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What is a Capstone Project, and How Do You Prepare for It?

I am currently in my last semester of the MJ program at Tulane University and as a requirement to graduate you have Capstone project.

When I immediately heard this, I panicked! And then I found out it might be published, I started to sweat! The thought of my work being published and read by others instantly overwhelmed me!

I am an introvert over achiever and in my mind, I could never write something good enough or interesting enough that others would want to read or even publish. Yet, I have to write this paper in order to graduate and I have worked too hard for the past two years to let this scare me. So, I am sharing with you my process on how I am preparing to write this capstone project.

First, let me explain what a capstone project is. It is basically a final paper based on your field of study. The purpose of this project is for students to produce and show what they have learned during their academic career. This project is meant to expand students’ confidence and apply their knowledge and skills gained in the classroom. The project allows for students to answer tough questions in a real-world scenario and professional setting.

Once I understood that a capstone project is, I stopped thinking about it being published or criticizes by others. I changed my mindset and decided to focus on what is the most interesting issue that I have learned in the past two years that I want to learn more about.

I then focused on splitting my research in three categories: collaboration, professional development and realistic. Let me explain.

In the first category, collaboration, I am focusing on who can I ask for help, who knows more about the subject I do?

The second category is about my own professional development. Why does my subject interest me, what do I want to learn from this, what questions do I have, is there a problem to solve?

The last category is realistic. I can spend hours doing research, readying different papers, discussing about it, etc. Finding a realistic, real-world issue, a current issue that I can solve or get more answers to, is what this last category is really about.

I have only just started my capstone project, but I think these three categories will help me to stay focused and on track. I hope this helps you with your process in starting your capstone project.

capstone 2022 © 2022 by ilda Andaluz is licensed under CC BY-ND 4.0

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