In the Social Impact Analysis (SIA) capstone paper assignment, you are given the opportunity to develop some of these forward looking skills as you analyze a leading edge design, product or concept (DPC) related to your field of study. You will be given considerable latitude in your choice of topic (it will still need to be approved). You are required to conduct the relevant, literature research necessary to understand the positive and negative implications of the design/product/concept. You are expected to consider the most credible arguments for and against your chosen topic. Finally, you will need to develop a well-reasoned position on the topic. You will need to explain why we should or should not deploy the design/product/concept you are analyzing. In developing your position, you will need to anticipate and respond to the most significant objections to it. Keep in mind that any given technology can and often does have long term psychological, financial, and social impacts over and above its immediate impacts.
While the Social Impact Analysis term paper necessarily expresses opinions on ethical issue and technical issues, invoking the phrase “in my opinion” as a preface to a statement is not sufficient to express a valid opinion. Valid opinions are supported by literature research, well-reasoned logic, critical thinking and provable facts. Otherwise these statements of opinion are a just belief expression. An opinion is “valid” if and only if it is supported by relevant facts, critical thinking and well-reasoned logic. The problem with unsupported opinions is that many are based on misconceptions.
In today’s social media environment it is extremely easy to propagate a false narrative to millions of people. When state actors (foreign countries) use identity theft to attribute a false narrative to a real person on social media it is almost impossible detect or prevent. The fact that many persons may hold the same opinion does not make it a valid opinion.
You are asked to synthesize the insights you have developed throughout this course. Specifically, you will be asked to apply one or more of the ethical theories we have discussed in this course. Additionally, you may choose to apply, in detail, the relevant canons from your discipline’s code of ethics. and insights developed from examining contemporary ethical challenges. The SIA Term Paper is the capstone assignment in this course.
The steps needed to successfully complete the SIA Capstone assignment will be found below.