A problem/solution presentation is a type of persuasive speech that not only identifies an issue and its causes, but also gives you the chance to propose a way to solve it. To give a successful speech, you must select a topic that is both significant and manageable enough to create a potential solution. You can select a meaningful, significant topic for your problem/solution speech by considering issues of safety, health and recreation that affect you and your peers.
A Deadly Driving Distraction
In 2014 the National Safety Council estimated that cell phone use while driving resulted in 26 percent of all car accidents. A problem/solution speech on this topic might begin by discussing the causes and effects of this issue, such as what makes drivers obey the compulsion to use phones in the car. Beware of potential solutions that don't really help the problem. Hands-free devices or car systems are seen by some as a better alternative, but a review in the Journal of Safety Research in 2009 found that "performance while using a hands-free phone was rarely found to be better than when using a handheld phone." Some possible solutions you might describe and research could include banning all cell phone use in traffic or encouraging parents to set a good example by putting their phones away in the car.
Stamping Out School Violence
In 1940, disrespectful speech, gum chewing, running in the halls and littering were among the biggest discipline problems in public schools. Today, teachers and administrators are more concerned with school shootings, knife violence, bullying and assault. Your problem/solution speech can address violence in schools, its consequences and what's caused this dangerous behavior. To create a solution, you might consider options like incentive systems that reward good behavior, parental involvement and peer mediation training, as well as traditional methods like disciplinary measures and increased school security.
School Sports Safety
Football, basketball and other sports may be enjoyable physical activities for students, but serious injuries like concussions can quickly end the fun. Approximately 173,285 children and teens are treated for traumatic brain injuries per year, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Use your problem/solution speech to not just offer a way to solve this issue, but teach your classmates about an important sports safety topic. You might address solution ideas like mandatory safety training for student athletes or a program for elementary school students to teach them about traumatic brain injuries early in life.
Double Click for Addiction
Social media, online role-playing games and YouTube videos can be fun in moderation, but for a growing number of people the Internet has become much more than that. Internet addiction is a condition that causes preoccupation with games and social connections to the point that it harms your job, grades, relationships and other responsibilities. Your speech can address these serious causes of Internet addiction, as well as how society's increased dependence on technology has fueled this problem. You might consider discussing solutions like an increased emphasis on the arts in schools and apps that log time spent on various Internet sites.
- Fountainhead Press: Persuasive Speech Assignment
- National Safety Council: Annual Estimate of Cell Phone Crashes 2014
- National Public Radio: Working to Stop Teens Texting Behind the Wheel
- Policy Study: Strategies to Keep Schools Safe
- University of Michigan: School Violence
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Concussions in Sports and Play
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Injury Prevention and Control: Traumatic Brain Injury
- Illinois Institute for Addiction Recovery: Internet Addiction
- Journal of Safety Research: Is a Hands-Free Phone Safer Than a Handheld Phone?
- Photo Credit Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images
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