Research Essay – Robots and/or artificial intelligence in relation to..

Humanities

The notes on how to complete this assignment are found within the research module. However, here are the relevant portions of the assignment. As mentioned in class, you have one very broad topic to research. You may write about anything that relates to either robots, robotics, and/or artificial intelligence.

For this paper, you need to explore one very narrow, very specific slice of the vast technological pie out there. Now, some of these topics will work for a research essay and some will not. Most, if not all of them, are still too broad and would need to be narrowed to make an effective essay. Here are some topics to consider (all of which need to be narrowed in order to make this paper work).

Robots and/or artificial intelligence in relation to:

  1. Healthcare
  2. Companions
  3. Manufacturing
  4. Transportation
  5. Human identity
  6. Religion
  7. Warfare
  8. Law/rights
  9. Spying
  10. Advertising
  11. Social media
  12. other topics that may interest you

Essentially, you want to pick a question, narrow it to something that you can answer in the space to which you are confined (five to seven pages, not including your works cited page and a formal outline). You must include – use and cite – at least three different kinds of sources for this research paper; and, of course, they all need to be cited properly using MLA 8th edition guidelines. Please consider using one of the handouts given out in class — or found on this Canvas site — as one of your sources. Some other possibilities for sources include:

  • The Internet (perhaps Google Scholar)
  • Books
  • Periodicals/articles
  • Interviews with expert authorities
  • Films
  • Museum displays and literature
  • Online/Library databases

Formatting:

All papers must have the following characteristics:

1) Double-spaced, typed.

2) Use a sans-serif font such as Ariel or Calibri.

3) 12 point height.

4) Follow consistent MLA 8th edition formatting.

5) Submitted via our Canvas class site.

6) Length: 5-7 pages, not including a Works Cited page or any appendices.

7) A Works Cited page.

8) A formal outline, submitted as a separate assignment.

9) Evidence of peer-review turned in to the teacher.

Papers that do not follow these guidelines will not be read or graded
Research essays generally fall into one of two categories: analytical or persuasive. They are NOT merely explanatory, although explanation plays a large part in either category of paper.

The basic idea is to delve deeply into a topic, then convey what you’ve found to your reader — but you must add your own, original thoughts to your paper. You cannot simply regurgitate what you’ve found, so you must think about what you’re discovering and come to your own conclusions. Sharing your analysis and synthesis of ideas makes your paper original.

Outline: As mentioned in class, I’m a big believer in outlines. They organize your thinking and writing and give you a snapshot of your ideas on paper. You can visually see the flow of ideas and the supports. Personally, I think you should put together an outline before writing anything to turn in for a grade. Let me give you an example that I came across a while back (it’s not mine but I cannot tell who created it. Alas.)

Thesis: Although fast food may be tasty and convenient, people should refrain from eating fast food because it replaces food that has nutritional value, it contains many harmful ingredients, and it encourages a hectic and family-fracturing lifestyle.

I. Substitute for healthy food.

A. Limited choices

1. becomes predictable and boring

2. discourages culinary exploration

3. dulls the imagination

B. Unbalanced diet

1. few and limited vegetables

2. no fruit

3. no whole grains

C. Few nutrients

1. few vitamins

2. few minerals

II. Unhealthy

A. Insufficient nutrient complications

1. skin rashes

2. fragile bones

3. susceptible to colds, flu

B. Unhealthy ingredients

1. carcinogens

2. high cholesterol

3. trans fats

C. Resulting health risks

1. obesity

2. heart disease

3. cancer

4. diabetes

III. Unsatisfactory lifestyle

A. Decentralizes the family

1. replaces home-based meals

2. reduces time spent with family

3. leads to relationship breakdowns

B. Encourages a hectic lifestyle

1. rushed intake of food

2. improper digestion

3. insufficient relaxation

4. nervous breakdowns

As you can see from this outline, you know what message the author is trying to get across to the reader (that’s the thesis). And, you know what ideas will be presented in which order. It’s brief, consisting mostly of phrases rather than sentences. It’s the skeletal framework for the discussion (the essay) to follow.


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