Exploring the Value of Simulations in Plant Health in the Developing World
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There is a growing opportunity to deliver mobile technology-based training on the diagnosis of plant health problems and to explore experiential learning through simulation in the developing world. Solving knowledge problems in plant health en masse would have a vast impact on global food security. “Plant Doctor Simulator” is an android tablet-mounted 3D modelling simulation to enhance and measure the diagnostic skills of plant health workers. The 3D models simulate symptoms of plant pest and disease problems on a variety of crop plants, and the game play data is stored in a web portal for analysis. Early stage testing results indicate that plant health advisors in the developing world are receptive to tablet-based simulation as part of a learning and teaching program. When evaluated as a diagnostic competency assessment tool, performance in Plant Doctor Simulator was found to be correlated to performance on a traditional written exam; however, further study is required to better understand the reliability and validity of the tool. Learning effects of the simulation are not yet conclusively investigated.
KeywordsSimulation Plant health Extension Diagnosis Competency Assessment
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