This optional assignment is available to students with a B- or less for their overall grade. The assignment will be graded. Outstanding assignments will enable students to raise their overall course grade by as much as 1/3 of a grade (e.g., from a B- to a B; from a C+ to a B-, etc.); note that simply doing the assignment does not guarantee this - the resulting work must be of very high quality.
Assignment: For standard research topics, complete the following. For non-standard topics or functional prototyping, discuss your requirements with the instructor.
1 - Select a research topic and have it approved by the instructor. The topic may be from the list below or one that you propose.
2 - Research your topic using at least 3 traditional references in addition to the course text/slides and other than web pages (you are welcome to cite web pages as well, but you need to use at least three traditional references such as other textbooks, conference/journal papers, technical reports, etc.). All references must be properly cited and listed in a bibliography.
3 - Write a 4-6 page summary about your topic (single spaced, 1" margins, 10-12 pt font; 4+ pages of text, separate cover page and separate page for bibliography). You MUST submit this in hardcopy to the instructor by the final deadline; there will be no extensions. I generally would expect to see a small number of appropriate figures - the equivalent of no more than 1 page.
For your selected topic, you are being asked to become an expert in this area; as such, determining the most important concepts to present is part of your task. That said, typical topics when discussing a component, for example, might be to present a) a motivation for why such components are used and how they functionally contribute to an overall subsystem or system with the pros/cons compared to other options, b) the fundamental theory of operation for the device (a description of how it works from a "physics" perspective - this would be critical), c) specific examples with perhaps a photo and specific performance numbers, and so on. This is just an example, and this "template" approach would vary for different types of topics - but I absolutely expect some central "fundamental" discussion relating to theory/modeling/etc no matter what your topic is. You are encouraged to discuss your outline with the instructor.
None so far
Other Possible Topics - these are just examples: