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Applied Research Center Abraham S. Fischler School of Education

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Presentation on theme: "Applied Research Center Abraham S. Fischler School of Education"— Presentation transcript:

1 Applied Research Center Abraham S. Fischler School of Education
The Problem Statement Applied Research Center Abraham S. Fischler School of Education Summer Conference 2012

2 General Information The Problem Statement and associated sections make up the beginning of Chapter 1 of the Concept Paper. This section should follow the Style Guide for the Applied Dissertation and the sixth edition of the APA manual. Students who have already completed the Concept Paper will use this session to work on expanding their Preliminary Literature Review, or they will begin work on Chapter 3.

3 The “Problem” There are two types of problems:
An actual situation that is hindering the overall effectiveness of the organization A theoretical or clinical question confronting the researcher Background and Significance—Briefly document the existence of the problem or question to demonstrate that it is generally recognized in the field; you may support the status of the problem or question with data (publicly and already available) and by providing brief citations of key research findings and/or expert opinion.

4 The “Problem” Define components/elements of the problem if applicable.
Give a brief description of the setting where the research study will take place the profile of the organization and other pertinent general background information other relevant information as determined by the committee Discuss the feasibility of the research study within the context of your role within the organization. Address gaps in research literature and rationale for study.

5 How the Problem Differs From Other Parts of Research
A research problem is an educational issue, controversy, or concern that guides the need for conducting the study. A research topic is the broad subject matter being addressed in a study. A purpose is the major intent or objective of the study. Research questions are those that the researcher would like answered or addressed in the study.

6 Differences Among the Topic, Problem, Purpose, and Questions
General Topic Distance learning Research Problem Lack of students in distance classes To study why students do not attend distance-education classes at a community college Purpose Statement Does the use of Website technology in the classroom deter students from enrolling in a distance- education class? Research Question Specific

7 Writing the Problem Statement
 What is the problem? The problem is the problem! Period. It is not a "question," "topic,” “cause,” or “solution.” How to start construction of the problem statement Examine the evidence Let the evidence lead to proposed objectives Suggest possible causes Let the causes lead to your possible solutions or interventions and dependent variables

8 Class Participation EXAMPLE PROBLEM? Not a "question," "topic,” “cause,” or “solution” WHY IS IT A PROBLEM? Reason for and significance of problem WHERE? Location on some scheme, model, or framework of communications study WHO HAS DONE WHAT ABOUT RESEARCH ON THIS PROBLEM? Reference to relevant studies and an explanation of their relevance; has a theoretical basis HOW? What original observations, documents, interviews, etc. will be involved?

9 Key Points "The problem statement describes the context for the study and it also identifies the general analysis approach" (Wiersma, 1995, p. 404). It is important in a proposal that the problem stand out and that the reader can easily recognize it. A problem statement should be presented within a context; that context should be provided and briefly explained, including a discussion of the conceptual or theoretical framework in which it is embedded. Clearly and succinctly identify and explain the theoretical framework that undergirds your study. This is a key element that associations such as AERA and APA look for in proposals. It is essential in all quantitative research. State the problem in terms that are intelligible to someone who is generally sophisticated but who is relatively uninformed in the area of your investigation. Frank Pajares

10 Today’s Work Session Template
Chapter 1: Introduction The Topic This is a brief description of the proposed area of study. Background and Significance of the Problem Provide evidence from the literature and experience showing that the problem exists and the relevance. Include references. The research problem. This is an area of conflict, concern, or controversy. “The problem to be addressed by the proposed study is…” Deficiencies in the Evidence Include a brief discussion that details the area of need in relation to the problem and the deficiency or lack of evidence in the literature. Audience Discuss who is affected and who benefits.

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