Writing the capstone paper is an important task in which you need to devote your effort and time properly to come up with the best results. To learn how to write the perfect Capella University capstone project, check out what its components are, the steps and some mistakes to avoid when working on it.
What Are the Components of a Capstone Project?
- Title page
- Copyright page
- Research methods
- Research results
Apart from these, remember that your paper should contain 45 pages, or 12000 words. It should also refer to references between 12 and 14 sources.
Check out a list of capstone project requirements that everyone should know!
Common Capstone Mistakes to Avoid
- Rushing your paper due to lack of time
- Squeezing researching with writing
- Repetitive work—like cutting and pasting previous projects
- Lack of attention or focus: It happens when you try to include as many materials in the paper, resulting to a weak paper that failed at emphasizing the main elements that you have learned in the course.
- Not giving attention to the importance of the paper: To avoid it, just remember that your paper will bear your name and it will be kept by your college/university. Do your best!
- Lack of system in gathering data: Do not use the scattergun approach in research, or your results will be disorganized and chaotic, too.
- Lack of important analysis: Apply critical thinking in what you read. Interpret and analyze it in the best manner that you could.
Steps in Writing
- List down all the papers you wrote.
- Select a topic and include as much as what you have worked on as much as possible.
- Get your topic approved by your professor.
- Collect updated references for the study.
- Take down notes and begin drafting the project.
- Write your conclusion and introduction last.
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Important Capstone Project Requirements
Capstone research guidelines vary from school to school and in some cases from instructor to instructor within the same school. Regardless of the guidelines used, they must be followed. A capstone requirement that is common to most capstone papers is the structure of the paper. The basic capstone requirement for structure of the finished paper is shown here:
- Title page
- Abstract/Executive summary
- Table of contents
- Introduction – Background, issue involved, why its important and reasons for choosing the project as a solution.
- Literature review – Review of literature in the field that is relevant to the project.
- Methodology – This is essentially step by step instructions on how you conducted your project. Includes methods and tools used
- Results – Reports the results of the project
- Conclusion– Includes a summary of findings and a discussion of the conclusions drawn from the project. An analysis of the data should also be included.
The structure can change depending on the format required.
Capstone Project Requirements for Format
As with the structure above, capstone requirements may vary depending on the format required. Two of the more common formats are APA and MLA. There are others, or a school may make their own. The following are capstone project requirements affected by the format selected:
- Citing references
- Margins – One inch on top, bottom, left and right.
- Font Size and type – 12-point, Times New Roman
- Line spacing – Double-space throughout the paper, including the title page, abstract, body of the document, references, appendices, tables, and figures
- Alignment – Flush left
- Paragraph indentation – 5-7 spaces
- Page numbers – The page number appears on the right edge of the paper in the top header of every page.
- Running head – The running head is a short title for the paper. It is limited to 50 characters including spaces and punctuation. The running head is part of the header. Type the running head in the header flush left. The page number should be on the same line of the header but is entered flush right. On the cover page preface the running head with the words “Running head:”
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