CS 391: Social and Ethical Issues in Computer Science
Oregon State University, College of Engineering
Chapter 1 ~ Prepare to Succeed
Complete Chapter 1 right away...it will prepare you for the rest of the term.
OSU's College of Engineering is pleased to welcome you to Social and Ethical Issues in Computer Science,
which provides an in-depth exploration of the social, psychological, political, and ethical issues
surrounding the computer industry using a variety of research, writing, and collaboration activities
which meet BACC Science, Technology and Society (STS) synthesis requirements.
You'll explore ethical theories, the balance of power, hiring and marketing problems, the journey of a device, and ethical dilemmas.
The overall goal is to improve your decision-making in the workplace of your future.
Start the following activities on the first day of the term; they are due very soon! (Check Canvas for dates and times.)
To get started, click the + Orange headlines below.
Complete each numbered 1.* lesson in this chapter
before the Due date.
Due dates are listed in the Canvas Home or Assignments area and Calendar.
⬆ Shiftrefresh Shift-Refresh this page to see the most up-to-date instructions.
From the Canvas Account area,
choose Settings. Notice that your OSU email address is already connected.
You may add your personal email address here, however, the University does not recommend using personal addresses when
communicating about university-related topics or assignments.
Check your email daily to read important course announcements, discussion replies, and grading comments.
Click the Account button then Notifications button.
Activate all these options:
Due Date, Announcements, Grading, Submission Comment, Discussion Post, and Inbox Conversation.
Contact me using the Inbox
when you have questions.
If you email me from outside Canvas, then your message might look like spam.
Write to me from inside Canvas for the fastest response.
The person icon on this textbook's main menu above is also a quick way to get to the Inbox.
1.2 Learn about this course's Canvas functions.
Click on the Announcements button to see weekly or bi-weekly messages from the instructor.
These will introduce and make clarifications about the project. Read them before you write the instructor with questions.
In some cases you can reply to the Announcement to ask clarifying questions.
Everyone will see the answer to your question.
To use the Announcement Discussion, see Discussion instructions, below.
Click on the Assignment button to see a list of Chapter Assignments and Pages.
An Assignment includes these components:
Link the Chapter web page.
Summary of topics.
Available until date (grace period).
Submit, TurnItIn Load, or other button.
File attachment link.
View Rubric button.
Once you submit an assignment, look for the confirmation message:
If you need to resubmit, submit an additional file, or comment on a submission, then click the Submission Details option.
Click the Grades button to view instructor feedback.
A few days after each assignment is due, read the instructor and/or TA's feedback in the Grades or Assignment area.
It provides a Rubric icon for viewing your score on each criterion and allows you to ask questions.
Click the Assignment Name to respond to instructor feedback.
If you want to ask a question about your score, click on the assignment name to reveal the feedback and
write your comment in the box provided.
Once you click the assignment name, you'll see the feedback.
The comment box is under the feedback.
Using this box notifies the instructor and is the fastest way to get a response.
Uncheck the Calculate button
to ensure you see the actual grade based on your scores.
View the Coming Up menu. It lists the assignments coming up in the current week.
Notice the due dates so you'll never be late again.
Click the Calendar button.
The Calendar shows all of your courses' due dates.
Click one course on and off on the right to see one at a time or all of them.
Notice that they are color-coded.
Use the calendar with your name on it to add your own time management events,
such as project start dates,
club meetings, and
class and work times.
Add the calendar's feed of due dates to your preferred calendar app by clicking the
Calendar Feed link at the lower right of Canvas Calendar screen.
Copy the link provided then add it to your calendar:
In Microsoft Outlook's tab, choose
Paste the Canvas Calendar Feed URL and submit.
In the Calendar app on your Mac, > .
Paste the Canvas Calendar URL and adjust the name, color, and other options on the next screen.
In Google Calendar, click the plus + symbol next to the or
Add the URL you copied from Canvas and paste it into the field.
Click Add calendar.
View the class roster in the People area. Find people here to form study groups if you like.
Use NetTutor when you need to have your writing reviewed.
If you are a poor writer of English, then use this service to improve your work each week.
Projects using poor English writing will get marked down,
so take advantage of tutors via NetTutor, the OSU Writing Center,
or your program's own writing support.
Discussions have some useful features:
At the top there is a set of Instructions.
The Rubric can be found by clicking the 3-dot menu on the top right.
The search bar allows you to search for a keyword, key phrase, or student in the long list of threads (which will appear once others have posted).
Below that, you'll see a Reply box. You'll click it to create a new thread where you can paste in writing, or write from scratch.
When you want to reply to someone else's thread, use the Reply button under that student's thread, rather than the first one.
This provides conversation continuity.
Notice that you can expand and collapse each of the other students' threads.
Hover over the middle top of the thread to see an arrow appear. This allows you to open just one thread at a time when they are all collapsed.
When editing a thread, notice that you can:
Make numbered or bulleted lists, add bold, italic, color, floating, etc. These features work when you have text selected.
To make a hyperlinked article title, select the title, click the link icon, then paste source's URL.
