Syllabus for MAN-630

MANAGEMENT CAPSTONE


COURSE DESCRIPTION

Candidates for completion of the MAN or HRM degree will complete an independent project demonstrating their conceptual, analytical, research, and practical management skills achieved through the courses in either program. The project, called a Capstone because it represents a crowning achievement much as a capstone does in architecture, is a 3-credit, one-term requirement that is completed at the end of the program. It is a closely supervised experience resulting in a paper that demonstrates your ability to synthesize and utilize the skills and knowledge you have gained in previous courses in your MAN or HRM program.

COURSE OBJECTIVES

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate and apply the conceptual, analytical, research, and practical management skills achieved through the courses in the MAN or HRM program.
  2. Develop an original research product that contributes something new to relevant research and/or practical contexts.
  3. Identify problems and apply proven, appropriate research strategies and methods to address or solve those problems.
  4. Practice interacting with supervisors (workplace and First and Second Readers), colleagues, and/or others in planning and carrying out a successful research project.
  5. Integrate information from several areas (e.g., focal setting, literature, collected data, documents, previous course work) into a coherent, compelling research product.
  6. Recognize patterns through data analysis, and draw appropriate conclusions and recommendations from data.
  7. Demonstrate clear, structured, readable writing in a research product.
  8. Prepare and deliver a professional quality presentation reporting on their capstone project.


COURSE MATERIALS

You will need the following materials to do the work of the course. The required textbook is available from the College's textbook supplier, MBS Direct.

Required Textbook

  1. Leedy, P.D. and Ormrod, J.E. (2005). Practical research: Planning and design, 8th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

ISBN-13: 978-0131108950

Suggested Reference Book

  1. Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 6th ed. (2009). Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.

ISBN-13: 978-1-4338-0561-5

Suggested Online Sources

All students should use this as their guide to writing and formatting their Capstone project paper. (Most students will already have a copy of the APA manual.) Students are expected to adhere to APA style and to submit all work—both drafts and final copy—in accord with APA style. Students who are not entirely familiar with APA style should become entirely familiar with it early in the Capstone course. Though the manual referenced above is the best source, the following online sources may give quicker answers to specific questions about APA style. If you bookmark the following sites in your browser, you can easily return to them:

  1. General Writing Reference Site

The Writing Center: University of Wisconsin-Madison

  1. General Writing Reference Site

The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue

  1. Research and Documentation Site

Research and Documentation Online (Diana Hacker)


COURSE STRUCTURE

During their experience in ORR-510, students developed a research proposal. In this course, you may choose to update and then implement the research described in that proposal. On the other hand, you may choose to pursue a completely different research topic for this capstone project. In either case, the structure of the course and topics covered will be as follows:

  1. Module 1: Preparing for the Research: From Proposal to Research Design

1.01    Research proposal

1.02    Problem statement

1.03    Literature review

1.04    Research design

1.05    Methods

  1. Module 2: Conducting the Research: Data Collection and Analysis

1.01    Data collection

1.02    Data analysis

1.03    Findings

  1. Module 3: Concluding the Research: From Conclusions/Recommendations to References and Appendices

3.01    Conclusions and recommendations

3.02    Limitations

3.03    References

3.04    Appendices

  1. Module 4: Concluding the Capstone Project: From Revision to Presentation

4.01   Revision

4.02   Presentation

4.03   Interaction with supervisors

Consult the course Calendar for assignment due dates.


ASSESSMENT METHODS

For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments and complete a capstone project which encompasses a capstone final paper and a presentation. See below for more details.

Consult the course Calendar for assignment due dates.

Discussion Forums

Within each module you will participate in two online class discussion forums. All discussion forums take place asynchronously on the class Discussion Board.

Online discussions provide an opportunity for you to interact with your classmates. During this aspect of the course, you respond to prompts that assist you in developing your ideas, you share those ideas with your classmates, and you comment on their posts. Discussion board interactions promote development of a community of learners, critical thinking, and exploratory learning.

Please participate in online discussions as you would in constructive face-to-face discussions. You are expected to post well-reasoned and thoughtful reflections for each item, making reference, as appropriate, to your readings. You are also expected to reply to your classmates' posts in a respectful, professional, and courteous manner. You may, of course, post questions asking for clarification or further elucidation on a topic.

