Dimensions of dificulty

To remember for my poor memory:

Why this table is relevant?

When you are explaining complex models or concepts, it is interesting to divide the explanation of complex going from simple situations to a more complex ones. These degrees of difficulty can happen in many perspectives, and the table contains different view that could be use to teaching purposes.

Comparisons Description
Static versus dynamic– Are important aspects of a situation captured by a fixed “snapshot,” or are the critical characteristics captured only by the changes from frame to frame?
– Are phenomena static and scalar, or do they possess dynamic vector characteristics?
Discrete versus continuous– Do processes proceed in discernible steps, or are they unbreakable continua?
– Are attributes describable by a small number of categories (e.g., dichotomous classifications like large/small), or is it necessary to recognize and utilize entire continuous dimensions (e.g., the full dimension of size) or large numbers of categorical distinctions?
Separable versus interactiveDo processes occur independently or with only weak interaction, or is there strong interaction and interdependence?
Sequential versus simultaneousDo processes occur one at a time, or do multiple processes occur at the same time?
Homogeneous versus heterogeneousAre components or explanatory schemes uniform (or similar) across a system or are they diverse?
Single versus multiple representations– Do elements in a situation afford single (or just a few) interpretations, functional uses, categorizations, and so on, or do they afford many?
– Are multiple representations (e.g., multiple perspectives, schemas, analogies, case precedents, etc) required to capture and convey the meaning of a process or situation?
Mechanism versus organicism– Are effects traceable to simple and direct causal agents, or are they the product of more system-wide, organic functions?
– Can important and accurate understandings be gained by understanding just parts of the system, or must the entire system be understood for even the parts to be understood well?
Linear versus nonlinear– Are functional relationships linear or nonlinear (i.e., are relationships between input and output variables proportional or non-proportional)?
– Can a single line of explanation convey a concept or account for a phenomenon, or are multiple overlapping lines of explanation required for adequate coverage?

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