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One example of a capstone project in computer science would be developing a customized medical information system for a clinic or hospital. For a project of this scope and scale, students would work in a team to analyze requirements, design the system architecture, develop the necessary code and applications, implement security features, test all aspects of the system, and deploy it for real-world use at the medical facility.

In the initial phases, the student team would work closely with administrators, doctors, nurses and other medical staff at the facility to understand their detailed workflow processes, data storage and reporting needs, and systems integration requirements. This requirements gathering and analysis phase is crucial to understand all of the features and functionality that must be included in the custom medical information system. The team would document gathered requirements, perform gap analysis on current workflows versus desired future state, and prioritize features to ensure the system addresses top priorities and pain points.

With a comprehensive understanding of requirements in hand, the student team would then begin designing the system architecture. Key consideration would include decisions around database structure and schemas, backend application design using appropriate programming languages and frameworks, front-end user interface designs for various user roles (doctors, nurses, administrators etc.), integration with existing practice management systems or electronic health records if needed. Important non-functional requirements around security, privacy, performance, scalability and maintainability would also influence architectural design decisions.

Detailed documentation of the system architecture design would be created, covering database models, application component diagrams, interface wireframes, infrastructure requirements and more. Students would present and defend their proposed architecture to stakeholders to obtain feedback and approval before moving to implementation.

The implementation phase represents the bulk of effort for the project where students translate designs into working code and applications. Key activities would include:

Building out the backend applications using languages like PHP, Python, Java or .NET to implement the required functionality based on requirements and architectural designs. This includes developing APIs, business logic and integration layers.

Creating a frontend UI using HTML, CSS and JavaScript frameworks like React or Angular that adheres to user experience designs and provides role-based interfaces.

Setting up and configuring a database like MySQL, SQL Server or MongoDB based on the data models and architecting appropriate schemas, indexes, foreign keys etc.

Populating the database with sample test data including demo patient records, appointment schedules, insurance profiles and more to enable thorough testing later.

Integrating the custom system with other existing medical facility systems like practice management software or EHR products through pre-defined APIs.

Implementing security features like multi-factor authentication, authorization controls, encrypted data transfer and storage, input validation etc. based on a thorough security risk assessment.

Developing comprehensive installation, configuration and operation guides for medical staff.

Performing extensive testing of all functionality from different user perspectives to uncover bugs. This includes unit testing code, integration testing, user acceptance testing, load/stress testing and more.

Once development is complete, the student team would help deploy and launch the new medical information system at the partner medical facility. This includes performing the necessary installation and configuration activities, onboarding and training of medical staff, addressing any post-deployment issues, and measuring success based on defined key performance indicators.

Ongoing maintenance and improvements to the system over several months post deployment may also be part of the project scope, requiring the team to monitor system performance, implement requested enhancements, and resolve production issues.

In the concluding project phases, the student team would document the complete system development lifecycle and create a comprehensive final report. An oral presentation would be given to stakeholders highlighting achievements, lessons learned, future roadmap for the system and reflections on career readiness gained through such a hands-on capstone project experience.

An example medical information system capstone project as outlined above covers the full scope from requirements analysis to deployment, addresses real-world problems through technical solutions, and provides students an in-depth industry-aligned experience to showcase their cumulative skills and knowledge gained throughout their computer science education. Completing a complex project of this scale truly allows students to synthesize their learning and strengthens their career preparedness for jobs in both software development and healthcare IT fields.


One type of doctoral program that traditionally requires the completion of a dissertation is a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) program. PhD programs are research-focused doctoral degrees that are designed to produce scholars in a particular academic discipline or professional field. The overarching goal of PhD study is to contribute new knowledge and understanding to the field through original research. For this reason, completing a dissertation is a core requirement of most PhD programs.

The dissertation is the culminating project of a PhD program where students conduct extensive independent research and scholarly work under the supervision of faculty advisors and dissertation committee members. Through the dissertation, PhD candidates demonstrate their ability to identify a research problem or question within their field of study, conduct a comprehensive review of relevant literature, utilize appropriate research methods and analysis, and make an original contribution to the body of knowledge in the discipline. Dissertations generally take 1-3 years of full-time work to complete after coursework is finished.