Capstone Project

There is one culminating graded activity for this course: your capstone paper/project (your grade includes your presentation of the project through the conference call in Week 12).

However, in order to get credit for your capstone project, you will need to complete all of the intermediary stages.  These include:

  1. Stage 1:  Project Focus, Problem Statement and Project Form
  2. Stage 2:  Research Proposal
  3. Stage 3:  Literature Review
  4. Stage 4:  Methods
  5. Stage 5:  Findings
  6. Stage 6:  First Draft
  7. Stage 7:  Setting up the Conference Call
  8. Stage 8:  Revising and Finalizing Paper
  9. Stage 9:  The Conference Call - Presenting and Defending your Findings

You will need to obtain comments on these stages as well as approval of them in order to move to the next stage in the capstone.

You will attach items and communicate with the First Reader and Second Reader via the Stage Discussion Forums located in the Capstone Project area of this course website.  Each of the Stage  forums is only available to you and those working to help you complete this part of your capstone project.  Please complete the following sections of your Capstone Project.  Each part needs to be completed and approved before moving to the next part.

Click the following link for the evaluation rubrics for the Capstone paper and the presentation:

  1. Capstone Paper Rubric
  2. Capstone Presentation Rubric 

GRADING AND EVALUATION

Students will be evaluated on their capstone paper by both the First Reader and the Second Reader using the "Capstone Scoring Rubric." The First Reader will tabulate the two rubric assessments and determine the grade for the paper. In addition, students will be evaluated on the end-of-course telephone conference call in which they present their paper and also respond to questions.

Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

  1. Capstone project—90 percent
  2. Capstone presentation rubric—10 percent

All activities 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

B–

=

80–82

A–

=

90–92

C+

=

78–79

B+

=

88–89

C

=

73–77

B

=

83–87

F

=

Below 73

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or higher on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., assignments, discussion postings, projects, etc.). Graduate students must maintain a B average overall to remain in good academic standing.


STRATEGIES FOR SUCCESS

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 all the materials required for the course.

  1. Take the time to read the entire Online Student Handbook. The Handbook answers many questions about how to proceed through the course, how to schedule exams, and how to get the most from your educational experience at Thomas Edison State College.

  1. Arrange to take your examination(s) by following the instructions in this Syllabus and the Online Student Handbook.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the learning management systems 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.

  1. If you are not familiar with Web-based learning be sure to review the processes for posting responses online and submitting activities 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 activities, posting discussions, and scheduling and taking examinations.

  1. Check Announcements regularly for new course information.

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY

Students at Thomas Edison State College are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State College expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the College insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty takes the following forms:

  1. Cheating
  2. Plagiarizing (including copying and pasting from the Internet without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources)
  3. Fabricating information or citations
  4. Facilitating acts of dishonesty by others
  5. Unauthorized access to examinations or the use of unauthorized materials during exam administration
  6. Submitting the work of another person or work previously used without informing the mentor
  7. Tampering with the academic work of other students

Academic dishonesty will result in disciplinary action and possible dismissal from the College. Students who submit papers that are found to be plagiarized will receive an F on the plagiarized activity, may receive a grade of F for the course, and may face dismissal from the College.

A student who is charged with academic dishonesty will be given oral or written notice of the charge. If a mentor or College official believes the infraction is serious enough to warrant referral of the case to the academic dean, or if the mentor awards a final grade of F in the course because of the infraction, the student and the mentor will be afforded formal due process.

If a student is found cheating or using unauthorized materials on an examination, he or she will automatically receive a grade of F on that examination. Students who believe they have been falsely accused of academic dishonesty should seek redress through informal discussions with the mentor, through the office of the dean, or through an executive officer of Thomas Edison State College.

Plagiarism

Using someone else's work as your own is plagiarism. Although it may seem like simple dishonesty, plagiarism is against the law. Thomas Edison State College takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing will be severely penalized. If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > "Citing Sources.")

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else's. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism and advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, click the links provided below.

  1. Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism
  2. When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Thomas Edison State College. All Rights Reserved.