Individual Research Project Rubric and Requirement

This paper should be between 4-5 pages. However, if you find the topic of your paper more engaging, you are welcome to write up to a maximum of 8 pages (double spaced).

Remember in conducting your research to find minimum of 5-6 credible references. While Wikipedia can be helpful in scoping your project out, it is not necessarily a good source to cite. Other starting places for references include JSTOR, The Atlantic, Washington Post, NYT, MIT Tech Review, Wired Magazine and such.

Ultimately what I’m looking for is a thoughtful, researched analysis with of a technology with supported claims.

Below are the two options again.

Option 1: Addressing a social problem through technology. For this option, identify a social problem area that interests you, ideally a problem area which if addressed would make the world a better place. It could be anything from a social justice issue (e.g., homelessness) to using technology to improving accessibility to an application area like bringing advanced techniques to underserved countries to trends that may have unintended consequences (e.g., autonomous industrial vehicles on our highways) and the like. You are going to want to find something where you can get some secondary research on the area, and be able to think through the needs of users and contexts of use. The idea is that solving the tough problems are where the most innovation occurs, the innovation edge. Select a technology from on of the Gartner Hype Cycle List (Links to an external site.)

As part of this option, address the following two questions:

  1. What is the general problem area you are picking, and why are you picking it? What makes it important? Who do you think the users are, and what do you think their needs are based on what you know so far?
  2. What is the emerging technology that currently interests you and offers the potential for a new approach to the problem area? Describe why it interests you as a possibility.

Option 2:  Tech policy proposal. Select a technology (again the Gartner Hype Curve of Emerging Technologies (Links to an external site.)is a good place to begin) and not only discuss technology but the possible ethical issues surrounding it. You are welcome to explore technologies which may still be in development such  as facial recognition,  biochips, autonomous robots and such. For this option,  think of yourself as someone who has been asked to prepare a white paper on this technology and explore the possible legal/societal/policy implications, including recommendations for policy makers. For this option, you should research the technology–does it exist now, even in development? If not, are there similar technologies in development/existence and summarize the technology in the real world. You will also want to exploring the current “public” debates around the ethics of the technology addressing the pros and cons.