I often assign class essays that are fairly open-ended. If you need help settling upon a topic, please consider the following:
- Review the class objectives from the syllabus.
- Review your the course readings, your reading and class notes, and your reading responses. What caught your attention? What did you feel strongly about? Do you have a mystery you want to engage or an argument you want to make?
- Consider provocative, intriguing, or contentions news stories related to your interest. Do you want to understand and explain a puzzle or make an argument about a current event?
- Brainstorm a handful of ideas first, and only then consider which one or two will have the best support by way of course and external sources.
- Write a proposal for (at least) yourself and (perhaps) share it with the instructor that identifies:
- what is the topic?
- what argument/thesis are you likely to make?
- what concepts/readings from class will you make use of?
- what external readings (if appropriate) will you make use of?