College Essay Examples

Critical Thinking

Critical Thinking

We have all at one point come in contact with scenarios that require the effective use of our problem-solving skills. As a result, as I choose to solve this second scenario involving my child. Following the six steps in the problem-solving process will lay a foundation for arriving at an ideal solution. Using the six steps will be significant because it will ensure that every person who reads my work understands why I used the approach (De Mast & Lokkerbol, 2012). Additionally, these steps are beneficial because they aid in removing bias and preconceptions, enabling me to achieve the desired outcomes.

In the presented scenario, my child has come from school with an assignment. Since the child is very excited to complete it, he begins working immediately. However, after reading through his assignment sheet, I noticed that he is not including all the necessary information needed to complete the project. Although I have an idea of how my child can complete his assignment, the recent insights that I gained from a parenting magazine on the significance of children developing responsibility for their children prevent me from showing my child the right thing.  The next day when I am at the grocery store, I come across parents whose son and mine are in the same class spending more than $ 30 in buying his son supplies needed to complete the science project. Additionally, the parent is taking a day off from work to help his child complete the assignment.

I selected this scenario because it presents an ethical dilemma regarding some of the common challenges parents face in their daily interactions with their children. Although there is an evident ethical dilemma, I believe that the presented problem can be viewed and analyzed from diverse perspectives. The six-step problem-solving process outlined in the web text will help me go a long way in solving this problem.

Step One: Define the Problem in the Scenario

As noted earlier, the presented scenario presents an ethical dilemma that has to be solved correctly.  One of the evident problems relates to the parents’ desire to complete the assignment independently with little or no interference since this would lay a foundation for him developing the initiative and responsibility of individual learning. However, one pressing question is whether you will allow your child to continue keying in the wrong answers when you have some ideas of helping him. Will you sit back and watch your child get the wrong answers until he discovers his mistakes, or will you step in and guide him on how to complete his project correctly? The second problem relates to what is the correct thing to do. In this case, as a parent, I have not availed of the necessary resources that my child needs in completing his project. On the other hand, another parent takes the initiative of purchasing all the essential resources needed for this project and takes a day off to assist the child.  I believe parents play crucial roles in their children’s studies. However, is it correct if a parent takes the full initiative to avail the necessary resources and even complete a given school project for their children?

Step 2: Analysis of the Problem in the Scenario

According to the presented scenario, the problem has mainly emerged because the two parents hold different views concerning the right thing to do. As a parent to a child who is not filing in the correct answers in a science project, the information for the parent’s magazine has created in me a notion that children should develop responsibility for their learning. On the other hand, the parent whose child schools with mine holds the view of helping the children excel in their studies. This includes availing all the necessary resources and helping children to complete their projects. From analysis, the parent in the scenario is trying to figure out if it is right to help his child to the correct thing despite knowing the significance of children developing responsibility for their learning.

Step three: Options for solving the identified problem in the scenario

The presented problem can be solved using a wide range of options. As a parent who wants good out of my child, I would request my child to re-read all the instructions again and see if they are missing on anything. The second option would be to take the initiative of shopping for my child the required inventory needed to complete the science project. The third option would be to decide and guide my child on how to complete the science project successfully since I had some ideas. Choosing not to help my child would be another option, although I would not feel okay since I failed to participate in helping my child do the correct thing. The last option would be to allow my child to complete the assignment independently and go through the work as we make some corrections and adjustments.

Step 4: Evaluation of the presented options

Evaluating every option is crucial since it helps one analyze the advantages and disadvantages of every option before finally choosing the ideal one. When evaluating a solution, it is essential to pay attention to issues such as feasibility and the effectiveness of every selected option (Ozturk & Guven, 2016). By analyzing all the presented options, each has both a positive and a negative side. For instance, when analyzing the first option, the child should be asked to re-read the instructions and see if they are missing anything. The child may overlook some things and continue filling in the wrong things in the list. This may be attributed to the fact that the child may be aware some crucial things are missing in the list but disregards them. However, by a parent being around, the child may be guided to see some of the things that he is missing and do the correct thing.

When analyzing the second option, it offers the parent some form of positive and negative accountability to the parent. The negative side is that the child will view his parent as their savior; as a result, they may be reluctant to fix some of the evident mistakes in their work. The third option would be ideal because although the child will have to complete the assignment, the parent will be available to offer assistance where necessary. Although the child may benefit from the third option, the parents need to be very careful to ensure that they do not take the entire initiative of assisting their child in doing the project. Lastly, going through the project after my child is through would be damaging because it would not encourage him to develop the initiative of finding errors independently.

Step Five: Best Decision to take

Based on the presented options, I believe that the third option is the best because by guiding my child on how to complete his project, he will not experience any problem in doing the same in the future. As a parent, it is my responsibility to ensure that my child excels in all their school projects. As a result, assisting a child helps them feel valued and treasured by their parents.

Step six: How to implement the solution

I will implement this option by first availing all the resources needed in the project. After that, I would call my child and discuss how the project needs to be done. After that, I will request the child to complete the project while following the instructions discussed earlier.


Every parent with school-going children are often faced with ethical dilemmas. Having the necessary problem-solving skills is crucial because it guides parents on solving their challenges in a morally upright way. By following the six steps in problem-solving, I have been able to select the best option that will benefit the parent and the child.


De Mast, J., & Lokkerbol, J. (2012). An analysis of the Six Sigma DMAIC method from the perspective of problem-solving. International Journal of Production Economics139(2), 604-614.

Ozturk, T., & Guven, B. (2016). Evaluating students’ beliefs in the problem-solving process: A case study. Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education12(3), 411-429.

Six-step Problem-solving Process: Strayer University Web text.

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By Hanna Robinson

Hanna has won numerous writing awards. She specializes in academic writing, copywriting, business plans and resumes. After graduating from the Comosun College's journalism program, she went on to work at community newspapers throughout Atlantic Canada, before embarking on her freelancing journey.

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