Nowadays, the use of information technology (ICT) in education is nothing new. But the question is where the limit is when the use of ICT does not have the desired effect.
In the paper we discuss the use of simulations in the teaching process that can positively influence students' achievements. At the beginning of the paper we present the results of a research aimed at exploring the impact of the use of computer simulations on secondary school students' understanding of oscillatory motion. The aim of the research was to explore the effect of the use of simulations on students' abilities to work with graphs and to find out relevant information. In the conclusion, the possibilities of integration of simulations into the teaching process are discussed.
Computer simulations seem to be one of the most effective ways to use computers in physics education. They encourage students to carry out the processes used in physics research: to question, predict, hypothesise, observe, interpret results etc. Their effective use requires an availability of appropriate teaching resources fitting secondary schools curricula.
This paper presents a set of computer simulations that cover the curriculum area of Mechanics and are designed to fit directly to curricula and textbooks used at Slovak grammar schools. All simulations are accompanied by brief instructions for teachers, including suggestions for learning activities and problem tasks for students. Some of them are designed as virtual laboratories.
The developed simulations were tested with a group of secondary school students and evaluated also by groups of future and practising physics teachers. The paper presents and discusses findings and conclusions from the both runs of the testing.