As seniors, CWRU students participate in a Capstone project over one or two semesters, culminating in a final public presentation of their work in a university-wide celebration of scholarship and service.
Each Senior Capstone must include key elements:
1. Demonstration of critical thinking and writing skills
2. Regular oversight by the Capstone advisor.
3. Periodic reporting of progress.
4. 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 department of capstone origin.
5. Oral reports including a final public presentation at the Senior Capstone Fair, a conference, a performance, a public lecture, a teaching presentation, or another setting, as approved by the department of capstone origin.
Some departments integrate Capstone courses into their existing requirements. Others will be developed by individual students or by small groups, in consultation with faculty members. Capstones demonstrate the knowledge, initiative, problem-solving skills, and powers of communication that students have acquired as CWRU undergraduates, especially through their participation in seminars. A significant number of students – including all nursing majors and many engineering majors – will engage in some form of service as part of their Capstones. The UCAP395 Website provides further details about the possibilities of independent study.
The Learning Outcomes for Capstone projects are that students should be able to: (1) demonstrate that a student is able to pose a thoughtful question or problem relevant to her field of study and propose and defend an insightful and original answer or solution, one that indicates the student’s potential as an independent learner. (2) apply critical thinking and ethical deliberation in proposing and defending an insightful and original answer or solution relevant to his field of study, one that indicates the student’s potential as an ethical learner and contributor. (3) do research in support of an insightful and original answer or solution relevant to her field of study, indicating the student’s potential as an independent learner and productive contributor. (4) propose and defend an insightful and original answer or solution relevant to her field of study in clear and coherent academic prose, consistent with the conventions of that field and/or the needs of her reading audience. (5) effectively communicate information and ideas to a public audience about one’s scholarship through discipline-appropriate oral presentation that uses a mixture of modes