Syllabus for Associate-Level Human Services Capstone

Description | Objectives | Materials | Structure | Assessments | Grading | Strategies


The three-credit Associate-Level Human Services Capstone is an in-depth, student-centered experience that requires the integration of theory and practical experience. In this course you apply the skills and techniques you have learned, as well as your knowledge of agencies and culturally diverse client populations, to a specific project. The project will identify an issue, problem, information gap, or creative endeavor in which you will explore, research, evaluate, and theorize in a final paper. On successful completion of the course, you will have met the learning outcomes of the Human Services degree program.

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To successfully complete this course, you will be expected to:

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You will use the following materials to complete your capstone.
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The Associate-Level Human Services Capstone consists of seven modules. Each module includes an overview, list of topics, module objectives, list of study materials, one or more assignments, and additional resources to help you with your assignments. The module structure is as follows:
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For your formal work in the course, you are required to complete eight (8) essay assignments and to prepare and submit an outline, draft, and final capstone paper (see below for details). All course assignments will be graded by the mentor with the use of an evaluation rubric designed for the particular assignment. 

Essay Assignments

The eight essay assignments in modules 1–4 each address a particular component of your final capstone paper and thus prepare you, step by step, for outlining and writing your paper. Each assignment is worth 5 percent of your course grade for a total of 40 percent.
Prepare your essay assignments using whatever word processing program you have on your computer. Include your name at the top of the paper, as well as the course name and code and the semester and year in which you are enrolled.


Before submitting your first assignment, check with your mentor to determine whether your word processing software is compatible with your mentor's software. If so, you can submit your work as you prepared it. If not, save your assignment as a rich-text format (.rtf) file, using the Save As command of your software program. Rich text retains basic formatting and can be read by any other word processing program.


When satisfied that your assignment represents your best work, submit it to your mentor by means of the appropriate assignment link provided in the Submit Assignments area of the course Web site. Use the Browse button within this link to locate and attach your assignment file.


Capstone Paper

You will complete your capstone paper in three stages, beginning with a comprehensive outline in module 5 (worth 5 percent of your course grade), continuing with a draft of your paper in module 6 (worth 20 percent), and culminating in the submission of your final paper at the end of module 7 (worth 35 percent). To submit your outline, draft, and final paper, use the appropriate assignment link provided in the Submit Assignments area of the course Web site.

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Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

Essay assignments (8 @ 5 percent each)

40 percent

Outline of capstone paper

5 percent

Draft of capstone paper

20 percent

Final capstone paper

35 percent

All assignments will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:


A = 93–100 C+ = 78–79
A– = 90–92 C = 73–77
B+ = 88–89 C– = 70–72
B = 83–87 D = 60–69
B– = 80–82 F = Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of D or higher on the weighted average of all assigned course work.

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First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:
  1. Read carefully the entire Syllabus, making sure that all aspects of the course are clear to you and that you have or are able to obtain all the materials required for the course.
  2. Take the time to read the entire Online Student Handbook in the General Information area of the course Web site. The Handbook answers many questions including how to get the most from your educational experience at Thomas Edison State College.
  3. Familiarize yourself with the learning management system's environment—how to navigate it and what the various course areas contain. If you know what to expect as you navigate the course, you can better pace yourself and complete the work on time.
  4. If you are not familiar with Web-based learning, be sure to review the processes for posting responses online and submitting assignments before class begins.



Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:
  1. To stay on track throughout the course, begin each week by consulting the course Calendar. The calendar provides an overview of the course and indicates due dates for submitting assignments.
  2. Before starting the first module, take time to look at the recommended study materials, additional resources, and assignments.
  3. Check the Announcements page and class Discussion Board regularly for new course information.


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