A capstone project is a course designed to demonstrate the key learning objectives that a student is expected to have learned throughout their course of study. This will include an assessment of the College defined Core Competencies and course content.
Advantages of a capstone project:
Assessment of the student’s cumulative abilities within the context of the course.
Students demonstrate how they can integrate the knowledge, abilities, and values that faculty have been teaching or demonstrating.
Illustrates self-motivation and critical thinking skills, demonstrating not only knowledge, but understanding of the course elements.
Traditionally, capstone projects have been primarily student-centered, with the majority of work done with minimal direct supervision from the instructor. There are a few common varieties of capstone projects:
The major project course: The student works on one project primarily, such as a research project, experiment or creative project.
Examples would be the website created by our Web Design students, or the multimedia capstone project created by our Media Design and Production students.
Multiple experiences or exercises course: Course is designed so that students must provide evidence through a variety or means, such as examinations, research papers, oral presentations, group work, and multimedia presentations.
Example would be our Legal Support Professional capstone.
Portfolio: Students produce a portfolio of work, and provides at least one item that is assessed.
Example: Graphic Technologies program.
Field experience or internship: Allows students to demonstrate knowledge, skills and values in a variety of ways. Evaluated by both faculty and field supervisor.
Examples: Preceptorship in the RN program, and the internship in the Environmental Sciences & Technology program.
When designing a capstone project, the following components were discussed that should be included, as a minimum. Each program will determine how these will be determined and assessed.
Capstone should be at least a 1 credit class. More common would be 3-5 credits.
Capstone will demonstrate the student’s competency in career specific skills.
Capstone will demonstrate core abilities readiness.
Student will produce some sort of written report or log.
Student will orally present finding or experience.
Evaluation mechanisms will be announced and implemented.