UCAP 395 affords students the opportunity to pursue a Capstone experience outside the SAGES Capstone courses offered by academic departments. Students must identify a project, a mentor, and an oversight committee. If the mentor is not a Case Western Reserve University faculty member, then the student must also identify a faculty advisor who does hold such an appointment, and who will serve as the instructor of record. A Capstone experience can take various forms, but must include certain elements: critical thinking, regular oversight by the project advisor(s), periodic written and oral reporting of progress, a final written report which describes the project activity (which may be a performance, experiment, student teaching, live case analysis, creative writing endeavor, etc.), and a final public presentation. More details about course policies, including procedures for registering, are available via the SAGES office and website. UCAP 395 may be taken as a one-semester or a two-semester course for 1-6 credits in any given semester and 3-6 credits total. A permit from the Director of SAGES is required.
Capstone Experience Content
The crucial elements of any SAGES Capstone experience, which must be incorporated into any UCAP 395 project, are:
• Critical thinking on the part of the student.
• Clear goals with an appropriate plan of action.
• Regular oversight by the project adviser.
• Periodic reporting of progress.
• Regular writing (e.g. drafts, progress reports, critiques) throughout the project including a final written report which may be a thesis or equivalent document associated with the project or activity, (e.g., such pursuits as performance, experiment, live case analysis, or creative writing), as approved by the advisory committee.
• A public presentation at the Undergraduate Symposium and Poster Session, a conference, a performance, a public lecture, a teaching presentation, or other, as approved by the advisory committee.
The contract, which every student must file for UCAP 395, attempts to insure that these elements are taken into consideration at the beginning of each project. For clarification of any policies associated with UCAP 395, see the list of Frequently Asked Questions or contact Prof. Peter Whiting, the Director of SAGES.
In addition to the student, the parties to the contract, each of whom must approve the contract terms, are:
Mentor – The mentor is the person who has primary (day-to-day) responsibility for supervising the student and guiding him or her through the project. If the mentor is not a CWRU faculty member, he or she must be approved to act as a mentor by the CWRU faculty member who serves as the project advisor and by the Director of SAGES (or his designee).
Project Advisor – The advisor must be a CWRU faculty member. The advisor will assign the final course grade in consultation with the mentor and other advisory committee members. (If the mentor meets this condition, he or she may also serve as the project advisor.)
Advisory Committee – Students must identify a three (or more) person advisory committee. The responsibilities of this committee are to hear and read at least one progress report during each semester of the project and to help evaluate the final oral and written reports. The student should choose the committee members in consultation with his or her mentor and advisor, who must approve the choice and who themselves are (1 or 2 of the 3) members of this committee.
It is suggested, but not required, that at least one member of the Advisory Committee be a member of a department in which the student is pursuing a major.
SAGES Capstone Coordinator – Each School/College has jurisdiction over the SAGES Capstone Program for its departments and each School/College has identified a SAGES Capstone Coordinator to oversee its program. These individuals are identified, here, on the SAGES Capstone Contacts link.
Director of SAGES or His Designee – The Director of SAGES will issue the permit that allows a student to register for UCAP 395 but the final grade will be assigned by the Capstone Project Advisor.