Capstone Support

Capstone Infographic

General Tips

  • Make sure you understand the different types of experiences that qualify for the recognition you are pursuing. Honors in the Major programs can also have options specific to your major.
  • Get to know your local librarians! They have very valuable knowledge about performing effective research, narrowing your topic(s), and how to utilize the library resources
  • Talk to your mentor(s) to find a communication medium and frequency that works for all involved. Scheduling conflicts pop up all the time, but being able to reliably contact each other will improve your chances of success.
  • Try to speak with students and mentors who are participating in undergraduate capstone projects, like those for Honors in the Major or the Schedler Honors College, or have done so in the past. Ask about the struggles and successes they experienced or for any other advice.
  • Look at the timeline template below and work with your mentor(s) to develop a timeline that will be realistic and effective for your project.
  • Analyze any resources that you come across when speaking with mentor(s), peers, professors, or others that could provide insight into your topics.


Major requirements during the capstone semester are listed below. It is recommended that the majority of your capstone is complete before entering the capstone semester, allowing your remaining time to be used for completing your reflection/paper and practicing for your oral presentation.

Activity/Requirement Week Due During Capstone Semester
Second Reader Name, Capstone Title, and Capstone Abstract due in Portal Week 5
Zero Draft Capstone Project due to Mentor, Second Reader, and Capstone Instructor Week 8
Clean Draft of Capstone Project due to Mentor, Second Reader, and Capstone Instructor Week 12
Revisions from prior draft due to Mentor and Second Reader Week 14
  • Electronic Copy of Final Capstone Project Due in Portal (no paper copy required)
  • Final Presentation (Mentor and Second Reader must be present)
Week 16
Senior Banquet Luncheon and class photo End of Spring Semester

A sample timeline for departmental capstone projects is below. Please confirm the official dates, deadlines, and requirements with your mentor and department/program, and work with your mentor to develop a timeline that fits your project.

Graduating in Spring Semester Task to be completed Graduating in Fall Semester
September 30

At least 12-7 months before graduation

  • Discuss with your research advisor that you have the necessary academic credentials (GPA).
  • Also discuss and plan for remaining experiments and research needed to produce a complete thesis.
April 31
November 30 At least 5 months before graduation

  • Complete the majority of necessary background literature work. Most of this should now be assembled into a reasonable introduction.
  • Prepare summary tables and figures that will be included in your thesis.
June 30
January 15 At least 3.5 months before graduation

  • Present to your advisor an initial draft of your complete thesis using the prescribed format.
  • Note in your draft any remaining experiments and incomplete discussion points that will be forthcoming.
August 31
Before end of third full week of semester

Complete the Honors in the Major and Thesis Release forms. Submit these completed forms to Registrar.

Before end of third full week of semester
March 15 At least 1.5 months before graduation

  • Present to your advisor a final draft for review.
October 15
April 1 At least 1 month before graduation

  • Submit to your advisor and committee a complete copy of your thesis.
  • Post/advertise the date/time/room of your thesis defense presentation.
November 1
~April 15 2-3 weeks before graduation

  • Give a 20 min oral summary (+10 min for questions) and defense of your honors research project. This should include your committee and is open to the public.
~November 15

Additional Resources

These resources may prove helpful while working on your capstone project.

Capstone Reflection Format

When other requirements are not available, this structure can be referenced for determining the format of your capstone reflection.

Written Portion

  1. Cover Page (including Abstract)
  2. Table of Contents
  3. Introduction
  4. Literature Review
  5. Methodology (Thesis) OR Design of Project (Experiential)
  6. Results (Thesis) OR Documentation of Project (Experiential)
  7. Discussion (Thesis) OR Reflective/Artist Statement (Experiential)
  8. References
  9. Appendices/Figures

Oral Presentation

Students must present the oral portion of their capstone on Study Day of the Capstone semester. The student’s advisor must be present as well as a faculty moderator.

Final Submission

Students should obtain all required signatures from their capstone committee, and submit the final paper and the thesis release form to the registrar’s office at

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