We are Project GUTS

Project GUTS — Growing Up Thinking Scientifically — is an integrated science and computer science program for middle school students serving schools and districts internationally. Growing up thinking scientifically means learning to look at the world and to ask questions, developing and using computer models that help answer questions through scientific inquiry, and using critical thinking to assess which ideas are reasonable and which are not. To grow up thinking scientifically means knowing science to be a computing-rich, dynamic, creative endeavor, a way of thinking, rather than a body of facts.


Our Mission

Project GUTS’ mission is to prepare students for future endeavors in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Computing by providing them with opportunities to build scientific inquiry skills and use technology to explore real-world problems. Project GUTS was designed for students from all different backgrounds to engage in scientific inquiry by investigating topics of interest to their local communities and sharing their experiments and findings in order to inform fellow students and community members.


Our Approach

  • Attract students by making science and computing relevant and dynamic,
  • Prepare students for future endeavors in STEM and computing fields,
  • Retain student interest by offering open ended challenges,
  • Assess how teachers’ participation in Project GUTS impacts how they think about and teach STEM and computing in the classrooms, and
  • Enhance existing partnerships for program sustainability

The organizing framework for Project GUTS is the practice of scientific inquiry with agent-based models. The study of complex adaptive systems serves as a unifying theme for GUTS curriculum. Peer mentoring and community networks serve as project components designed to support students and teachers committed to teaching modern, computer-enabled scientific practices.

Making agent based modeling in StarLogo is an extension of programming in Logo – instead of having only one turtle in Logo, agent based models have many turtles!  These turtles can represent chemical compounds, people, animals, or even ideas. Collections of turtles are used to model complex adaptive systems made up of many parts.


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