision Support Systems. Currently, complex engineering-economic-societal decisions are made by involving numerous sometimes conflicting criteria and attributes, different decision rules and in the presence of various stakeholders with individual preferences who are willing to go into negotiation procedures. A number of multi-criteria decision tools involving quantitative as well as qualitative methods, together with adequate decision support tools will be introduced. Case studies on a variety of engineering, environmental and security related aspects will also be considered.

*Core Seminar

With the approval of the instructor and the concentration coordinator, students may count other courses towards the certificate requirements if the semester research paper has a modeling and simulation focus, and/or the course teaches modeling and simulation tools and applications.