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Social Networking

Social Networking

Social Networking


This assignment has two goals: 1) have students increase their understanding of the concept of Protecting Personal Information (PPI) and other ethical issues related to the use of information technology through research, and 2) learn to correctly incorporate citations and references in APA format. Students may use the tools and techniques within Word to format the research paper, including use of the References and citation tools. These skills will be valuable throughout a student’s academic career. The paper will require a title page, NO abstract, three to four full pages of content with incorporation of a minimum of 3 external resources from credible sources and a Works Cited/References page. Wikipedia and similar general information sites, blogs or discussion groups are not considered creditable sources for a research project. No more than 10% of the paper may be in the form of a direct citation from an external source.


A list of topics from which students can choose is provided below.

Topics for Research Paper



Social Engineering – what it is, how it is used, and potential positive and negative impacts on individuals and on society
Employee Monitoring – why and how it is used, the legal issues surrounding its use, and impacts on employer and employee
Biometrics – various implementations and the ethical and privacy issues related to the use of biometrics
Use of Cookies – what they are, how they are used, and potential positive and negative impacts
What are the privacy laws related to Information Technology use and how do they impact you personally?
Intellectual Property Rights; issues related to copyright, fair use, copyright infringement, and the potential personal and financial impacts
7. The Edward Snowden case – the dilemma between the “Official Secrets Act” versus a perceived duty to share versus the damage it may do to national security.

8. The Apple vs. FBI controversy over unlocking the iPhone



If there is another topic that addresses ethical issues as related to information technology that is of special interest to you but one that is not in the list above, request permission from your instructor before selecting this alternate topic.


Writing Quality for the Research Paper

* All Grammar, Verb Tenses, Pronouns, Spelling, Punctuation, and Writing Competency should be without error.


* Be particularly careful about mis-matching a noun and pronoun. For example, if you say “A person does this…” then do not use “their” or “they” when referring to that person. “Person” is singular; “their” or “they” is plural.


* Remember: there is not their, your is not you’re, its is not it’s, too is not to or two, site is not cite, and who should be used after an individual, not that. For example, “the person WHO made the speech” not “the person THAT made the speech.”


* In a professional paper one does not use contractions (doesn’t, don’t, etc.) and one does not use the personal I, you or your. Use the impersonal as in the previous sentence. It is more business-like to say “In a professional paper one should not use contractions,” rather than saying, “In a professional paper you don’t use contractions.”

*Remember: spell-check, then proofread. Better yet, have a friend or colleague read it before submitting it. Read it out loud to yourself. Read it as if you are submitting it to your boss.


You can find instructions on how to use the References tool in Word on a PC or on a Mac in the separate file attached here.


Complete rubrics for this paper are found in the table on the next page.


Element #


Points Allocated



Paper should be
– double-spaced,
– margins are set to 1” (left, right, top bottom),
– 12 point Arial type is used for all text
– headings, if used, are bold but in 12 point Arial type


This is the font in normal paragraphs. Heading and title fonts may be in bold, but should remain in 12 point font.


Body of the paper is at least three full pages and does not exceed five typed, double-spaced pages. The 3- 5 pages does not include the title and reference pages and these are not included in the page count of the body of the paper.


Charts and other graphical information are not included in the page count.


Title Page which shows title of the paper and the author’s (student’s) name. The title and author’s name should be centered horizontally and vertically on the title page. The title and author’s name should appear in the center of the page.


Title must be appropriate for content


At least three (3) APA formatted in-text citations.


If you are not familiar with APA format, it is recommended that you use the References feature in Word for your citations and Reference List or refer to the “Citing and Writing” option under the Resources/Library/Get Help area in the LEO classroom.


It is important to review the final format for APA-style correctness even if generated by Word.


These can be anywhere in the document, but the citations must be relevant to what is being referenced and the APA format is used correctly.


At least two (2) informational footnotes.


(Note: APA Style does not use footnotes for citations; however, APA style does allow for the incorporation of informational footnotes)

Footnotes are not used to list a reference! Footnotes contain information about the topic to which the footnote has been attached.


These can be anywhere in the document, but the informational footnotes must be relevant to the associated text. The purpose of this requirement is to effectively incorporate the information and demonstrate that you can use the MS Word footnoting functionality.


References Page using APA format for references. The References must be on a separate page from the body of the paper.


If you are not familiar with APA format, it is recommended that you use the References feature in Word for your citations and Reference List or refer to the “Citing and Writing” option under the Resources/Library/Get Help area in the LEO classroom.

It is important to review the final format for APA-style correctness even if generated by Word.


All works listed must be incorporated within the writing of your paper as specified in APA style


Describe the topic and ethical issue as it relates to the use of Information Technology




Discuss the trends and ways individuals and/or organizations are impacted by the issue or are working to prevent the impact.




Paper must be well-organized, clearly written in a style appropriate for college level work.




Paper should be grammatically correct and contain no spelling errors.


Although you should use the Spell Check and Grammar Check function in Word, this will not catch all errors – you are ultimately responsible for proofreading. Direct citations should not exceed 10% of total words (use Word’s ‘word count’ function)






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