# Difference Between Linear And Non Linear Data Structures

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

The Difference Between Linear And Non-Linear Data Structures is that Linear data structures are arranged sequentially and linearly. In contrast, the non-linear data structure is where data is not arranged sequentially and linearly. Data structures are the method to store and organize the information/data for the convenience of the user.

Difference Between Linear And Non-Linear Data Structures PDF

Data can be arranged linearly or non-linearly. Arranging the data in any of the two methods carries various differences which are explained in the coming sections, where a comparison of Linear data structure vs. non-linear data structure is provided in detail. In the coming sections, we will discuss the difference between linear and non-linear data structures along with knowing what is a linear data structure is and what a non-linear data structure is.

## Difference Between Linear and Non-Linear Data Structures

The major difference between linear and non-linear data structures is that linear data structures are ordered. In contrast, non-linear state structures are not ordered and are distributed in a random manner. Knowing the comparison of non-linear vs linear data structure can be really helpful in understanding the complex topics in the GATE CSE syllabus. Let us see the complete list of the differences between the linear and non-linear data structures in the table provided below:

### Key Differences Between Linear and Non-Linear Data Structures

 Linear Data Structures Non-Linear Data Structures Elements are ordered in a linear and sequential manner. Elements are ordered in a hierarchy. Only a single level is present. Multiple level data structures are present. Implementation is relatively easier. Implementation is relatively complicated. Traversed in a single run Take multiple runs to traverse the data. Memory utilization is not efficient compared to non-linear data structures Memory utilization is efficient. Examples: array, queue, linked list, etc. Examples: Trees, graphs, etc.

## What are Linear Data Structures?

Linear data structures are structures where data elements are ordered in a sequential or linear way. In the linear data structure, each element is attached to the elements before and after them. Various questions can be seen in the GATE previous years’ question papers based on Linear data structures. The involvement of the structures is at a single level only. They are easy to implement.

The linear data structures can be of various types. A few types of liner data structures are:

• Array,
• Stack,
• Queue,
• Hash Tables

## What are Non-Linear Data Structures?

Non-linear data structures are structures where data is not ordered in a sequential or linear way. There exist multiple levels of arrangement. It requires multiple run-downs to traverse the elements. Non-linear data structures are important for the upcoming GATE 2023 exam. The elements may or may not be attached to them before and after. They are known to be more efficient than linear data structures.

The non-linear data structures have various types. A few of the Non-linear data structures are:

• Trees
• Graphs

Check out some important related topics to the Difference Between Linear and Non-Linear Data Structures here:

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