You should use the first part of the term to consider possible topics and to choose a peer editor. Your peer editor must be an 8.06 student, and must be someone whose own 8.06 paper topic is unrelated to yours. A list of suggested topics is given below, but you are free to choose topics not on this list upon first obtaining Prof. Zwiebach’s approval.
To aid you in your research efforts, there will be two library sessions with the MIT Library Liaison for the Physics Department. The Library Liaison will help you identify relevant online and print references.
Your proposal is due on in your Wednesday recitation section during week 8 and must be submitted electronically by 12:00 noon. This must consist of: a title, a one paragraph description of what you plan to write about, an outline of your proposed paper, a list of several references you plan to use, the name of your peer editor, and your name and email address.
You will then be contacted by one of the writing assistants. You and your peer editor will have the same writing assistant. They may either accept your proposal, or request that you revise it in response to their suggestions. You and your peer editor must arrange to meet with your writing assistant as soon as possible (even if they accept your proposal).
There is a peer editing session your Wednesday recitation section during week 10. At that time, you and your peer reviewer will exchange drafts and make constructive, written comments on each other’s work. (We will cancel recitation on that day in order to make time for the peer editing session.) The quality of the term papers improve dramatically from peer comments, so it is recommended that you implement their suggestions before submitting your first draft. To demonstrate that you participated in the peer editing session, you should submit a copy of your peer editing comments for grading.
Your first draft is due on Friday in week 10, when you will submit a pdf version electronically. Each of you, together with your peer editor, should then meet with your writing assistant by by the end of week 11 in order to obtain their comments on your first draft. You will get your first drafts back when you meet with your writing assistant.
A hard copy of your final, polished paper, printed using the RevTeX final, two-column options is due by Friday of week 12, when a pdf version should be submitted electronically. Think of this as submitting your paper to the 8.06 Physical Review, and our “publisher” will assemble the pdf files into a bound document.