Key Idea 1: Systems Thinking

Through systems thinking, people can recognize the commonalities that exist among all

systems and how parts of a system interrelate and combine to perform specific functions.

Key Idea 2: Models

Models are simplified representations of objects, structures, or systems, used in analysis,

explanation, or design.

Key Idea 3: Magnitude and Scale

The grouping of magnitudes of size, time, frequency, and pressures or other units of

measurement into a series of relative order provides a useful way to deal with the

immense range and the changes in scale that affect behavior and design of systems.

Key Idea 4: Equilibrium and Stability

Equilibrium is a state of stability due either to a lack of changes (static equilibrium) or a

balance between opposing forces (dynamic equilibrium).

Key Idea 5: Patterns of Change

Identifying patterns of change is necessary for making predictions about future

behavior and conditions.

Key Idea 6: Optimization

In order to arrive at the best solution that meets criteria within constraints, it is often

necessary to make trade-offs.