This mobile-friendly computational model lets students explore resistance in a wire. You can change the values for resistivity, length of the wire, and cross-sectional area of the wire to see how each variable affects resistance. In addition, learners will form a deeper understanding of the difference between resistance and resistivity. Written in HTML5

This item is part of a larger collection of materials developed and maintained by the Physics Education Technology project (PhET) based on principles of physics education research.

The structure and interactions of matter at the bulk scale are determined by electrical forces within and between atoms. (9-12)

Types of Interactions (PS2.B)

Attraction and repulsion between electric charges at the atomic scale explain the structure, properties, and transformations of matter, as well as the contact forces between material objects. (9-12)

Crosscutting Concepts (K-12)

Scale, Proportion, and Quantity (3-12)

Algebraic thinking is used to examine scientific data and predict the effect of a change in one variable on another (e.g., linear growth vs. exponential growth). (9-12)

Structure and Function (K-12)

The functions and properties of natural and designed objects and systems can be inferred from their overall structure, the way their components are shaped and used, and the molecular substructures of its various materials. (9-12)

NGSS Science and Engineering Practices (K-12)

Analyzing and Interpreting Data (K-12)

Analyzing data in 9–12 builds on K–8 and progresses to introducing more detailed statistical analysis, the comparison of data sets for consistency, and the use of models to generate and analyze data. (9-12)

Analyze data using computational models in order to make valid and reliable scientific claims. (9-12)

Using Mathematics and Computational Thinking (5-12)

Mathematical and computational thinking at the 9–12 level builds on K–8 and progresses to using algebraic thinking and analysis, a range of linear and nonlinear functions including trigonometric functions, exponentials and logarithms, and computational tools for statistical analysis to analyze, represent, and model data. Simple computational simulations are created and used based on mathematical models of basic assumptions. (9-12)

Use mathematical representations of phenomena or design solutions to describe and/or support claims and/or explanations. (9-12)

AAAS Benchmark Alignments (2008 Version)

2. The Nature of Mathematics

2A. Patterns and Relationships

9-12: 2A/H1. Mathematics is the study of quantities and shapes, the patterns and relationships between quantities or shapes, and operations on either quantities or shapes. Some of these relationships involve natural phenomena, while others deal with abstractions not tied to the physical world.

2B. Mathematics, Science, and Technology

9-12: 2B/H3. Mathematics provides a precise language to describe objects and events and the relationships among them. In addition, mathematics provides tools for solving problems, analyzing data, and making logical arguments.

9. The Mathematical World

9B. Symbolic Relationships

9-12: 9B/H2a. Symbolic statements can be manipulated by rules of mathematical logic to produce other statements of the same relationship, which may show some interesting aspect more clearly.

12. Habits of Mind

12B. Computation and Estimation

9-12: 12B/H2. Find answers to real-world problems by substituting numerical values in simple algebraic formulas and check the answer by reviewing the steps of the calculation and by judging whether the answer is reasonable.

Common Core State Standards for Mathematics Alignments

Standards for Mathematical Practice (K-12)

MP.2 Reason abstractly and quantitatively.

High School — Algebra (9-12)

Seeing Structure in Expressions (9-12)

A-SSE.2 Use the structure of an expression to identify ways to rewrite it.

Creating Equations^{?} (9-12)

A-CED.4 Rearrange formulas to highlight a quantity of interest, using the same reasoning as in solving equations.

PhET. PhET: Resistance in a Wire. Boulder: PhET, October 31, 2015. https://phet.colorado.edu/en/simulation/resistance-in-a-wire (accessed 10 June 2023).

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