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PELT College Writing: Problem/Solution Essay

Resources on College Writing for PELT students.

Problem Solution: Recommended databases

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Use the Book & Media Catalog to find print books and e-books.

Some tips:

  • Use one or two main words to find your topic.
  • When you've found a book, click AVAILABILITY to see where the book is located.
  • To read e-books off-campus, you'll need to log-in with your Carroll info.
  • Frustrated or stuck? Ask a librarian for help!

How to use Opposing Viewpoints in Context

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Problem Solution essay topics


  • Recidivism
  • Reoffending
  • Repeat offenders
  • Reentry
  • Choose a specific crime, such as stalking, drug abuse, or theft

Tip: Use Advanced search to look up two terms or phrases at once. You might combine your general topic with an idea for a solution. For example: Recidivism and Substance abuse treatment.

Other ideas:

  • Mental health services
  • Workforce partnerships
  • Rehabilitation
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), or other specific mental health service

Suggested articles:

Opioid overdoses

  • Opioid overdoses
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • "Big pharma" (a popular term among critics of the pharmaceutical industry)
  • Overdose prevention
    • Harm reduction
    • Syringe or needle exchange
    • Naloxone or Narcan
  • Pain management

Tip: Consider adding a second search term if you want to narrow your focus.

Suggested articles:


  • homelessness
  • "housing first"
  • housing insecurity
  • homeless families
  • homeless children
  • poverty

Tip: Consider focusing on a specific population, such as veterans, LGBTQ youth, women, or people with mental illness. You can type any of these populations into the database as an additional search term.

Tip: Homelessness is caused by variety of factors (economic factors, family relationships, mental illness, lack of affordable housing, drug abuse, alcoholism). Consider using one of these issues to focus your research.

Sample articles: