Some time ago, it was discussed and voted here if "homework" should be a tag. Well, I have been thinking about this matter today, and I have had an idea.
Why shouldn't be two kinds of tags? Topic tags, such algebra, calculus, number theory, etc., and intention tags, which would describe why the OP makes such question.
OPs can ask for three main reasons:
- They must know the answer. These are high school homework, a little part of a thesis or something that they must understand to pass an exam.
- They want to know the answer. These are altruistic search of knowledge, unsolved problems the came to mind while having a shower, or the puzzle that that neighbour suggested yesterday, when he rang the door to ask for some salt.
- They already know the answer, and they intend to write their own answer immediately, tomorrow or in two years.
On a first approach, there could be three intention tags: work, curiosity and challenge.
EDIT: This begun as a comment to Rafflesia's answer, but it grew too much.
I totally agree with the first three reasons you gave. And for this very reason I think that there should be two separate, different kinds of tags. Topic tags would be the tags that we have now, and intention tags are another kind of tags, completely different. The behaviour, their look, their colour...
Let me talk in programming language: we have the class Question and one of its entries is tags; my proposal is renaming the entry tags and call it topic, and then adding a new one called intention.
Tags are like adjectives. But most tags in this web are about topics. Then, you can be an expert in on a certain topic, but not in the intention of the OP. You can categorize answers by topics, but also by the intention of the OP. Just like you can categorize fruits by their color, by ther size, shape, place of origin, etc.
So... there could be even more kinds of tags. Academic level, for example. If we had academic level tags we would not need tags like elementary number theory, precalculus, etc.
The use of these new kinds of tags would be make search and classification easier.