The simulation is highly versatile. It permits the construction of a wide range of circuit examples. Batteries can be ideal (Rint = 0) or real, with the value of internal resistance under user control. Wire segments can also be ideal or have their own resistance. An option to display the equations that describe the circuit is also available. This simulation can be used in virtual laboratory experiments, or to check results from homework problems. It has the potential to not only measure the students knowledge of Ohms Law and Kirchoffs rules, but also their ability to create electric circuits.
The authors have assessed the impact of using this simulation on student learning, with positive results. The studies are available on the PHET web site.