Warwick/Coventry, United Kingdom

Computational Modelling For All

when 18 July 2021 - 7 August 2021
language English
duration 3 weeks
credits 7.5 EC
fee GBP 2070

Computer science provides tools that help us understand and benefit from the world around us. The ability to take information, understand it, process it, extract value from it, visualise it, and communicate it is a hugely important skill.

Computational modelling provides us with a powerful toolkit to help us understand, explore, communicate and make sense of data, processes and systems. The applications are all around us: from understanding and predicting economic and political systems, to forecasting the weather and climate, or discovering physical, biological and chemical truths without expensive or impossible experiments.

Computational models can be used to shed light on systems that are very complex, but creating such complex models from scratch, and sharing data and results with others, could be an almost impossible task. Fortunately, there are many tools that bring the power of modelling and simulation to anyone.

This course is a study of the basic tools required to examine processes that occur in the real world and write code to simulate that occurrence. We will be using the processing programming environment to create visual models that provide us with a ‘laboratory’ where we can conduct experiments which would be impossible or too expensive to do in real life. We also learn how the basis of data analytics, and how to share data using standard popular notations and produce effective visualisations of data.

Course leader

Dr Sara Kalvala, University of Warwick

Target group

Anyone aged 18+ including UG and PG students

Course aim

The foundation of the course is the concept of simulation of dynamic systems. We will cover some of the mathematical foundations, and discuss the use of Differential Equations, Partial Differential Equations, and Stochastic Methods to capture different kinds of systems. The Computer Science foundation is the concept of a Multi-Agent System (or MAS) which provides a structure in which examples from diverse fields such as biology, economics, and games can be expressed.

Practical experience will be provided with the introduction of libraries and programming environments that are accessible without previous experience of programming. Students will be guided through example applications and encouraged to apply the methodologies to new domains.

Processing is a user-friendly, freely available software package that is used to build simple models with very little previous programming experience, but powerful enough that quite complex case studies can be implemented to produce insights into a variety of domains. It can be seen as a portal into learning how to program, and comes in two flavours: Java and Python.

Credits info

7.5 EC
You must check with the relevant office of your institution if you will be awarded credit, but many institutions will allow this. In general, you’ll earn 3 credits in the US system, and 7.5 ECTS in the European system. Warwick will provide any necessary supporting evidence to help evaluate the worth of the course.

Fee info

GBP 2070: Tuition fee (includes a 10% early booking discount, social programme and guest lecture series)