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CST-489-90, Computer Studies Seminar (SP15)

INSTRUCTOR: Barbara Mento, Phone: 410-532-5591, Email: bmento@ndm.edu

SCHEDULE/DAY/TIME: Class is online at Joule. There will be weekly readings, discussions, and assignments. Students must have access to the Internet to participate in this class. The final project will be presented to the class on campus.


This course is a seminar course in which students study and discuss current moral and legal issues related to current and evolving technologies. Issues may include copyright laws, computer crime, personal rights, work environment, and invasion of privacy. Students will conduct research and create a major senior project.


* Describe how technology can reinforce or modify our cultural values

* Illustrate how computers affect how we see the world and how we interact with each other

* Characterize how communities are helped or hindered by computers

* Depict role of computers in supporting or hindering freedom, including use by the government and other institutions

* Demonstrate professional responsibilities in computer research

* Incorporate professionalism into a senior level computing project


  • Online discussion
  • Student research
  • Final Project presentation

Research paper - 20% 
Discussion- 20%
Computer project - 60%


Morality & Laws in Cyberspace, Spinello, 5th edition, Jones and Bartlett publisher, ISBN 97814496


Students must have Internet access, either from home or by using the college computer labs.


Students are expected to participate in online class discussion and activities.


-Research Paper:

-Five page double-spaced typed paper plus title page, bibliography with at least 3 references from reliable computer journals and web resources (educational institutions, government reports, and computer journals.)

-Online Discussion:
Students will participate in a weekly online discussion. Each student is required to: read chapter material, answer online questions, post a thoughtful question or comment online, and respond to at least 2 posted questions/comments, citing readings.

-Senior Project:

Each student will create an original computer project for a non-profit organization. Requirements include:

Part 1 Documented research with project description

Part 2 Project plan in visual format with flowchart or storyboard, data description, deliverables

Part 3 Final project - Students must be prepared to present final project on campus.