What does problem solving mean?

Definitions for problem solving
prob·lem solv·ing

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word problem solving.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. problem solvingnoun

    the area of cognitive psychology that studies the processes involved in solving problems

  2. problem solvingnoun

    the thought processes involved in solving a problem


  1. Problem solving

    Problem solving is the process of achieving a goal by overcoming obstacles, a frequent part of most activities. Problems in need of solutions range from simple personal tasks (e.g. how to turn on an appliance) to complex issues in business and technical fields. The former is an example of simple problem solving (SPS) addressing one issue, whereas the latter is complex problem solving (CPS) with multiple interrelated obstacles. Another classification is into well-defined problems with specific obstacles and goals, and ill-defined problems in which the current situation is troublesome but it is not clear what kind of resolution to aim for. Similarly, one may distinguish formal or fact-based problems requiring psychometric intelligence, versus socio-emotional problems which depend on the changeable emotions of individuals or groups, such as tactful behavior, fashion, or gift choices.Solutions require sufficient resources and knowledge to attain the goal. Professionals such as lawyers, doctors, and consultants are largely problem solvers for issues which require technical skills and knowledge beyond general competence. Many businesses have found profitable markets by recognizing a problem and creating a solution: the more widespread and inconvenient the problem, the greater the opportunity to develop a scalable solution. There are many specialized problem-solving techniques and methods in fields such as engineering, business, medicine, mathematics, computer science, philosophy, and social organization. The mental techniques to identify, analyze, and solve problems are studied in psychology and cognitive sciences. Additionally, the mental obstacles preventing people from finding solutions is a widely researched topic: problem solving impediments include confirmation bias, mental set, and functional fixedness.


  1. problem solving

    Problem Solving is a cognitive process directed at achieving a goal when the solution is not immediately obvious. It involves recognizing the existence of a problem, identifying possible solutions, evaluating and selecting the most suitable option, implementing it, and finally verifying its effectiveness. This process often requires critical thinking, creativity and analytical skills.


  1. Problem solving

    Problem-solving consists of using generic or ad hoc methods, in an orderly manner, for finding solutions to problems. Some of the problem-solving techniques developed and used in artificial intelligence, computer science, engineering, mathematics, medicine, etc. are related to mental problem-solving techniques studied in psychology.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Problem Solving

    A learning situation involving more than one alternative from which a selection is made in order to attain a specific goal.

Editors Contribution

  1. problem solving

    The process of design is analogous to problem solving. The designer uses the understanding of art properties, aesthetics and functional systems to define and support human needs and desires and how to intuitively assign them specifically and creatively to a physical space. The goal is to create a pleasing solution that results in a specific intellectual and emotional response. The designer uses knowledge and understanding of these principles and elements to manipulate and invoke the desired response through human sensory implication. How does one manipulate the elements of line, space, form, balance, scale ,color, light, contrast, pattern, repetition and rhythm, to create an environment that is rooted in sensory perception? First, the designer defines the existing negative contributors to the space; identifies the emotional and physical missing links and then uses them as tools to set in motion the process of solving a series of problems. This activity begins, continues and ends in the act of problem solving , in its maze of venues , and is called design.

    Design is a problem solving process

    Submitted by anonymous on February 14, 2016  

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of problem solving in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of problem solving in Pythagorean Numerology is: 8

Examples of problem solving in a Sentence

  1. Emily Harkins:

    This competition has taught us a lot, not just business skills but also cost-evaluation, problem-solving skills, and business etiquette, and how to interact with other people.

  2. Paul Cohen:

    [T]oday we view computers as tools to be activated by a few clicks or keywords, in large part because we are separated by a language barrier, the goal of CwC is to bridge that barrier, and in the process encourage the development of new problem-solving technologies.

  3. Steve Hilton:

    It would be an incredible coup for London if Mike Bloomberg could be persuaded to run for mayor here, his kind of pragmatic, problem-solving leadership is exactly what London needs.

  4. Ayn Rand:

    What is a demanding pleasure that demands the use of ones mind! Not in the sense of problem solving, but in the sense of exercising discrimination, judgment, awareness.

  5. Loren Weisman:

    The people who blame everything and every body else for their lack of success, tended to continue to have a lack of success. Your Proactive, problem solving minded, assertive and responsible approach is going to carry you much further than whining, blaming, pointing fingers and justifying your failures.

Translations for problem solving

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"problem solving." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 22 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/problem+solving>.

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    excessively agitated; distraught with fear or other violent emotion
    • A. alternate
    • B. nasty
    • C. obnoxious
    • D. frantic

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