The approach presented in this article represents a generalizable and adaptable methodology for identifying complex interactions in educational systems and for investigating how manipulation of these systems may affect educational outcomes of interest. Multilayer Minimum Spanning Tree and Monte-Carlo methods are used. A virtual Sandbox University is created in order to facilitate effective identification of successful and stable initiatives within higher education, which can affect students' credits and student retention - something that has been lacking up until now. The results highlight the importance of teacher feedback and teacher-student rapport, which is congruent with current educational findings, illustrating the methodology's potential to provide a new basis for further empirical studies of issues in higher education from a complex systems perspective. © 2014 Forsman et al.
Forsman, J., Mann, R. P., Linder, C., & Van Den Bogaard, M. (2014). Sandbox university: Estimating influence of institutional action. PLoS ONE, 9(7). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0103261