Well-Thought-Out Guidelines on Writing a Capstone Project
Typically the capstone project involves the technical analysis of a suggested engineering/financial/legal, etc. solution covering the particular problematic issue studies during the whole semester or even a year. It also often includes an economic part that shows the effect of introducing innovations, proposed by the student. Here you can find timely and useful tips on how to write your capstone project on time without compromising on its quality. Enjoy!
Decide on the Topic
The topic of the capstone project is established either by your professor or by yourself. If you choose a topic yourself, you need to take one in which you are genuinely interested. Try to choose the topic with a clear formulation, otherwise, it will be much more difficult to deal with a capstone project, especially if you do this for the first time.
Note! Don’t agree with the subject randomly chosen by your professor if you don’t find it particularly inspiring. Try to negotiate and decide on topic you would like to elaborate on.
Dive Into the Topic for Several Days
Do not ignore this stage, otherwise, it will not be easy for you to make a clear plan. But it’s not worthwhile to dig into the materials over your head and ears — perhaps the professor will make corrections to your plan, and it will require focusing on some issues and omit others.
Note! Don’t try to write too many notes while reading, you have to receive a broad understanding now, don’t get distracted with some technical issues.
Make a Plan
When you get a general idea of your capstone project topic, start drawing up a plan. More precisely, the there should be two plans: a brief and a full, broad one. First, make a short plan for writing a project and discuss it with the assigned professor. Then write the detailed plan to each paragraph: elaborate on what you are going to write about, what issue will you disclose. Confirm it with your professor again and make adjustments if required.
Note! It is better to rewrite the plan five times than rewrite all the course work once!
Gather Relevant Materials
This can be both printed scientific publications and electronic resources. The quality of your capstone project significantly depends on the quality of the gathered materials, so you should pay the utmost attention to this stage. It is better if your professor confirms the validity of the major sources you are going to use.
Note! In the digital era it is easy to get lost in the variety of sources so you need your own strategy on gathering the materials.
First of all, revise the plan and divide it into blocks according to the information you need to find to cover them. Then analyze the list of sources and literature. Divide it into parts:
- “flagships”, from which you will get the most of the information and the most valuable information;
- auxiliary materials, from which you will take a couple of quotes and estimation.
It is better to have not less than 4-5 “flagships”.
Write the Introduction After You Are Done with Conclusions
Of course, most of the manuals will tell you to do reverse, but this way is far more efficient and less time consuming. Capstone project is a huge assignment and you never know how it will go and which conclusions you will make. According to the basic rules the conclusions should comply with the introduction. To make sure they do, write introduction after you are done with conclusions and you will never get into awkward situation.
Note! If you have to provide your professor with an introduction, try to write it rather vaguely, so later you can adjust it without violating any of your “promises”.
We don’t elaborate on writing a body part and proofreading, because the rules for that are standard and you can find them in your textbook or any other academic manual related to your discipline.
What is truly important when writing a capstone project is to be not only a good analyst but also an innovator, because the professors highly value only such projects. Writing a capstone project will prepare you for writing a thesis or dissertation, so pay attention to all the stages, it will save you a significant amount of time and efforts. Good luck!