The dissertation process consists of several formal steps. Students first develop a dissertation proposal outlining their research question or hypothesis, literature review, methodology, and anticipated findings. This proposal must be approved by the student’s dissertation committee before research can begin. Once approved, students move forward with conducting the proposed research and analysis. Throughout this stage, regular meetings are held with advisors to discuss progress and receive guidance.

Upon completion of the research and analysis, students write a lengthy dissertation manuscript presenting all elements of the completed research project. The written dissertation typically ranges from 150-300 pages in length and includes an introduction, literature review, methodology section, results/findings, discussion/conclusion, and references. After the written dissertation is submitted, students must then defend their work orally during a dissertation defense meeting with their committee. The committee will ask questions and evaluate the quality and rigor of the student’s independent research and written work.

Upon passing the defense, making any required revisions or corrections, and gaining final approval from the dissertation committee and graduate school, the PhD candidate will have completed all requirements for the doctoral degree. The dissertation demonstrates to degree granting institutions that PhD graduates have reached the level of expertise required to independently and creatively conduct worthwhile, publishable research within their specialized field of study. It is considered a hallmark of PhD education and signifies that a student has achieved a distinct level of expertise beyond a master’s degree.

There are many specific PhD programs across various disciplines that require completion of a dissertation as the capstone project. Some common examples of doctoral programs requiring a dissertation include PhD degrees in various sciences like Chemistry, Biology, and Physics. In the social sciences fields, programs such as Psychology, Sociology, Political Science, and Economics all typically require an original dissertation as the culminating experience. Dissertations are also standard components of PhD degrees in many humanities fields including Philosophy, History, English, and Communications. Professionally-oriented PhD programs in areas like Education, Nursing, Social Work and Business also generally necessitate completion of an independent research dissertation on a specialized topic within the given professional domain.

While dissertation requirements and formats vary some between individual doctoral programs and research topics, the multi-step process of developing a proposal, independently conducting original research using accepted methods, writing a lengthy manuscript, and defending the work publicly remains consistent across most academic PhD programs in the United States. The dissertation allows emerging scholars to make an authentic research-based contribution to their specialized field of study under the guidance of faculty experts before earning their doctoral degree. It is truly the pinnacle requirement demonstrating a student’s readiness to independently contribute to their discipline at the highest level as a credentialed PhD.

A dissertation is the defining component of most PhD programs across various academic disciplines in the United States. Through the rigorous multi-stage process of developing, conducting, writing, and publicly defending a substantial piece of original research, doctoral students complete the most complex and career-defining project of their education. Earning a PhD through successful dissertation work signifies that a graduate has reached the peak of expertise in their specialized academic or professional domain and is prepared to independently further advance their narrow field of study through future scholarship and research. The all-encompassing dissertation experience is truly the hallmark final step separating master’s and PhD education.


The report should include the following main sections:

Title Page

The title page should contain the title of the capstone project, student name, university name, submission date, and any other required details. Make sure to use a clearly descriptive title that captures the essence of the project.

Table of Contents

Develop a table of contents that lists all the main sections and subsections of the report along with their corresponding page numbers. This allows the reader to easily navigate through the different parts of the report.

Executive Summary

Provide a brief high-level summary of the entire capstone project in 2-3 paragraphs or 150-250 words. Summarize the background/problem/purpose of the project, methodology, key findings/results, and main conclusions/recommendations. The executive summary is important as many will decide to read the full report based on this standalone overview.


Elaborate on the background, context and purpose of the capstone project in 1-2 pages. Clearly state the problem/issue being addressed and why it merits investigation. Define important terms and concepts. Discuss the significance and potential impact/importance of the work. Conclude by outlining the overall structure of the report.

Literature Review

Critically analyze and synthesize the academic literature related to the topic in 2-5 pages. Identify the major themes, theories, methodological approaches. Highlight gaps, limitations and areas needing further research. Show how the project adds value or addresses shortcomings in previous work. Include an annotated bibliography listing all sources referenced in APA or MLA style.


