Community Problem Solving



Recommended Publications


Creative & Critical Thinking Tools for CmPS

$ 57.00

This publication clarifies the steps of the problem solving process as they apply to CmPS. For each of the problem solving steps, a variety of creative thinking tools and critical thinking tools are provided.


Community Problem Solving is a stand out extra-curricular project-based program for schools.  Students select a real world problem from their community, identify a solution, and then actively implement their action plan to address the problem.

Community Problem Solving is ideal for developing strategic thinking, leadership skills and encouraging a wider contribution to community service.

Students in Community Problem Solving around the world, working both in teams and as individuals, have implemented a wide range of action plans, ranging from cleaning up hazardous waste, promoting indigenous literacy and finding homes for unwanted pets. Projects can be single or multi-year.

For individual student registrations, Community Problem Solving is ideal for fulfilling the research and service aspects of the IB Diploma, and can assist with the requirement to undertake a specified number of service hours to graduate.

​​​​​​​How does CmPS work?
What are the benefits?

Community Problem Solving helps students develop skills in research, analytical thinking and problem solving, leadership and teamwork.  

Students may engage in research, fundraising, community outreach, information development and dissemination, documentation and evaluation, and can learn powerful lessons about creating change, about dealing with local authorities and organisations, and about making a positive impact.

CmPS can be pursued as an extracurricular activity or as part of the regular school curriculum and projects can take one or more years.

- Engages students in the real world using independent thought and action
- Apply the problem solving process to real and current problems in their communities
- Stimulates critical and creative thinking skills
- Fosters collaboration and teamwork
- Encourages students to develop a vision for community improvement

Benefits of CmPS
Submission and assessment?

The submission requirements are in 3 parts:
•    A Project Proposal
•    A Project Report
•    Supporting Materials

Project Proposal:  The Proposal is a planning/guiding document that captures the original analysis of the Area of Concern and the students’ anticipated actions. The Project Proposal should comprehensively depict the use of the problem solving process in the inception of the project. It establishes the project vision, defines goals, specifies deadlines, and demonstrates the use of the problem solving process during project development.

Project Report:  The Project Report presents what efforts were actually undertaken, tasks accomplished, project modifications, and student reflections. It communicates the progress achieved during the implementation of the project. This section reflects the actual work accomplished by the students to date and the progress made to fulfill the goals established in the Underlying Problem. Emphasis should be placed on the explanation of the Action Plan – its role in community engagement, project accomplishments, hurdles encountered, lessons learned, etc. It reflects how the problem solving process was employed throughout the project’s implementation as the need to adapt/expand/modify the project goals/actions/efforts arose. 

Supporting Materials: The Supporting Materials provide the opportunity to present evidence of project actions beyond the description included in the Proposal and Report. The Portfolio, Display, Promotional Video, and Interview offer additional avenues through which to depict the efforts of the project and the impact it has had on the community.
Each element of the supporting documentation should add to the presentation of the project and build on the Proposal and Report, rather than duplicating information already presented. 

How do I get started?

Begin your CmPS participation by registering.  Select if your participation is going to be as team or with an individual.  First time coach would also find the publication Creative & Critical Thinking Tools for CmPS to be a useful resource.

Training in the problem solving process is essential for coaches in Community Problem Solving. FPS Australia offers Professional Development Workshops at the beginning of each year.

Community Problem Solving skills aligned with Education Standards

Community Problem Solving skills aligned with Education Standards

The purpose of Community Problem Solving is to challenge students to apply the problem solving process to real problems in their communities to create positive change. In using the Creative Problem Solving Process, students are able to develop their thinking skills and enhance their creativity, and fulfil many educational standards as well.
See CmPS in Action

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