Thursday, April 14, 2011

Problem Solving Module: Identifying the Challenge

Dear students,

as part of the Problem Solving Module that you are going through, you are required to identify and work on a real life problem in a group.

Last week, we have talked about Understanding the Challenge, the first step in Problem Solving. The trolley challenge was the practice problem used to guide you through the process of Problem Solving. Hence, during my absence, you will need to come up with the challenge that you and your team members have identified by the end of the lesson.

Task 1: Generating Scenarios/Situations (Individual) - 10 minutes

  • Generate at least 3 real life scenarios/situations that are of concern. Write down your ideas on a piece of paper.
  • For example, shoppers in the supermarket complained that trolleys cannot be found when they need them.
  • During generation of ideas, you may consider scenarios/situations that are of concern in all these categories:
    • Arts & Aesthetics
    • Basic Needs
    • Business & Commerce
    • Communication
    • Defence
    • Economics
    • Education
    • Environment
    • Ethics & Religion
    • Government & Politics
    • Law & Justice
    • Miscellaneous
    • Physical Health
    • Psychological Health
    • Recreation
    • Social Relationships
    • Technology
    • Transportation

Task 2: Focusing of ideas (Group work) - 20 minutes

  • Work in the group that you have formed for this Problem Solving Module.
  • Discuss and run through all the different scenarios/situations that your group has come up with.
  • Using Hit and Hot Spots, identify 1 scenario/situation that your group wishes to work on.
  • Refer to your notes on CI4P when considering.
  • Record all your discussions on a google spreadsheet and share with me. Please save your google spreadsheet as “I & E_Groupname”.

Thereafter, please carry on to generate possible challenges (the problems, issues or concerns) that can be found in the scenario/situation that your group has identified to work on.

Task 3: Generating Challenges found in the scenario/situation (Individual)- 10 minutes

  • Generate at least 8 challenges based on the scenario/situation identified. Write down your ideas on a piece of paper.
  • When writing the challenge statement, explain what the challenge is and why is it a problem.
  • For example, since shoppers are complaining about the shortage of trolleys, they may go to other supermarkets to do their shopping, resulting in loss of customers.

Task 4: Focusing of ideas (Group Work) - 40 minutes

  • In your group, discuss and run through all the different challenges that your group has come up with.
  • Using Hit and Hot spots, select 8 challenges that your group finds promising to work on.

  • After which, using Evaluation Matrix, examine your selected 8 challenges carefully, considering the details that may help you to see where the greatest potential might be.
  • Examine each of the options using the criteria. (You may refer to the notes on some considerations to be taken into account when selecting a challenge)
  • You may decide on how to apply the criteria, eg, ratings, ticks etc.
  • Please record all discussions (including the Evaluation Matrix) in the google spreadsheet, under a different tab, name it “Challenges”.


Criterion 1


Criterion 2


Criterion 8




Sample Evaluation Matrix

I hope that by the end of the lesson, you and your team members would have come up with the challenge that you intend to work on.

Best wishes,

Ms Lim

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