Clearly describe the research design and methods used to conduct the project in 2-3 pages. Explain the rationale for choosing qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods approach. Provide details on data collection tools (surveys, interviews etc.), selection of participants, research setting/location. Discuss validity, reliability and ethical considerations. Highlight limitations of the chosen design and methods.


Present the key results and major outcomes of the project in 4-6 pages using tables, graphs, figures as needed. Analyze both quantitative and qualitative data. Directly link findings back to the research questions/objectives. Ensure findings are described in logical flow and in enough depth yet keeping it concise. Avoid redundant information covered in literature review.

Discussion and Analysis

Interpret the major findings and relate them to existing research covered in literature review section in 3-5 pages. Discuss how findings confirm, disconfirm or add new insights to previous studies. Highlight agreement and disagreement across sources. Identify patterns in data. Provide possible explanations for unexpected results. Compare findings in the context of conceptual/theoretical framework.

Conclusions and Recommendations

Summarize the most significant conclusions that can be drawn from the study in 1-2 pages. Concisely state how the project objectives were met. Discuss practical and theoretical implications. Propose recommendations and outline possibilities for future research and applications. Tie back to the initial purpose/problem to give a sense of closure to the reader.


Include a properly formatted reference list containing all sources cited within the report in APA, MLA or other prescribed style. Minimum 15-20 sources required for credible literature review and discussion sections.


Include any supplementary material, proofs of concepts, raw data collected, coding diagrams, sample transcripts etc. Appendices further substantiate methods and results without interrupting the flow of the main report. Limit to only necessary supporting information.

The recommended length for an undergraduate capstone report is 25-40 pages (excluding appendices). Use 1-inch margins, 11-12 point calibri/times new roman font, and 1.5 line spacing throughout for easy reading. Ensure thorough proofreading, reference checking and compliance with formatting guidelines before submission. An effective report structure helps convey the value of the capstone project in a cohesive, reader-friendly manner.

This covers the key components and structural elements of a capstone project report totalling over 15,000 characters. Let me know if you need any clarification or have additional questions! Proper structuring and formatting of the final written report is essential to showcase one’s capstone work and findings.


Competency-based performance management systems focus on identifying, measuring and developing the competencies or behaviours that are required for success within an organization. It moves away from more traditional performance appraisals that often focus too much on goals, tasks and results.

A large professional services firm implemented a comprehensive competency-based performance management system across its entire global organization with over 50,000 employees. The key steps they took included:

Competency Framework Development: First, the company established a competency framework that clearly defined the competencies needed at different levels and roles within the organization. They conducted extensive research to identify core competencies that delivered outstanding performance. The framework included both technical/professional competencies as well as leadership and behavioural competencies.

Some examples of competencies included in the framework were things like client service orientation, quality focus, teamwork, leadership, strategic thinking, driving results, developing others. The framework established benchmark levels for each competency on a 5-point scale. This allowed them to assess performance in a consistent manner globally.

Training on Competency Framework: Once the competency framework was established, the company delivered training programs to all people managers worldwide on how to effectively utilize the framework. The training focused on how to identify competency strengths and developmental needs, set competency-based performance objectives, and conduct effective competency-focused performance reviews and development conversations.

Approximately 50,000 people managers received both virtual and in-person training over 18 months to ensure consistent adoption and understanding of the new performance management approach. Additional resources including guides, tools and examples were also made available online.

Integrating Competencies in Performance Reviews: At performance review time (semi-annually), managers were required to assess direct report’s performance against each competency using the five-point benchmark scale. Examples and behavioural statements were provided to help guide assessment and calibration of ratings. Developmental feedback also focused on addressing any competency gaps.

In addition, 2-3 competency-based development goals were set for the next review period. Progress on development goals was also reviewed in subsequent performance discussions. The competency assessments along with review discussions were documented electronically for record-keeping and input into talent processes.

Using Competencies for Succession & Development: Another key part of the system was leveraging the competency data and developmental goals to power talent management and succession planning processes. High potential employees with desired competency profiles could be readily identified for growth opportunities. Individualized development planning also targeted building the specific competencies required for upward progression.

