Just noticed the tag, which seems to be frequently misused. I understood it to mean "this question is about helping kids learn to solve their problems" as in Any advice on how to react to my 4 year old who gets hysterical instead of solving her "problem"? and Teaching logic and problem solving to children?, but it seems to be being misused to mean "this question is about a problem I'm trying to solve," which really describes most every question on the site.

I have edited here, here, and here to remove the improper usages and added a tag wiki. Since it's misused as often as properly used, should it be banned, and a better synonym created for the correct usage? If so, what should the synonym be? Or have I got it wrong, and the connotation I perceived as misuse should actually be supported?

Edit: There seemed to be a pretty good consensus on using instead, so I made the change.

  • That's why I added the status-completed. Good idea about accepting an answer, though. Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 21:50
  • That's actually what drove me to confusion - it took me a while to figure out what the 'completed' action was :) Thanks!
    – Joe
    Commented Jan 31, 2014 at 21:52

3 Answers 3


I propose to rename it as per Jeremy Miller's suggestion.


I don't think it makes any sense for 'problem solving' to mean 'I have a problem, help me solve it', since that's what all of StackExchange is about. I think it makes sense as "problem-solving skills", as you have interpreted it.

I'm not even sure the first question you linked (the 4 year old tantrum question) makes sense there - it's not really about 'problem solving' either, though perhaps that's splitting hairs. To me, it would be questions like the second question: problem solving as in the logical/deductive reasoning skill.

  • 3
    I favor renaming it problem solving skills. Commented Jan 28, 2014 at 8:15

I totally agree with your interpretation (and Joe's) of the tag. If we wanted to get rid of "problem solving" altogether though:

Critical Thinking skills and Problem solving are closely related. Perhaps a replacement tag related to critical thinking?

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