The Senior Social Science Seminar is a capstone experience for all majors. One of the purposes of the seminar is to bring together students in the various majors in the department to examine the implications and interrelations of their studies.
The seminar includes reading and discussion in conjunction with preparation for the presentation of a senior paper. The Senior Social Science paper may be used toward the completion of a Human Issues project. An approved Senior Paper/Human Issues Project Proposal should be developed with the academic advisor before the beginning of the semester that the student is enrolled in the seminar (SS 484).
Senior Seminar/Human Issues Completion Proposal Form
Student Professional Advancement Grant Form
Senior Paper & Human Issues Requirements
The Senior Paper should be a capstone project which shows your accomplishment in the academic discipline of your major, and your ability to gather data, do analysis, and report your findings in a clear and effective manner.
You are encouraged to build upon some work you have already begun in another class or through personal interest. This is the opportunity to go deeper into the subject, use updated materials or link course work and personal research. Do not feel that you should start from scratch on a new project. Pick something that you care about—you're going to be living with it pretty intensely for a while.
You will want to develop a thesis or position on the topic. General description is acceptable only if your project involves some original work, in which case your creative abilities are demonstrated in the capturing of new information more so than in traditional papers based on the research of others. Since many of the senior papers of students in the Social Sciences relate closely to the kind of projects expected for the Human Issues requirement, you may integrate the Senior Paper with the completion of the Human Issues project.
There are a few caveats, however:
- Senior Papers intended to be used for Human Issues must go beyond the expectations of a Senior Paper required for the major and meet the criteria for the Human Issues requirement (see the Human Issues website or class handouts). This means that the paper must reflect more than one perspective (discipline and/or lived experience); it can't be just a straight Sociology paper, for example. It means that you must discuss the values surrounding the topic you choose. And it means that you must show your engagement with the topic personally, possibly in the form of some recommendations or reflections.
- Since the Human Issues Project is to reflect a sustained experience, it is very important that your paper be built on work that you have begun prior to the semester in which you are enrolled in SS 484. It is very unlikely that you would be able to construct an adequate Human Issues project in one semester.
- Ideally, you have completed a Senior Seminar/Human Issues Completion Proposal form with your advisor. If you are enrolled in SS 484 and have not completed this form, see the seminar instructor immediately to make arrangements.
The Social Science Department will consider making funds available to Edgewood College Social Science students to offset some costs related to the development or presentation of their research. Funds can be requested by completing a Request for Student Professional Advancement Grant form. All papers will be evaluated by the course instructor and receive a grade reflecting fulfillment of the Social Science requirement. Papers submitted as completion of Human Issues will receive a Pass-Fail notification from the seminar instructor.
This is your opportunity to do a personally-satisfying, creative, professional project which you can put into your portfolio as an example of your best undergraduate work