What Is a Problem Solution Essay?

A problem solution essay is a paper where you need to present acertain problem and offer a solution for it. The formulation ofthe problem in a paper often causes difficulties for students.This is due to the fact that little attention can be given tothis issue in the classroom. At the same time, the description ofthe problem is an important part of the paper, since itdetermines the entire course of the project. The problem in science is understood as a question that needs tobe investigated. This is a kind of contradictory situation, whichrequires finding ways to resolve the contradiction that hasarisen.

Examples of contradictory situations:

Computer science should be developed for high schoolstudents, but there are no practical tools that would help itformation. Many youth associations of various levels are registered inthe country, but social surveys show that even among allinter-regional associations, only young people under the age of35 are known.

The problem can be both theoretical and practical. Gaps in theoryrequire the development of appropriate concepts, and difficultiesof a practical kind require the creation of certain means. Aftera detailed study of the contradiction that has arisen, theresearcher comes to the need to find a solution that will helpeliminate this contradiction. For the first example of a contradictory situation, such asolution may be the development of a tool that will allow thecomputer literacy of high school students. On the basis of theconclusion, an appropriate goal is set and the objectives of thepaper are formulated. For the second example, the solution couldbe a means of attracting young people to youth organizations.

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How to Highlight the Problem?

After you have found a contradiction that requires a solution,find out if a solution to this problem has already been found.Often during the defense, teachers notice that the issue you aretalking about has been repeatedly discussed in the literature andhas effective solutions. What then is the benefit of the work youhave done? If you do not bother to find out what has already beendone before you on the detected contradiction, then your workloses its meaning. In order not to face this serious difficulty, make a list ofproblems that have already been resolved on your topic, and alsofind out as much as possible what has already been done on yourproblem. This will help you not only reading the literature, butalso communication with professionals. They can be specialistswith a scientific degree, including your supervisor, orexperienced practices from the industry you are interested in.Talking with such people can significantly advance you in writinga problem solution essay, and in the future – a thesis. Onlyafter discovering that the problem does not yet have effectivesolutions you can begin to describe it.

When determining the problem, you should also consider thefollowing:

  • The problem should be meaningful personally for you,otherwise you will simply be weary of writing an uninterestingpaper.
  • The problem should be relevant for the society (it should bediscussed in different sources of information).
  • The problem should not be immense. If you knowingly take upthe problem from the category of world peace, do not be surprisedif you drop your hands during the research. It is better todevote time to making a certain production ecologically pure thanfighting for the purity of the whole planet.
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Description of the Problem and Degree of Its Study

The problem situation in the essay should be described not in onesentence, but in several. In the examples indicated above,reference should be made to relevant documents requiring thedevelopment of computer literacy (example 1), or youthorganizations, as well as centers that conducted youth surveys(example 2). The availability of statistical data will prove thatyou are raising not a far-fetched problem, but one that is reallysignificant for society. At the same time, you must specify linksto current sources of information, rather than refer to obsoletematerials of 20 years ago. After describing the problem, consider the degree of its study,for which you need to thoroughly study the most authoritative andrelevant sources on your research topic. In the formulation ofthis question, the following constructions will help you: The issue (your problem) is paid enough attention in... A number of scientific papers are devoted to individualaspects of this problem, but it cannot be considered solved,because... In the works... attention is paid... Another group of works is devoted... After doing this part of the work, it is advisable to show it tothe scientific supervisor, since during the defense, it is thestatement of the problem that is the weak point of the entirecourse. From the correctness of the description of the problemand the degree of its study, the success of all further work onthe research topic depends to a large extent.

How to Formulate the Research Problem


The methodological apparatus of any research includes thenomination and formulation of its problem. Whether it is in thestudent’s work, the final qualification, the analytical researchof the teacher, or the doctoral dissertation of the scientist,the problem of research is presented as a rationale and the needfor research as a whole.

A problem solution essay with a formulated topic requires theidentification of the issue and knowledge of the methodologicalfoundations of theoretical or practical study.

  • The research issue is the logical completion of thedescription of the relevance of the research topic, where theauthor points out that his topic cannot or couldn’t be realizedwithout solving the issue. The matter always appears at thejunction of old and new knowledge: when one knowledge is alreadyoutdated, and a new one has not yet appeared. The question can besolved in science, but not implemented in practice.
  • The correct formulation of the problem determines theresearch strategy: how scientific knowledge can be implemented inpractice, or how new knowledge can be collected in the process ofthe research. To formulate a problem means to separate the mainfrom the secondary, find out what is already known and what isstill unknown about the subject of the study.
  • Defining the research problem, the author answers thequestion: what has to be analyzed from the sources that wasn’tpreviously studied. The matter is an important and difficultissue. To substantiate the problem, it is crucial to argue infavor of the reality of the issue being posed; find valuable andmeaningful links with other problems.
  • To assess the problem, it is necessary to identify all theconditions necessary for its solution, including methods, means,and techniques. Find among the problems already solved similarissue to the one that is being solved, which greatly narrow thearea of research.
  • To construct the problem, it is necessary to narrow the fieldof study of the subject of research in accordance with the needsof the research and the possibilities of the researcher. If theresearcher manages to show the boundary between knowledge andignorance, known and unknown on the topic of study, the essenceof the research problem is determined easily and quickly.

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Selecting the Issue for Problem Solution Essay

First, it is significant to go through the sources available onthe theme of the paper. This can be review articles. From them,you will get the data about what was examined before you. Second, attempt to compile a list of issues that weren’taddressed previously or not fully explored. Thoroughly studythem, looking at all the advantages and disadvantages. Do notengage in global problems. The issue should refute the reply toone question, which you should be able to find. Third, ensure that the issue reflects the research theme withoutgoing beyond it. It is crucial to identify the trend of work andproceed that way. Don’t select deadlocks or difficultly solvable situations. Youmust comprehend the substance of the issue, be interested in it,have enough data on it, and there must be at least two ways forits successful solution. If this is the case, your selection of aproblem is good. You can easily begin writing a paper.

Examples of problems:

  • Topic: Different types of economy. Problem: What are thepreferential aspects of different types of economy?
  • Topic: Market economy. Problem: What are the levers of amarket economy?
  • Topic: Principles of taxation. Problem: What are theadvantages and disadvantages of taxation principles?
  • Topic: Tax Policy in the USA. Problem: What are theweaknesses of the tax policy in the USA?
  • Topic: Teaching styles. Problem: What is the properobservance of teaching styles in elementary school?