How to Write the Problem Statement, Research Objectives and Research Questions?


Embarking on the journey of academic research demands a meticulous approach, particularly when formulating the foundational elements of a study— the problem statement, research objectives, and research questions. In the previous session, a meticulously crafted model was refined, laying the groundwork for a subsequent exploration into the art of drafting a problem statement. This tutorial seeks to guide you through this intricate process, drawing on a template that emphasizes the interplay between independent and dependent variables, mediating and moderating roles, and their application in a specific context. Through a step-by-step breakdown, we delve into the essential preliminary steps, unraveling the significance of background studies, variable relationships, and existing research gaps. Join us as we unravel the journey from a comprehensive problem statement to the formulation of research objectives and questions, employing explicit and outcome-oriented language for a refined and impactful research framework.

Draft Research Problem, Objectives, and Questions

Learn How to Draft a Problem Statement, Research Objectives, and Research Questions

The tutorial is a step by step guide on how to start the research process. 
Last Lecture: How to Design an Original Research

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How to Draft a Problem Statement?


Drafting a Problem Statement: A Comprehensive Guide

In one of the preceding sessions, a model was developed based on identified gaps in existing research. The model, moderated by a moderator, delves into relationships involving independent variables (IVs) such as green marketing practices and green human resource (HR) practices, along with sub-dimensions of green HR practices as identified in the preceding session on model design. Mediators and dependent variables are also integral components of this model. Now that the model is in place, the focus shifts to crafting a problem statement that stems from this model.

Establishing the Value and Background

When initiating the drafting process for a problem statement, it is crucial to provide a background to the study. This background encompasses the value of the chosen topic, existing research, and the identified gaps that prompted the investigation. In this case, the focal point revolves around green practices, leading to an exploration of the value and relevance of these practices in existing research.

Crafting the Problem Statement

The problem statement itself is a concise and comprehensive declaration, aiming to explain the research issue at hand. In this context as presented in the video tutorial, the problem statement is expressed as 

To determine the extent to which green marketing practices and green HR management practices impact task-related environmental performance and proactive environmental performance. 

This succinct statement encapsulates the core relationships and variables under scrutiny, with the study focusing on the subjects within the hospitality industry.

Transition to Research Objectives

Following the articulation of the problem statement, the subsequent step involves translating it into research objectives. These objectives, once achieved, contribute to addressing the outlined problem. The process of converting the problem statement into research objectives will be explored in detail in the subsequent session, leading to the formulation of specific research questions.

Video (How to Write the Problem Statement?):

How to Draft the Research Objectives and Research Questions?

Transforming Problem Statement into Research Objectives and Research Questions

In the preceding session, the focus was on the art of crafting a problem statement. In the context of our present model, we intricately delineated the problem statement by incorporating independent variables influencing dependent variables through mediating variables. Additionally, we delved into the discussion of the moderating variable and the specific research domain. Now, having articulated the problem statement in a succinct and comprehensive manner to encapsulate the overarching issue or model at hand, the subsequent imperative is to transition this problem statement into discernible research objectives and questions.

Deriving Research Objectives from the Problem Statement

The genesis of your research objectives and questions lies in the elucidated problem statement. For instance, drawing from the problem statement from the earlier session mentioned in the previous video, a primary research objective materializes: 

To assess the impact of green marketing practices on task-related environmental performance. 

This objective, derived from the problem statement, encapsulates the relationship between green marketing practices and their correlation with task-related environmental performance. The subsequent step involves formulating additional objectives, such as exploring the impact of HR practices, thereby extending the breadth of the research objectives.

Structure of Research Objectives

Each research objective functions as a representation of the relationships under scrutiny within the model. These objectives can be categorized into main and sub-objectives. For instance, a main objective could be framed as follows: “Evaluate how the green mindset mediates the relationship between green marketing practices and task-related environmental performance.” Subsequently, the sub-objectives can further dissect this main objective, examining the specific connections between green marketing, green mindset, and task-related environmental performance.

Articulating Objectives as Research Questions

The transition from research objectives to questions involves a nuanced approach. For instance, an objective stating, “Ascertain the mediating role of green mindset on the relationship between HR practices and task-related environmental practices,” can be translated into a research question: “Does the green mindset mediate the relationship between HR practices and task-related environmental practices?” This transformation from objectives to questions underscores the fundamental notion that answering the questions will signify the attainment of the set objectives, ultimately resolving the overarching problem.


In conclusion, this guide provides insights into the strategic development of a problem statement, emphasizing the importance of a well-defined background, concise articulation, and a clear connection to research objectives. The subsequent session will delve into the transformation of the problem statement into actionable research objectives and questions, ultimately paving the way for a comprehensive research framework. 

The process of crafting research objectives and questions emanates directly from a meticulously constructed problem statement. The articulation of these objectives and questions aligns with the broader aim of elucidating the intricacies within the research model. This systematic approach ensures a focused and purposeful trajectory for your research study, with the ultimate goal of addressing the identified problem statement.

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Another Example of How to Draft the Problem Statement, Research Objectives and Research Questions?

Drafting Research Problem, Research Objectives, and Research Questions

In a preceding session, a comprehensive model was developed, and in the subsequent refinement of this model, a dedicated problem statement was formulated. To illustrate the intricacies of crafting a problem statement, a template was employed, beginning with the directive, “to ascertain the extent to which.” Within this framework, the independent variable, namely servant leadership, was identified, impacting the dependent variable—environmental behavior. Further elucidation included the mediating variables, encompassing green identity, green empowerment, green trust, and green climate, and the moderating variable, denoted as green locus of control.

Moving forward, envisioning the application in the education sector, the problem statement was contextualized. Emphasis was placed on the imperative preliminary steps, including establishing a robust background of the study, highlighting the value and significance of the variables, expounding on relationship dynamics, referencing existing research, identifying research gaps, and culminating in the concise formulation of the problem statement.

Subsequently, the transmutation of the problem statement into tangible research objectives and questions was elucidated. Drawing from the example of servant leadership’s impact on environmental behavior, a research objective emerged: “to assess the impact of servant leadership on environmental behavior.” Correspondingly, the research question took form: “Is there a significant impact of servant leadership on environmental behavior?” This structure, involving explicit and outcome-oriented verbs, was recommended for clarity and precision.

Further diversification of the research objectives involved exploring the mediating role of green identity in the relationship between servant leadership and environmental behavior. This main research objective was subdivided into three sub-objectives: discovering the impact of servant leadership on green identity, discerning the influence of green identity on environmental behavior, and evaluating the impact of servant leadership on environmental behavior.

This meticulous breakdown demonstrated the transformation of a singular mediating objective into a comprehensive set of sub-objectives, ensuring a nuanced exploration of the research domain. The same principles were applicable to research questions, fostering a structured and outcome-focused inquiry.

In conclusion, this tutorial aimed to enhance your understanding of the sequential process—initiating from problem statement formulation and progressing through research objectives and questions. The session underscored the importance of clarity, specificity, and thorough background exploration in the pursuit of meaningful and impactful research. Thank you for your attention.

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