Abstract for: Automating the comparison of mental models of dynamical systems
The comparison of mental models of dynamical systems can help understanding they way individuals understand dynamic situations and how their understanding changes. Current approaches like the Distance Ratio and the Closeness Ratio have been criticized for not taking into account feedback loops and delays; an improved comparison method has been proposed, specifying an Element Distance Ratio, Loop Distance Ratios and a Model Distance Ratio. We are advancing in the automation of the computations in order to take this burden away from analysts. This paper describes the essential computations. It briefly presents the comparison method for the different ratios. Then it introduces the conceptual architecture of the software tool, its main data structures and algorithms. The tool shall be put to use in mental model research.