Friday, March 10, 2017

Research problem statements

Example 1
It remains unclear whether street-dancers will have more positive or more negative body image in comparison with non-dancers…. In order to test these contrasting hypotheses, the present study compared actual-ideal weight discrepancy, body appreciation, and media influences between street-dancers and an age-matched sample of non-dancers.

Swami, V., & TovĂ©e, M. J. (2009). A comparison of actual-ideal weight discrepancy, body appreciation, and media influence between street-dancers and non-dancers. Body Image, 6(4), 304-307.

Example 2 
Nevertheless, the BAS’s psychometric properties can be improved….. The original BAS has two additional limitations…. Therefore, in light of recent literature on positive body image and the aforementioned limitations of the original BAS, we revised and updated this scale,

Tylka, T. L., & Wood-Barcalow, N. L. (2015). The Body Appreciation Scale-2: item refinement and psychometric evaluation. Body Image, 12, 53-67.

Example 3 
Less studied is the way in which (if at all) perfectionism relates to the risk factors for eating disorders. ….. Thus further research is required in order to better understand the complexities of which type of perfectionism relates to body dissatisfaction.

Wade, T. D., & Tiggemann, M. (2013). The role of perfectionism in body dissatisfaction. Journal of eating disorders, 1(1), 2.


In example 1, the authors highlighted contradictory predictions based on existing work. That's why they said 'it is unclear'; different theories led to different hypotheses. Therefore, they conducted the study to see which hypothesis would be supported.

In example 2, the problem is the limitations of an existing scale (BAS). based on previous studies, 3 limitations were found. Therefore, to continue using the scale, modifications were suggested and that's why the authors conducted the study.
Notice how the 'lack of study' is used in example 3. The lack of study regarding perfectionism is considered a problem. However, justification were given as to why this problem SHOULD be solved. In fact, several studies were quoted to provide the evidence that different types of perfectionism are related to body dissatisfaction.