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What is a capstone project? If you are a fresher at college, you may not be familiar with this term, but all the senior students know it and often fear it. “The final paper”, “the complex assignment”, “the peak of the school year” are the phrases used to define a capstone project, and they are all correct. This kind of assignment really matters a lot for the final grades of every student, which is why its significance should not be underestimated. So what exactly should be included in such paper and how to compose a decent one? Keep reading, and you will discover the answers.
Capstone Project Meaning
A capstone project in high school or in college is a complex assignment that is often included in the program of the graduating year. This project includes a research, its implementation, and presentation of the results to the committee. Its main purpose is show the skills gained by the student during the course, his or her profound knowledge of the major subjects, and the ability to apply the learnt skills in a practical way. As a rule, the topic of the project is related to the student’s specialization and approved by the supervisor.
The distinctive feature of a capstone project is that it should be useful and applicable: the solely theoretical papers will not work here. The students often solve the local problems in their projects and show the real results in their presentation. Thus, this is a chance for you to demonstrate how you will use your skills of a manager, businessman, HR, etc.
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Excellent Capstone Project Ideas
Since the project takes a great deal of the final grades, it is clear that every student is worried about getting it done right. Composing a decent project and defending it in front of the professors’ board takes a lot of time, patience, persistence, and focus. Therefore, be prepared to dedicate all your attention to this project in order to succeed eventually. To make the process of writing easier and more organized, use the tips from experts listed below.
- Analyze your academic work that you have done during the past 2-3 years. Pay attention to the research papers and studies that you found engaging and that received excellent marks: they can form a good basis for your capstone project.
- Create a schedule for your work. Procrastination and poor time management is the greatest reason for losing valuable points for many students, so make sure you do not get into this trap. Plan the number of hours you can devote to writing and think of the day of the week when it will be convenient for you to do it.
- Pick a topic of your interest. It is better to stay away from the totally new spheres, as they require much more time to discover. Think of the topic that you have come across earlier.
- Find all the relevant literature. The more, the better. If you cannot read every book and article you find, at least browse them and note down the main terms and data.
- Formulate your key argument, the thesis statement. It will be a focal point of your whole project, so take your time developing this statement.
- Create an outline. Sometimes it can be rearranged in the process of writing, but in general, the outline should map out the structure of your future paper and serve as your organizer in the process of work.
- Keep drafting. You do not have to aim for the clean version right away: just keep adding ideas to every subheading of your outline, rearranging the content, and changing the structure as needed.
- Opening and closing sections should be done the last. While many students start their writing with an introduction, it is much wiser to work on this section of the paper once the whole study is ready. The same applies to conclusion.
- Work on the title. It should be catchy, brief, informative, and inviting for the readers.
- Proofread the paper carefully. Let your head rest from the writing for several days, and then read the whole work. This way, you will notice all the aspects that need to be fixed.
Picking Your Topic: Tough Decision
To choose a topic that will work for you and show your research potential instead of burying it, you can use the following tips:
- Browse the Internet and find the projects that interest you: you can relate your project to one of their topics.
- Search for the most recent advances in the discipline that you are into, and choose an up-to-date direction for your research.
- Relate your capstone project to one of the papers you have done earlier: this way, you will have some material prepared for it before even starting to write.
- Ask your professor about which topic will suit your specialization.
- Do not choose a topic that is way above your academic level, or way below it. Pick a sphere that you are competent and compatible at.
Source: Heather Ridge
IT Capstone Project Ideas
What is a capstone project for those who study IT? It is a chance to demonstrate their programming skills and offer technological solutions applicable in everyday life. Moreover, IT is often related to other disciplines, such as nursing, architecture, design, etc. Below you can find some topics for this specialization that might interest you.
- Surveillance technologies: the recent advances
- Storing and organizing electronic data
- Online security software
- Artificial intellect for decision making
- Face recognition software at work and at home
High School Project Ideas
In case you deal with a high school capstone project, you also need to take your topic seriously. Here are some topics that you can choose from:
- Business start-up ideas: How to select the one that will work
- Blood tests as a part of national screening
- The profession of a journalist: What it takes to sell your articles
- School administration: Does it matter for the pupils’ success?
- Exams preparation: How to avoid pressure and manage the workload properly
- Online learning practice in the modern education
- How to encourage students to gain better results and work harder
- Emotional intelligence: Can it be taught?
- The choice of subjects at school: shall it be narrowed down?