Click the person_pinInstructor button, which launches the Canvas Inbox.
button to launch a chat session with a librarian. This service is available 24/7.
Click the homeHome button to read the introduction.
Other important news or links may be provided here.
Click the infoSyllabus button and read it thoroughly.
Click the library_booksChapter buttons to work on each week/module's requirements.
This week's objectives lists the major lessons of the chapter and allow you to jump down to them.
Red messages are...important; read them. ;-)
+ Orange headlines can be opened to reveal
blue numbered lessons and closed to shorten the content for scrolling and printing.
1.5 Choose a listening tool.
If you are an auditory learner, or your eyes are tired, I recommend listening to the course materials and readings to help improve information retention.
Set up your computer now so you can listen to the remaining sections of this page.
Choose the Chrome extension first. If you don't like it, then use a built-in option for your laptop, desktop, or try a phone app.
Click the 3-dot menu at the top right of the Chrome browser window, then choose More Tools.
Choose Extensions from the popup list.
Scroll to the bottom of your list of extensions (if any) on the left to click on Get More Extensions or Open Chrome Web Store.
Search for Select and Speak
and add it to Chrome. The
will show up in the Chrome Extension Toolbar to the right of the Address/Search box.
Test the voice on a selection of text provided in the options, or in a browser tab.
Right-click on the icon to choose . If you are able to, change languages/accents, volume, and other settings.
From the menu, choose then .
Click the option.
Choose a new voice from the System Voice dropdown menu. If you like Siri's voice, choose Samantha.
Use the Optionesc keystroke provided, or choose a new one.
Test the voice on a selection of text in a browser tab.
Follow instructions for set-up and use of Speech/Text-to-Speech and the Narrator controls:
To read an entire window, click the window and then press CtrlShiftspacebar.
To silence the speech, press Ctrl.
Test the voice on a selection of text in a browser tab.
Alternatively, try the Natural Reader application for your Windows phone. UNTESTED; use at your own risk.
1.6 Access Library Services.
Some projects will require library research.
Contact a librarian for help if your search is taking more than 15 minutes.
Get familiar with these two options:
The OSU Valley Library
Answerland 24/7 library chat service
Before asking for help, formulate specific questions that describe the area of research you're trying to locate so that
the Librarian will be able to provide a targeted response.
Choose more than one method of contact to ask very specific questions
(but do not ask two different librarians to answer the same question).
If you don't know how to use the Library's databases, then consult with librarians to learn how!
The following bibliographic tools will help you track and properly cite articles, images, and movies to use in each of the assignments.
If you already use a tool you like, then you don't need to set up another one.
If you have never tracked sources with an app, you are required to try one of the following options.
It will save you a lot of time!
Using an app will also keep your computer from crashing due to too many browser tabs being active simultaneously.
It doesn't matter which style you use for each bibliography (IEEE, MLA, APA, etc.)
but each one must include:
author last name,
author first name,
page number (optional),
and the URL.
Here is an example:
Desjardins, Jeff. 2016. "The Extraordinary Raw Materials In An Iphone 6S". Visual Capitalist. https://www.visualcapitalist.com/extraordinary-raw-materials-iphone-6s/.
If a source does not have an author, use the title.
If a source lacks a date, use the copyright date of the web page or publication (usually found in the footer).
If a source is not online, then a URL is not required.
1.8 Learn to use the Explore Topics Templates.
Use the following template link to complete this research and writing assignment.
It is similar to templates required in future chapters.
Do not request permission to use the file. Login to your OSU Google Account.
Once you have the file open:
Rename the new file so it includes your "First and Last name" in place of "Template".
Move the file into a folder for this course.
Notice that we're using a Google Slide presentation file rather than a word processing file.
Each slide will be referred to as a page because we will be writing in formal research style
(rather than watered-down phrases with little meaning).
Add your name to the cover page.
Read instructions on the cover page. When in doubt about how to write in the templates, refer back to this page for clarification.
Notice the green instructions below each page.
Drag the notes pane up so you can read all of its text.
These are the reading/research and writing prompts that you must adhere to.
Be sure that you can read all of them before you begin the work so you don't miss any requirements.
Once you open the template, it will refer to articles or research you need to complete.
Keep both the template and the articles open simultaneously.
Most pages require research.
The last page requires a bibliography.
Reading List (open each article in a new browser tab):
1.9 Edit, download, and submit the Explore Topics file.
Ctrlc or ⌘c Copy the bibliographic entries you made
during the Explore Topics reading and research.
On the last page of the template, Ctrlv or ⌘v paste in the bibliographic entries.
Select the list and apply the bullet or numbered list icon.
Update the font size to 14 if necessary.
Add more pages if necessary.
Check and correct grammar and spelling using the built-in functions.
From the menu, choose Download as PDF.
Check to confirm that hyperlinks work in the new PDF file.
If they do not work, then in the Assignment Commenting Box,
leave a note stating which platform, operating system, and browser you used to print or download the PDF file.
Copy of the file to a backup folder on your hard drive.
Submit the PDF file by uploading it in the Canvas Assignment screen.
