Professor Güven Güzeldere uses debates extensively in several of his courses, including Philosophy of Mind, Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence, and Philosophy of Religion. The debates consist of two teams of two or three students each, presenting and defending two opposing positions on a particular philosophical question (e.g., Can we attribute genuine emotions to robots or computational systems on the basis of affect-appropriate behaviors?). Each team gets a first period for presenting, and then a second period for a rejoinder to the opposing team and their own response. The debate concludes with an open question-answer period that involves the whole class.
How do you craft a good thesis statement? In this activity, students work together to refine their ideas and put together possible evidence for different topics. The purpose is to teach students how to connect their thesis statement with the rest of their paper, and to revise the two in tandem (start with a draft thesis, bring some evidence together, revise the thesis to better reflect the evidence, revise the evidence to better fit the thesis, etc.)
This Statistics 100 project has students develop an interesting question and analyze it with either an existing dataset or an original study. Students create a poster and display their results in a setting that approximates an academic conference.