Step 1 : Analysis of a problem.
Step 1.1a. Knowledge of terms, concepts, definitions.
- From the very beginning you must know and understand the meanings
of words and of the concepts involved in a subject area.
- - sometimes definitions are included in the problem, but most times
this is not so and you must call on your memory for them.
- - if you don't know the meaning of a word or understand a concept,
then you are attempting to solve a problem that you don't
completely understand. As a general rule problems you don't
understand you cannot solve.
- - from a homework point of view, assigned problems can only be
completed satisfactorily if you understand the problem completely.
- - doing problems requires that you have most of the knowledge
before you start the problem; doing problems is an exercise in
using knowledge; if you do not have the knowledge in the first
place, you cannot use it.
- Recommendation : You should thoroughly understand and know the
concepts met in class before tackling any problems and use the
problems to :
- check whether you do in fact know and understand the material.
- help reorganize the knowledge and reinforce the understandings
that you already have.
Next page : Step 1.1b. An understanding of the nature of the problem.
A thru E Index