The Capstone Paper

The Capstone paper required for CALIS is expected to contribute to the field by presenting new knowledge or new synthesis of published information. It should be of publishable quality, meeting acceptance criteria for scholarly journals. While students are encouraged to publish, this is not required.

The capstone paper is expected to involve a level of effort greater than that normally expended on a term paper, but less than that expended on a master’s thesis. It should demonstrate competence in the use of appropriate research methodology.

Submit the paper’s topic and approach according to the above guidelines for approval by the CALIS Committee before beginning the work on it. Students should arrange with a faculty member to serve as advisor for the research paper, and confer with the advisor as needed during the research and writing stages.

The paper will be evaluated on the basis of originality, organization, appropriateness of research design or methodology, clarity of presentation, and other factors traditionally applied in judging scholarly work. Students will present their research results at a LIS Research Colloquium or other appropriate forum.

As a guide to style of presentation, the student should use one of the accepted manuals of style, such as the University of Chicago Manual of Style, Modern Language Association Style Manual or the American Psychological Association Publication Manual.

A near-final draft should be submitted to the Committee for review. In accepting the research paper, the Committee may make recommendations for changes to be incorporated in the final accepted draft. A copy of the final accepted paper must be submitted to LIS. Students are encouraged to post the paper on their Web site as part of an e-­‐‑portfolio.

Generally, it will be expected that the format of the paper will meet Office of Graduate Education guidelines with regard to such things as margins and print quality (laser printed, one inch margins all around, use endnotes or parenthetical references instead of footnotes).

Sample Research Paper Outline

I. Abstract

— Briefly summarize problem, method and results

II. Introduction

— State the research problem
— Review relevant literature

III. Methodology

— Describe the research design and all procedures followed

IV. Results

— Present analyses of data

V. Discussion

— Present interpretations of data

VI. Conclusion

— Summarize important findings
— Make recommendations for future research and practice

VII. References

— Cite all resources mentioned in the text

VIII. Appendices

— Include instruments used to gather data
— Approvals from Human Studies Committee, etc.

See also: