What is a research problem
A research problem, in general, refers to some difficulty which a researcher experiences in the context of either a theoretical or practical situation and wants to obtain a solution for the same.
Over and above these conditions, the individual or the organization can be said to have the problem only if they do not what courses of action are best, i.e., they must be in doubt about the solution.
Thus, an individual or a group of persons can be said to have a problem which can be technically described as a research problem, if they ( individual or the group), having one or more desired outcomes, are confronted with two or more courses of action that have some but not equal efficiency for the desired objectivity and are in doubt about which course of action is best.
We can, thus, state the components of a research problem as under:
- There must be an individual or a group which has some difficulty or the problem.
- There must be some objectives to be attained at. If one wants nothing, one cannot have a problem.
- There must be alternative means ( or the courses of action) for obtaining the objectives one wishes to attain. This means that there must be at least two means to a researcher for if he has no choice of means, he cannot have a problem.
- There must remain some doubt in the mind of a researcher with regard to the selection of alternatives. This means that research must answer the question concerning the relative efficiency of the possible alternatives.
- There must be some environment(s) to which the difficulty pertains.
Selecting the problem
- The subject which she is overdone on should not be normally chosen, for it will be a difficult task to throw any new light in such a case.
- The controversial subject should not become the choice of an average researcher.
- The too narrow or too vague problem should be avoided.
- This subject selected for research should be familiar and feasible so that the related research material or sources of research are within one’s reach.