A final option for the senior project is CS294, the directed research classes. If you'd like to take part in active research but don't have a specific project in mind or would like some guidance, CS294 might be for you. The class is typically focused on a single large project of the professor's interest. People choose or are assigned parts of the larger project to work on for the quarter. For example, in the past, CS294 students contributed to the award-winning DARPA Grand Challenge robot. The topics for CS294 change each year, though it's frequently been led by an AI professor. Professors may expect students to be comfortable with techniques used in the field. For example, an AI CS294 might expect you to have taken CS221. Like CS191, students can opt to do a writing-intensive version (CS294W) that fulfills the WIM requirement.
Other typical questions might be about why so much of the Odyssey is about Odysseus’ return to Ithaca, rather than the adventures at sea that everyone remembers, or whether Achilles or Hector is the real hero of the Iliad ? It really depends on what the applicant says they have read. We’re looking for candidates to be able to pick out details in the text that support the argument they want to make - and opposing arguments, too. The questions allow us to see whether candidates are open-minded and able to see how others, both today and, crucially, in the ancient world, might put the evidence from the texts together to draw different conclusions. And we would hope that candidates would think about how, although literary texts often encourage us to react to their characters as if they were real people, actually these characters are constructed by an author, and what we see of them always reflects that author’s choices.