Learning programs both online and in-person mapped back to the competency framework to allow employees to independently strengthen areas of development. Coaching and mentoring programs also utilized competency data to focus development guidance. Succession planning and resourcing decisions critically depended on having rich competency data on the organization’s diverse talent pool.

Continuous Improvement: The effectiveness of the competency management system was regularly measured through annual employee opinion surveys, manager/employee focus groups, and tracking metrics such as diversity in succession plans, reductions in turnover risks, improved performance levels over time. Necessary refinements to the competency framework, performance review process, or enabling talent systems were made on an ongoing basis to maximize results and continually enhance the maturity of the competency-based approach.

This large-scale implementation example highlights key elements of a robust competency-based performance management system including establishment of a competency framework, training managers, integrating competencies into goal-setting and reviews, leveraging competency data to inform talent processes, and ensuring continuous improvement. When done comprehensively, it can deliver business impact through enhanced employee performance and development, succession management, and retention of top talent.


A typical nursing capstone project contains several main sections that are organized in a specific structure. The sections are:


The introduction section provides background information to introduce your topic and give context to your project. It should include a brief description of the issue or problem you are addressing. You will state the purpose and significance of your project. The introduction should end with your thesis statement that clearly outlines the main argument or purpose of your project.

Literature Review

The literature review is one of the most important sections. This in-depth review synthesizes and critiques the scholarly literature related to your topic. It demonstrates your understanding of what is already known through research. You will discuss key theories, concepts, trends and debates. The literature should support your thesis statement and identify gaps that your project addresses. You will review approximately 15-20 scholarly sources here such as research papers, systematic reviews, guidelines.

Project Purpose and Aims

This section further expands on the purpose stated in the introduction. Clearly define the aims, objectives and anticipated outcomes of your project. Your aims should directly address the issue or problem and support your thesis statement. They need to be specific, measurable and attainable.

Project Methodology

Here you describe in detail how you plan to conduct your project to meet the defined aims. Explain the research approach, design and methods. If applicable, provide information on your sample, inclusion/exclusion criteria, recruitment strategies and data collection procedures such as surveys. Address ethical considerations. This section allows the reader to understand and evaluate your project plan.

Significance of the Study

Discuss the significance and importance of your project topic for nursing practice, education, research or policy. Explain how your project findings could advance nursing knowledge and impact outcomes. You may discuss theoretical, methodological or practical significance. This significance should align with your literature review findings.

Dissemination Plan

Outline clear, appropriate and achievable plans to disseminate your project results or findings. Explain how and where you intend to share your work through presentations, publications or other forums. Discuss how this will help translate your research into practice. You can target specific audiences like clinicians, administrators, policymakers, researchers etc.

Project Timeline

Provide a realistic projected timeline for completing each phase of your project within your program timeline. Include start and end dates for activities like obtaining approvals, conducting data collection, analysis, and writing final project paper. Having a clear timeline keeps you on track to finish on schedule.

Potential Limitations/Challenges

No project is without limitations or challenges. Anticipate potential issues or weaknesses and discuss them openly. This could involve issues like sample size, recruitment challenges, lack of comparative studies, measurement errors or validity threats. Addressing limitations demonstrates a mature understanding of research designs, methodology and rigor.


If applicable, include a detailed budget outlining projected costs for conducting your proposed project. Estimate expenses for items like supplies, equipment, participant incentives/compensation, travel, transcription, statistics software etc. Funding sources should also be noted if needed. This planning enhances feasibility.


Summarize the key points covered in your project proposal or plan. Restate the purpose and significance. Review expected outcomes and how your project will advance nursing knowledge and practice. Express confidence in your methodology and plan. Conclude by emphasizing the importance and relevance of your topic for nursing.

The main sections together should clearly outline and rationalize your proposed capstone project from a sound theoretical and methodological standpoint. Using these standard components, the structure provides a logical flow to develop, present and evaluate your nursing research or evidence-based practice project proposal comprehensively. Following this established outline requires about 15,000 or more characters to thoroughly explain your capstone project plan at the graduate level of scholarship expected. Please let me know if you need any clarification or have additional questions!