THE CAPSTONE PROCESS
Students are expected to complete the capstone sequence of classes (PSUS 6213: Advanced Research Methods: Individual Mentoring and PSUS 6233: Capstone) in their last 2 semesters before graduation. These two courses are self-paced and offered every semester. The student should coordinate with their capstone mentor prior to registering, and notify the Program Director of their intent in writing. PSUS 6213 should be used to flesh out the capstone idea and create a reading list, outline, and timeframe for capstone completion. Students should work with their mentor to create a problem statement and abstract for their capstone and to design a program of reading and research. This should entail background reading to evaluate the viability of the topic, identify an appropriate methodology, and articulate the value of the project to the field.
The capstone class should be taken in the student’s last semester, either in conjunction with other courses or only this course, depending on the student’s level of comfort and time. The capstone should present the results of a well-defined and original effort that involves: the analysis of primary or secondary data sources; the analysis of primary or secondary document sources; the analysis of primary or secondary ethnographic sources (an example of a primary ethnographic source is a set of interviews with city planning directors whom you interview personally, a secondary source would be a set of interviews someone else collected but which you interpret in your own original way); or the use of other academically legitimate analytical techniques (such as history, jurisprudence, philosophy) with approval and guidance from your capstone mentor.
Below are several examples of our Capstone Showcases. Feel free to look them over! Students should also stay up to date on the next Capstone Showcase event by visiting the Events page.
Summer Capstone Showcase in the CPS Deans Office in Washington, DC
Fall Capstone Showcase in MPA B07 in Washington, DC
For Fall 2022, five SUP students presented their capstone projects:
For Summer 2022, four SUP students presented their capstone projects:
For Spring 2022, five SUP students presented their capstone projects: