Branching diagrams can have two or more divisions under the main heading, and each division can have a variable number of subdivisions. Hence, a topic in the lower boxes is typically a part of—or otherwise subordinate to—the topic one level above it. Note that the number of branches can and should vary according to the needs of the information being conveyed. Figure 1 shows the shape of a simple branching diagram.
Branching diagrams are good for hierarchies, classifications, org charts, family trees, etc. Whenever you are learning something that can be organized into hierarchical relationships, a branching diagram can be a very useful and succinct way to represent, visualize, and remember the information. For example, when first learning about the U.S. government's structure, learners may be presented with a diagram showing its three main branches: executive, legislative, and judicial (see Figure 2).