Students are expected to maintain routine contact with the instructor throughout the course. While the number of contacts may vary according to the specific course and individual student need, the University requires periodic weekly contacts during the semester. Contact will consist of professor notes, forum interaction, and email feedback. The method of discussion will be on-line related to issues concerning forum assignments, assignments, and the creative project.
There is no textbook for this course, although you are encouraged to review books from previous courses in your program, such as your Research Methods course. Also, review the assigned support materials for this course!
This course has a strong writing component. The goal is to organize, synthesize, and demonstrate your comprehension of core concepts investigated during this course by applying a combination of the terms, concepts, and details you have learned in a systematic way. As important as "the details" that you analyze and arrange in your writing, are the conclusions you draw from those details, and your predictions, responses to, and ultimate interpretation of those details.
NOTE: We will use the sixth edition of the American Psychological Association’s Publication Manual for ALL of the class writing and formatting styles. If you do not already have the book, it is wise to get a copy ASAP.
All written submissions should be submitted in Times New Roman/12 size font and page set-up that is readable and neat. It is recommended that students try to adhere to a consistent format, which is described below.
- Typewritten in double-spaced format with a readable style and font and submitted inside the electronic classroom (unless classroom access is not possible and other arrangements have been approved by the professor).
- 12-point font and Times New Roman styles.
- Page margins Top, Bottom, Left Side and Right Side = 1 inch, with reasonable accommodation being made for special situations and online submission variances.
Please note that Wikipedia is NOT an acceptable source for use in your academic writing at APUS, due to the fact that it is open for editing by anyone and is not guaranteed to be reviewed for accuracy. Use your judgment when choosing sources and try to stick with articles and websites from reputable organizations that are likely to be accurate and authoritative, rather than blogs and wikis that are subjective in nature.
All weekly written assignments will be assessed according to the provided rubric. Note that a score of 0 may be assigned in any category where your work does not meet the criteria for the beginning level.
The Forum assignments for this course are designed to promote interactivity among students and enhance the online learning process. The Forum provides maximum flexibility because you do not have to be online at the same time as another person and you can read what other students have written.
Forum Timing: For the forum, you must post your work by midnight on Wednesday, continue to follow your classmates' posts for the remainder of the week, and post the follow-up peer responses prior to midnight on Sunday, except for week one. Your follow-up posts can add additional insight to a classmate's opinions or can challenge their opinions. Use examples from the readings, or from your own research, to support your views, as appropriate. Be sure to read the follow-up posts to your own posts and reply to any questions or requests for clarification. You are encouraged to conduct research and use other sources to support your answers.
Required Participation: Please keep in mind that the forum assignments require you to make at least 1 post to the forum with at least 500 words about the topic and also respond to at least 2 peers’ posts with at least 200 words. Please be advised that there will be point deductions if you do not comply with these requirements of the assignment. Each one of you will have a different and unique experience that we can all learn from. Your participation in the Forums unleashes the power of synergy in our classroom. To facilitate this interaction, please be prompt when posting your forum work for each week; this provides time for the others to actively engage in the dialogue. For practical reasons, when you respond to other learners’ posts, please start your response by referencing their name. I will read and grade your participation by reading the forum. There is no need to also post your forum work in the assignments area of the classroom. Refer to the forum and the syllabus for more details on grading.
This course requires disciplined independent practice and individual completion of assignments. Although Distance Learning provides you with a flexible schedule to meet your professional, personal, and academic responsibilities, you are expected to follow the student course guide and submit assignments on time and on schedule. Unless otherwise arranged, all accepted late weekly assignments will lose 5% per day late – and late creative project will lose at least one full letter grade. No credit will be given for any work submitted more than 7 days late. All work must be submitted by the end of the class session. As adults, students, and working professionals you have competing demands for your time. Should you need additional time to complete an assignment, please contact me before the due date, so we can discuss the situation and determine an acceptable resolution. Routine submission of late assignments is unacceptable and may result in points deducted from your final course grade. Again, assignments submitted late without a prearranged extension will be subject to penalty of 5% per day late, and no credit will be given for any work submitted more than 7 days past the assignment’s due date. No late assignments will be accepted after the last day of the course.
TOPIC/TABLE OF CONTENTS (APPENDIX 9: SAMPLE OF A TABLE OF CONTENTS)
Topic and Table of Contents are due at the end of Week 2. Please review Appendix 9 - Sample Page of a Table of Contents.
- For week two, submit the Topic and the Table of Contents.
- Submit a similar document as illustrated in Appendix 9 in the Capstone Manual.
FORMAL PROPOSAL (MASTER'S CAPSTONE: CREATIVE PROJECT)
A formal proposal is due at the end of Week 3. By this time, you would have selected a topic and provided a proposal outline for your creative project of which must align with your core subject area (remember you may only complete a creative project in this course regardless of what other options are listed in the Capstone Manual). Please use the Capstone Manual and guidance provided in the classroom for assistance.
The formal proposal must provide a clear and lucid description of your questions, project or problem and a proposed method of answering the questions, addressing the project or solving the problem. Proposal drafting is considered a learning process and helps you avoid oversights and possible mistakes; so you may send me a draft before going final. Guidance on the format of the proposal and a sample proposal are contained in the Capstone Manual provided. The proposal should explain the question, project, or problem to be investigated and convince the professor that the question, project or problem merits investigation. It should show that you have read the relevant and recent literature on the subject and it should contain a list of materials consulted during the preliminary stages of your project.
In general, the creative project proposal should include background information related to the project, purpose of the project, and investigatory procedures to be used. The formal proposal should not exceed five (5) pages (proposal title page not included). When the proposed project involves the study of human subjects and/or animals, such as a survey or interview, an Institutional Review Board review and approval of the proposed research is required. Please visit http://www.apus.edu/community-scholars/institutional-review-board/research.htm for more guidance—this process takes about a month to complete. Once your proposal is approved, you will work closely with your professor as you develop and address your topic.
