What Is the Capstone Project?
You have met the graduate admission requirements, complete your first year of studies, now you have to complete your capstone project. But what exactly is it? It is a form of research paper but unlike the usual thesis or dissertation, your project will be based on solving real-world problems rather than trying to expand the body of knowledge in your field. But just like other research papers, your capstone project requirements must be completed perfectly.
Failing to follow the capstone project guidelines could see your paper being rejected. Seeing as you must pass your capstone to gain your postgraduate qualification this is not something that you will want to happen. This is why you will want to follow our advice on how to write a capstone project.
What Are the Capstone Project Requirements?
Firstly you will need to choose your topics for capstone project writing with great care. Make the wrong choice and you may not get the end result that you were hoping for. Your topic must be:
- Achievable: you have a limited amount of time in which to complete your research and writing. Usually 2 semesters. If your project is likely to exceed this or needs resources that you do not have access to then it is not a suitable topic.
- Relevant: your project is your opportunity to show off that you are able to use your recently acquired knowledge and skills if the topic that you choose does not offer that opportunity then it is again not a suitable selection.
- Focused: you must be able to clearly define what your project is and what you hope to achieve through it. If you cannot then you may never reach a suitable end to your research.
Once you have selected your research paper titles you will then be required to write a proposal. This provides your supervisor with an opportunity to review your plans for your writing. Your proposal must show that you have made a good choice for your project and that you have a clear and achievable plan for your capstone. This must be written in the format that is requested by the program that you are following. This can vary significantly from a formal proposal paper through to a series of forms. The structure and process for approving your project must be followed precisely.
How to Write a Capstone Project
Our tips for writing a capstone project will enable you to ensure that your paper will be written with relative ease. The following must always be considered when you get to work on your capstone:
- Always carefully review the specific requirements placed on you for your writing. Every program has slightly different requirements and failing to follow them precisely could cause your paper to be rejected.
- Create a plan for your research and the writing that you will need to do. This should be a detailed plan with clear milestones for the completion of the different stages. While 2 semesters may seem like a long time it is not. Make your plan and stick to it.
- Select reliable sources for your literature research. While a capstone will focus on solving a real problem you will still be required to show your academic skills by showing the background to your work through a critical evaluation of the available existing research.
- Create an outline of your capstone paper. Some students like to simply just jump straight in with their writing; this can lead to excessive rewriting and even mistakes later on. A detailed outline at an early stage will help you to fully understand the capstone project requirements for your writing and make things much easier. A typical structure for your capstone outline is as follows:
- Title page
- The abstract (paper summary)
- Contents pages
- Problem description
- Review of literature
- Project description
- Once your writing is complete ensure that you have planned time to revise and proofread your writing. Communication is a major part of the evaluation and your paper will need to be written perfectly.