Confirm that your file has uploaded by looking for the document icon in the Grades area.
Examine cases of modern learning techniques to write/discuss from a factual and critical perspective.
1.10 Participate in the Group Discussion
Groups will not be assigned until the official second day of class.
Please wait to submit your intial thread until the third day to avoid having to copy it
from one group to another.
Four days before the Due date,
start writing in a word processing document to
introduce yourself and synthesize what you learned about modern learning:
In paragraph 1, describe where you are from (without giving away private data).
In paragraph 2, name the degree you are seeking and the type of job you hope to land when you graduate.
In paragraph 3, describe at least three concepts you hope to learn about in this course.
Hint 1: what specific ethical issues relate to your degree or area of focus?
Hint 2: what course topics are interesting to you?
Read the following article about modern learning
and in paragraph 4, synthesize what you discovered:
Modern Learning ~ Van Londen, Pam, OSU 2020
Google's search box has become a powerful dictionary over the last several years. You can type: define [word] and
get an instant answer! Ask Google to define learning and it'll tell you that it is,
"the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience and study..."
In the class, you'll do just that...gain knowledge through experience and study...
it won't be poured into you via lectures or an expensive textbook.
Instead, you'll discover important answers by searching, reading, writing,
learning new technical skills, and responding to others' threads in discussion.
These tasks will allow you to
think critically to inform your decisions and opinions.
In Richard Baraniuk's (Rice University), TED Talk, The birth of the open-source learning revolution (2006),
he recommends we "cut out the middleman of textbook publishing" and instead, create a "knowledge ecosystem"
where we can become our own "educational DJs."
Baraniuk's teaching philosophy, which I share, is that teaching is about creating "interconnection of ideas."
I guide students through a process where they discover new concepts themselves through research.
When students broaden or narrow their searches to meet a set of guidelines or requirements, they are connecting ideas.
When they write about those new ideas in their own words, they are synthesizing that material.
This form of learning may induce struggle or take more time, but it ensures students retain what they learned, as noted by Carol Dweck on Struggle.
To merely learn a fact so you can choose it on an exam is low-level learning.
(Refer to Iowa State's
Bloom's Taxonomy for levels of learning.)
Employers in your future will want you to take limitations, look at them from many sides, evaluate,
and communicate them in a professional manner. So that is what we'll practice in this course.
The role of a teacher is to arrange victories for the students
Marcus Fabius Quintilianus, Roman Rhetorician
As an online instructor, my job is to facilitate this learning process. I've provided experiences to jump-start the work of researching
devices, history, events, people, companies, tragedies, buzzwords, laws, acts, and countries, etc.
The experiences (projects) will be what John Green, author of
Nerd's guide to learning everything online, refers to as not a set of "arbitrary hurdles but points on a map to see more maps."
I will provide a map and you will find more maps!
In a 2011 study, Designing for Productive Failure,
authors Kapur and Bielaczyc determined that there is a "hidden efficacy" when groups solve problems together.
They begin to understand not just correct solutions, but the structure of solutions, and they outperform those that participated in overly prescribed teachings.
This notion that students working together to solve problems is better than the standard lecture/test format is why I've structured the course the way I have.
Can you Crowdsource Learning?
I like the idea that students create content that is meaningful to them.
In some of my courses, you will share your writing, collaborate and review others' writings to improve it, then analyze the major issues in discussion.
I call this crowdlearning. In some of my other courses, you'll be encouraged to learn skills together...side by side.
This option allows immediate feedback when you need clarification.
In 2008, Jeff Howe coined the phrase Crowdsourcing and talks about its power in,
Why the Power of Crowdsourcing is Driving the Future of Business.
Crowdsourcing takes the notion of open-source
and applies it to any field outside of computer science, such as research and reporting by journalists, scientists, and other authors.
A company called Crowdlearn uses the notion as their business model. Other startups are following their lead. Crowdlearning has become a common way to learn.
How education is delivered and received is changing rapidly and many students prefer the new ways of learning, such as
through crowdlearning, TED talks, Khan Academy, and Code School. Or by working together with others to solve a problem...making new discoveries.
About 10 years ago, I heard about the Minimally Invasive Education (MIE) pedagogy created by Dr. Sugat Mitra.
His delivery system for MIE is the Hole-in-the Wall Education Project (HIWEP), wherein under-served communities are
provided a computer in a public wall area, so that anyone can step up to the wall and
learn whatever they want. Students began to teach themselves and each other.
"That children could learn on their own, was something not many people would have imagined and that too in such a
cost-effective manner with benefits like improved group dynamics..." (Mitra 2007)
This project now has computers in walls in more than 24 locations in India and Cambodia.
The initial 4-year study shows improvement in not only test scores, but the assimilation of concepts.
The idea of minimally invasive education is important to me. You'll learn from each other and from many other experts...less so from me.
I don't feel that my personal biases are needed for you to succeed in this class, so you won't see me interacting with the group in discussions.
In the 13 years I have been teaching online, I have seen how students teach students quite well without my
interference. Your interactions with other students is an effective way to learn a lot of new material.