Creative Project Introduction (See Creative Project of the Capstone Manual)
An Introduction is due at the end of Week 5.
The creative project is expected to contain the following elements in the introduction:
- Provide a clear and lucid description of the creative project including the goal and intent of the project.
- Provide a weekly schedule and objectives for the work to be completed in 16 weeks
- Provide a sponsor who will sign and validate the work
Similarly, the introduction identifies your specific creative project and sets the general context for it.
Creative Project Design (See the Capstone Manual)
Project Design is due at the end of Week 7:
This section describes the design of the applied/creative project and situates the project within an issue, question, or problem within the discipline.
• Discuss how the project questions, contradicts, or reinforces existing theoretical knowledge relative to the student’s professional practice and/or discipline.
• Introduces a critical lens or theoretical framework that informs the project, including appropriate citations and context for this framework.
• Describes the expected contribution of the project to knowledge or professional practice within the discipline.
• Discuss the limitations of the project’s scope and generalizability.
Creative Project Literature Review (See Capstone Manual)
A 25 page literature review is due at the end of Week 8. The focus is on how the creative project experience fits into the discipline. Specifically, it introduces the project and places it in a larger context that includes a discussion of how this experience helps the student meet the program objectives. It provides the current state of accumulated knowledge as it relates to the project.
- Describe how completing this project is consistent with the course of study.
- Articulate the objectives you hope to achieve through the completion of this project.
- Provide a short conclusion and transition to the next section.
To help you meet your final paper requirement. Please review the rubric and Capstone Manual for more specific guidelines on expectations; however, please note you are to provide comprehensive analysis of details, facts, and concepts in a logical sequence. You should demonstrate a higher- level of critical thinking necessary for 800-1000 level work. You are to provide well-supported ideas and reflection with a variety of current and/or world views in the assignment. You are expected to present a genuine intellectual development of ideas throughout assignment. You should thoroughly understand and excel in explaining all major points. An original, unique, and/or imaginative approach to overall ideas, concepts, and findings is required. Overall format of assignment needs to include an appropriate introduction (or abstract), well- developed paragraphs, and conclusion. Finished assignment demonstrates your ability to plan and organize research in a logical sequence. You are expected to use at least of 25 or more references in your literature review.
DRAFT CREATIVE PROJECT
Draft Research Paper or Project is at the end of Week 13. Please use the guidance in the Capstone Manual. The coordinating process requires consistent communication with you to ensure adequate feedback on draft paper on project. You are encouraged ask other faculty, professionals and leaders in your field of study to read and provide feedback on draft sections of your major research paper or project where these faculty members and professionals may have special expertise.
FINAL CREATIVE PROJECT
Your final project is due at the end of Week 15. This will include the requirements of the Capstone Manual. Again, please use the guidance in the Capstone Manual in the classroom for this assignment. You need to provide a minimum of 25 references to support your final creative project.
FINAL PROJECT BLOG/WEBINAR (Check with your professor about the specifics for webinar presentation)
Now that you have completed your creative project, you are required to write a 500 words blog by the end of Week 16 of your paper and submit for grading. Depending on the quality of your blog, we publish it to the http://www.apus.edu/ctl/students/gradstudies/resources.htm website and other publically associated websites. You will get an opportunity to note the publication on your resume and contribute to the intellectual development of the discipline. Below is the requirement for the blog:
Guidelines for blogging:
- Aim for a max of 500 words. It’s OK to go over this amount, but keep it concise and to the point.
- Include a 50 word bio for each post that includes the author’s education and professional background as it relates to the content.
- Write in short, declarative paragraphs. Do not use APA style and avoid being overly formal in the narrative.
- Keep the tone of the piece conversational and write to the general public, or a prospective student who may be new to higher education. Personalize the discussion. If you’re an expert in this area, write in first person narrative and be specific in your examples.
- Language should be compelling, with a tone of authority and academia. Cite any reference works, and make sure the content is universally understandable. If you’re using statistics, format them into bulleted lists in order to break up the content.
- Focus on timely subjects. It’s more compelling to readers if you discuss topical issues related to your program such as technical innovations, controversial issues, or new career paths. This helps to convey our focus on providing relevant, forward thinking education.
- Be comprehensive. If you’re introducing an idea, or initiative write from beginning to end. Narrate the post with a purpose, and leave the reader with something to think
Submission Instructions for Webinar
• Use the provided slides as guidance
• You may use images from sites such as http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/
• Do not crowd your slides
• You will present the 30 minutes Webinar Saturday of WK16, starting at 4PM ET (coordinate with your professor)
• Exercise professionalism
• Submit the slides for grading and present in a webinar format for 50% of your grade!
All work submitted must be original work. Incidents of academic dishonesty will result in you failing the assignment, and repeat incidents will result in failing the course. I check assignment regularly for incidents of academic dishonesty. Please read and understand the University policy on academic dishonesty. You must credit your sources and provide the appropriate references on your assignments.
Course Requirements: Your final grade will be based on the following course requirements and percentages:
|Week 1 Forum
|Week 2 Forum
|Week 4 Forum
|Week 5 Forum
|Week 9 Forum
|Week 16 Forum
|Assignment 1: WK2 Topic/Table of Contents
|Assignment 2: WK3 Formal Proposal
|Assignment 3: WK5 Creative Project Introduction
|Assignment 4: WK7 Creative Project Design
|Assignment 5: WK8 Literature Review
|Assignment 6: WK 13 Draft Creative Project
|Assignment 7: WK15 Final Creative Project
|Assignment 8: WK16 Final Paper Blog/Webinar