I have a really stupid, poorly designed paper assigned to me that I have to write, please help me with it.
November 20, 2010 4:39 PM Subscribe
I have a really stupid, poorly designed paper assigned to me that I have to write. Please help me with it.
posted by bookman117 to education (40 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Okay, so I'm a college freshman, and one of the classes I'm taking right now is a writing class. The current paper we have to write is worth 25% of our grade, and the original assignment was to think of something we might want to contribute to our field of study, research it, and write a paper about it. The idea was that it would be kind of like a mini PhD thesis paper or something. However, since everybody in my class is a STEM major (I'm a CS major), and thus it would be kinda impossible for us to actually understand anything at the PhD level at this point, the professor modified the assignment to just a paper describing a career path we might see ourselves doing in the future, and why doing this would be important to society. It has to be between 1250-1500 words, use three scholarly sources and two popular sources, and three of the sources have to be quoted in the paper. I am intrigued by the field of computer security, specifically with regards to hacktivism, "cyberterrorism", cyberweapons and national security. Things that have caught my attention have been the Chinese hack into top American defense contractors a while back, the Stuxnet virus, Wikileaks, the Anonymous protests against Scientology, net neutrality, and the concept of digital rights. I realize that computer security is only very tangentially related to some of those things if at all, but I'm a believer in the idea that true political change in this country through ordinary means is impossible and thus more direct methods are necessary, and I honestly believe hacking and illegally obtaining sensitive information of for example dual-loyal backstabbing lobbies such as AIPAC and disseminating it over the Internet for everybody to see is the best chance our country has. Anyway, I'm hoping to get a BS in computer science and then a master's in the field with a focus on computer security, maybe doing a little gray hacking along with way to gain experience and a professional reputation. I checked out a few books from the campus library dealing with computer security and national security, and the easiest thing to do may well be just to write a paper detailing how making the nets more secure and under control is important to national security, but I really don't wanna spend 1250 words writing a bunch of bullshit that I don't believe in. Anyway, i have no earthly idea how to turn all this into a paper, and I'm really friggin' lost. The guy who's assigning this is teaching at my university for the first time and said that "okay, I was thinking more in terms of the humanities when I wrote this assignment." Given that I kinda disagree with the whole notion that STEM majors should have to take writing classes on the grounds that they need to become more "well-rounded" anyway, this really kinda pissed me off. Liberal arts people are more supportive of that whole idea than anybody, given how much of a difference the humanities makes in changing people's prejudices and preconceived notions and attitudes and all, and here's some idiot who forgot that some fields are too difficult to understand at age 19. Anyway, does anybody out there have any advice?