A problem statement is the core idea of your dissertation or research paper. Writing a dissertation or a research paper necessitates writing a statement which clearly defines the author’s stance on the issue. A problem statement must be coherent and logically consistent, conveying the core idea of the research coherently and taking a strong defensible position on the issue. Therefore, writing a coherent statement of the problem for your research is imperative. This article provides a comprehensive overview of how to write a problem statement for your research.
What is a Problem Statement?
A problem statement seeks to address the core issue of your research by clearly articulating the core idea of your research. Statement of the problem encapsulates the knowledge void that your study seeks to fill in a novel or different way by incorporating sufficient and reliable evidence. A problem statement comprises a few sentences and conveys the central focus of your study to the readers. After reading the problem statement, the reader gets a clear idea about your study’s research objectives and rationale.
A key point to remember is that a problem statement should not be broad. A broad statement is generic, and it leads to vague results. The statement must be specific, focusing on one specific issue and tackling one or two main aspects of that issue in the study. Also, a problem statement must be an argumentative and debatable statement. It is not a mere conjecture or opinion but a coherent statement that is arguable, and you can support it with corroborating evidence. For example, the statement “Unicorns exist” is invalid since it is based on an imaginary idea and subsequently cannot be classified as a problem statement.
A problem statement helps researchers develop the context of their research and is the primary foundation upon which a researcher develops the research. For instance, by highlighting the gaps in the existing studies, a researcher attempts to fill the gap by asserting that this study will attempt to bridge certain gaps using particular methods. A problem statement helps the researcher justify the rationale and significance of the research. It can be as long as a paragraph depending upon the nature and scope of the study and as short as a few sentences, which is incorporated in the introduction of a research paper or dissertation.
What are the attributes of a well-written problem statement?
A well-written problem statement captures the essence of your research and provides the gist of your study to the reader by clearly articulating the core idea of your study. A good statement of the problem has the following features:
- A well-written statement of the problem is straightforward, argumentative, and concise. It does not have any loose ends and conveys the core idea of your research in a logical manner
- It helps you establish the context and significance of your research
- It justifies the rationale of your research
- A good problem statement helps you formulate straightforward and to-the-point research questions
- It clearly defines your position and demonstrates to the reader that you are confident about what you are saying. Conversely, a vague problem statement gives the impression that you are not sure of what you are doing; therefore, it is imperative to avoid vague and uncertain language in your problem statement.
How to write a problem statement for your research?
Writing a problem statement is the most crucial task in research and therefore it must be composed after careful deliberation. If you experience difficulty composing a well-argued statement of the problem, you can always take assistance from expert writers at Dissertation Help UK.
You can write a coherent and logical problem statement by using the following guidelines.
Step 1: Develop the Context
You cannot introduce a problem statement abruptly in your study without providing the necessary background to the reader. So, it is imperative to first develop the context of your research and pave the way for a smooth transition to the statement of the problem in your research. There are two types of problem statements: practical and theoretical. Practical statement of the problem encompasses providing the concrete information to the reader and taking a solution-oriented approach. The first step is to provide the background information of the topic to the reader. Here are a few tips to compose a practical problem statement:
- Inform the reader about the origins of the issue or problem that you want to address in your research
- What are the causes and effects of that particular problem? For instance, how did the problem arise and what specific group or aspect of society is affected by it?
- What measures were taken in the past to address the issue?
For a theoretical statement of the problem, you can use the following guidelines:
- Inform the reader about the existing knowledge of the theoretical issue
- Inform the reader about the nature and scope of the existing theoretical problem
- Briefly explain and define the conceptual underpinnings of the theoretical issue and how it is articulated in the existing body of knowledge.
Step 2: Highlight the Importance
The next step is to highlight the importance of the research problem and justify to the reader the significance of the research problem. It is imperative to justify the rationale because your reader wants to know why a particular research problem matter. However, it does not mean that you have to concoct something out worldly or signify a groundbreaking discovery. You can highlight the significance by demonstrating to the reader that the problem statement is worthy of research and feasible to conduct. For example, a practical research problem will highlight the importance in the following manner:
- What will be the practical implications and solutions of a practical problem statement?
- Who will be the major beneficiaries once the problem is solved?
- Highlight the relevance of the problem statement to the reader’s life and how it can be used to study different issues in similar contexts
For theoretical research problems, you can highlight the significance in the following manner:
- How will the current research address the gaps and pave the way for advancing knowledge in a particular domain?
- What will be the implications of the research problem for future studies?
Highlighting the significance of the problem statement helps you justify the rationale of your research and therefore it must be written with precision and clarity. If you cannot write a statement of the problem by yourself, you can always take help from expert writers at Dissertation Writers UK.
A well-written problem statement captures the essential idea of your research in a convincing manner. It must have clarity and precision and compel the reader to engage with your research. You can refer to the guidelines mentioned above for writing a coherent and logical statement of the problem for your research.