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Identify the Problem

Defining the Social Problem
As a public policy analyst, you will first need to define a social problem within a particular period in American history. Since you will be spending a great deal of time learning about this problem and analyzing the public policy solutions that were implemented for it, be sure to pick a social problem topic that is:
  • of interest to everyone in the group;
  • related to at least one specific concept that is required by the state curriculum; and
  • approved by your teacher

Here are some steps to consider in selecting and defining a social problem for your public policy analysis:

  • Read the section that discusses social problems
  • Follow the directions contained on the list of Topics for Developing American History Social Problems
  • You may then:
    • Select one of the examples from the list and use it to develop a specific social problem or
    • Use your textbook topics to identify a social problem, time period and theme or
    • Select a social problem based on your teacherís recommendations