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Writing Topics

WOU faculty have curated ten possible topics your WP courses. They cover a range of current issues that offer students an opportunity to engage with a real and meaningful exigence and enter into an ongoing conversation. Every few years, we strive to update the readings and topics based on teacher and student interests.

Please note, the suggested topics are just that, suggestions. Students are welcome to pursue any topic that fits within the chosen theme. They are also very broad, so if students chose one they will need to work with their teacher to narrow them to something appropriate for their research project.


Topic 1: Sustainability & the Environment

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Climate change
  • Energy and supply of resources
  • How we produce our food
  • How we deal with trash and throwing things away
  • Animal rights and threats of extinction
  • Preservation of wilderness spaces
  • Destruction of rainforests

Topic 2: Gender

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Workplace inequalities in gender
  • Rape culture on college campuses
  • Gender representations in popular culture
  • Gender identity

Topic 3: Identity & Race

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • LGBTQIA+
  • Language and how it shapes who we are
  • Body image and stereotyping
  • Native sovereignty and American citizenship

Topic 4: Economic Justice

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Who is poor and who isn’t poor (the distribution of wealth)
  • Consequences of poverty
  • The ethics of capitalism
  • Alternatives to capitalism
  • Affordability of higher education
  • What has COVID taught us about the possibilities within K-12 and higher education?

 

Topic 5: Medical Issues

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Prescription medication cost
  • What counts as a mental health issue
  • The ethical limits of medical research
  • Medicare for all/access to healthcare
  • Anti-Vax
  • Race & racism in medical care

Topic 6: Privacy & Freedoms

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Social networks and access to personal information
  • Online tracking
  • Government surveillance
  • Big data
  • How does constant surveillance impact our freedom?

Topic 7: Science

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Science denial: flat-earthers, anti-vaxers, climate change deniers
  • What kinds of problems is science suited to solve?
  • How might space exploration solve or exacerbate problems on Earth?
  • The danger of disinformation and scientific advancement and disease control

Topic 8: Borders & Migration

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • The economic consequences of increased immigration
  • Are there problems with illegal immigration?
  • What moral obligations do we have to refugees?
  • The need (or not) for borders

Topic 9: Voting & Democracy

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Is the electoral college beneficial to a functioning democracy?
  • Voter suppression and its effects of free elections
  • Democracy in the workplace
  • Should students be able to vote on what classes they have to take?

Topic 10: Criminal Justice

On Demand Readings

Suggested Topics

  • Mass incarceration in America
  • Prison abolition or prison alternatives
  • Effects of police militarization
  • The role for police in a free society
  • Police in our schools