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  1. jullia

    is there any difference?

    is there any difference in the meaning of the folowing phrases:
    "to determine a problem"
    "to define a problem"
    "to detect a problem"?


  2. Junior Member
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      • English
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      • UK
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    • Join Date: Oct 2005
    • Posts: 97

    Re: is there any difference?

    Yes. This is my understanding of their useage, with examples.

    I hope it helps!

    To determine a problem: When it is believed there may/is a potential problem the problem is identified as existing - but may not be known or identified.

    "We now know why your office is so warm. We determined there is a problem with your air conditioner"

    To define a problem: - There was an unknown problem - it has now been specifically identified or 'defined'.

    "The electrical supply for the air conditioner was disconnected."

    To detect a problem: - Only after actively looking for any problems or after investigation (detective work) a problem was found, specific or not.

    "We tested the whole building for electrical faults. We detected a problem with your air conditioner although you did not report it."

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