Research Output
A simulator for teaching computer architecture
  This paper describes the specification, implementation and use of a computer system simulator. The simulator project was begun as a result of teaching a second year undergraduate course in computer systems.It became apparent that students only fully appreciate the differences in computer architecture when they are able to have "hands on" experience. This simulator, which operates at the register transfer level, allows students to gain experience of many different architectures without recourse to many different computers. This experience, in the first instance, is gained by the students being able to run programs on the simulated computers and then investigating the state of the computer after each machine or micro instruction. The design of these teaching computers is chosen so that they demonstrate a particular architectural detail. Subsequently students can design their own computer systems and compare them with simulations of commercially available computers.

  • Type:


  • Date:

    01 July 1980

  • Publication Status:


  • Publisher

    Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

  • DOI:


  • ISSN:


  • Library of Congress:

    QA76 Computer software

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    005 Computer programming, programs & data

  • Funders:

    Historic Funder (pre-Worktribe)


Kerridge, J. M., & Willis, N. (1980). A simulator for teaching computer architecture. Sigcse Bulletin, 12(2), 65-71.



Programs; micro instruction; computer systems.

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