In contrast to well-structured problems, ill-structured problems have no initial clear or spelled out goals, set of operations, end states, or constraints. In fact ISPs often times have unstated goals and constraints that must be determined by those solving the problem. ISPs present uncertainty about which concepts, rules, and principles are necessary for the solution and how these should be organized. They require learners to make judgments about the problem and to defend their judgments by expressing personal opinions or beliefs. ISPs possess multiple solutions and solution paths, or may possess no solutions at all. They offer no general rules or principles for describing or predicting the outcome of most cases and require multiple criteria for evaluating solutions. Examples of ISPs include redesigning a work process, designing a new product, or creating a new marketing strategy.

cf wicked

Cedric Chin May'2022 series: Learning In Ill-Structured Domains Series

An ill-structured domain (Rand Spiro et al, 1988) is a specific kind of domain where there are concepts, but the way concepts instantiate are highly variable. As a result, experts in ill-structured domains have to deal with constant novelty, where every problem is unlike previous cases that the expert has see.

Example domains include medicine — where there are concepts like 'heart attack', but the way heart attacks show up in patients are highly variable — but also include domains like business, software engineering, and investing.

The Best Way to Learn From Other People's Experiences

Why bother learning history, when history isn't likely to repeat itself? We take a look at what Cognitive Flexibility Theory tells us about the best way to learn from other people's experiences.

(2022-02-08) Chin How Note-Taking Can Help You Become An Expert

The Principles are Useless On Their Own

What happens if cases are more important than principles in your domain? Some non-obvious implications. (case-study)

(2022-02-23) Chin Ill-structured Domains Aren't Necessarily Wicked

(2022-05-10) Chin Cognitive Flexibility Theory The Rules

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