20th Century

Short Paper Topics

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Decade 1 – windshield wipers (Matt)

Decade 2 – tank (Jonathan)

Decade 3 – Technicolor (Mae)

Decade 4 – stereo records (LPs) (Chace)

Decade 5 – kidney dialysis machine (Alex)

Decade 6 – McDonald’s (Andrea)

Decade 7 – Barcode scanner (Paul)

Decade 8 – Jarvik-7 (artificial heart) (Chardé)

Decade 9 – Prozac (LaToya)

Decade 10 – DVD (Chris)


Each student will write one out-of-class paper on a technology topic.  Incorporate practical or theoretical considerations from any of the course readings or from outside sources.  The out-of-class paper must be word-processed and NO LESS than three (3) but NO MORE than four (4) double-spaced pages of text (not including the required title page and Works Cited page) with one-inch margins (right, left, top, bottom).  In addition to the quality of analytical content, grammar, spelling, syntax, etc., will count substantially.


Specific instructions:  Use at least three sources.  Of those sources, one should be a website, one a book, and one an article (either paper or electronic).  More than three sources may be used as long as at least three meet the above criteria.  All sources should be cited in correct MLA style, using parenthetical citations and a Works Cited page.  Information in the paper should include the following:


When did the invention take place?

Who was (were) the inventor(s)?

Why did the invention take place?

Who was the target audience?

Is the invention still in use in its original form today?

What were the positive features?

Were there negative impacts on society?

What, if any, changes or improvements have been made to the invention since its discovery?

How has the invention impacted your life?


20th Century