2capstone project requirementsthe capstone course project must demonstrate B u s i n e s s F i n a n c e
While everyone has their own process for writing, creating an outline is often an important early step in the process in all types of writing, even for the most seasoned writers. By creating an outline, you draft a plan that organizes your thoughts, helps you see gaps in your thought process, and enables you to decide where in your paper you will address particular issues.An annotated outline is a document that organizes the main sections to be included in your paper. The annotations are based on thinking through your approach to the paper and developing enough detail that anyone who reads the outline can follow your thought process.The purpose of this assessment is as follows:
- To build an annotated outline that shows the key sections of your analysis, the ethical considerations, and the leadership and collaboration aspects that you intend to include in your capstone project. With this outline, faculty can understand the organization and purpose of your paper; upon approval, you may move forward to writing the capstone project (Assessment 4).
- To help you manage your work because you will need to start researching now (if you have not already) in order to create your annotated outline.
- To demonstrate that you know how to cite in APA format by including some quotations or paraphrases from researched sources. The sources you include in the outline may or may not be used in your actual paper.
- To demonstrate your ability to create a well-organized document, suitable for academic or business, that meets established criteria.
For this assessment, create an annotated outline that provides a framework of your capstone project. Begin by reviewing the MBA Capstone Project Description [PDF]. Your annotated outline must state the name of your chosen organization and must include the following items:
- Identify the main sections to be developed in the paper and tie them to the project objectives.
- In your key sections, you should use at least four main headings; these sections make up the body of your outline.
- Each heading must have at least two sub-points to develop the detail required.
- Include a description of each major point.
- Identify where each supporting reference will be integrated.
- Include at least one reference to support each major point of the paper.
- Incorporate relevant quotes or paraphrases from a source that you might use for support, with an APA in-text citation.
- Identify main points that address ethical aspects associated with your chosen business.
- Ethical considerations/aspects should also be one of the headings of your outline.
- Use the program outcomes to help determine the areas of ethics that you might want to cover.
- Include at least one reference to elaborate on how you intend to cover ethics in your project.
- Identify main points that address leadership and collaboration aspects associated with your chosen business.
- Leadership and collaboration considerations/aspects should also be one of the headings of your outline.
- Review the program outcomes to determine the areas of leadership and collaboration that you should consider.
- Include at least one reference to elaborate on how you intend to cover leadership and collaboration in your project.
- Identify main points of your recommendations. Your recommendations should also be one of the headings of your outline.
- Identify credible evidence to support an analysis.
- For the evidence you provide, include key points to clarify why it matters and how it will inform the analysis.
Your annotated outline should have these sections:
- An executive summary.
- An introduction.
- The body of your outline should be comprised of at least four main headings with additional subheadings and points. (Never use the word “Body” as a heading or subheading.)
- A conclusion.
- References. Use APA style and formatting for all the sources you use in the annotated outline.
- Style: This outline should be written in academic format; refer to the corresponding MBA Academic and Professional Document Guidelines. It should be double spaced, use subheadings, and be well organized and well written.
- Communication: Ensure written communication is free of errors that detract from the overall message and quality.
- APA guidelines: Format your paper according to current APA style and formatting.
- Resources: Use at least four resources from credible resources.
- Length: Your outline should be 2–5 pages.
- Font and font size: Use 12 point, Times New Roman.
It is highly recommended that you submit your outline to Smarthinking (linked in the MBA Program Resources) to request feedback on ideas and organization (that is, global issues). Smarthinking can be instrumental in helping you get a solid, flowing outline and foundation to your capstone.
By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies through corresponding scoring guide criteria:
- Competency 1: Apply foundational knowledge and an understanding of business systems, processes, and technology within and across core disciplines.
- Identify the main sections to be developed in the paper and tie them to the project objectives.
- Competency 2: Integrate information across disciplines and from differing perspectives.
- Identify where each supporting reference will be integrated
- Competency 3: Think critically and analytically to provide evidence-based solutions to business challenges and opportunities.
- Identify main points of recommendations.
- Competency 5: Lead and collaborate in virtual, global, and culturally diverse environments.
- Identify main points that address leadership and collaboration aspects associated with the chosen business.
- Competency 6: Integrate principles of ethics and integrity into business decisions.
- Identify main points that address ethical aspects associated with the chosen business.
- Competency 7: Communicate clearly and effectively in a business environment.
- Cite sources and references in proper APA format.
You should consider adding this to your personal ePortfolio. Being able to demonstrate the logic used to construct a proposal is a valuable skill set. Additionally, your finished capstone project should be added to your ePortfolio, and by having the annotated outline you can show how you arrived at the final deliverable
- Planning and executing the strategic and tactical elements of a comprehensive project.
- Integrating and demonstrating the business leadership skills and techniques youhavelearned throughout the MBA program.
- Communicating your analysis and recommendations for a real organization both in written form and in a formal presentation.
- Completing your MBA program with an experience that reinforces and integrates what you have learned throughout your MBA program.The following information outlines the requirements and work associated with the capstone project for MBA-FPX5910.Capstone Project ExamplesYou have a wide variety of choice when it comes to choosing a capstone project that is personally interesting and rewarding to you. It is your responsibility to propose a capstone topic and scope that will allow you to demonstrate all of the MBA program outcomes.Examples of project types that might be proposed to meet these requirements include, but are not limited to:
- A strategic plan developed for an organization to use that helps them solve a problem or take advantage of an opportunity.
- A strategic analysis conducted on a selected part or area of an organization.
- A case study developed on a selected part of or situation within an organization.
- An intervention developed to address an organizational issue; for example, a workshop or training activity. The intervention should be broad-based enough to demonstrate the program-level outcomes.
- A consulting report developed to analyze a problematic issue within an organization; the issue and analysis should be broad-based enough to demonstrate program-level outcomes.You may propose other project types for the capstone project so long as you are able to identify how the proposed project satisfies the requirement of demonstrating the program-level outcomes. When choosing your project type and/or topic, keep in mind that it must result in recommendations, next steps, or some other type of actionable, evidence-based takeaways for your intended audience, user, or subject of the project.
1Capstone Project Selection and Proposal GuidelinesThe organization must be real, not fictitious. This may be an organization to which you have direct access for data gathering or one for which you will gather data via published sources. In either case, it must be an organization for which you can gather the data needed to complete the project. If need be, you may be allowed to use a disguised name for the organization in the project report, but you must disclose to faculty what actual organization is being used as the setting for the project.There are certain organizations that we want you to avoid using for your capstone. These organizations have been overly covered in the various business courses and might not be “fresh” enough for you to showcase your MBA outcomes. For that reason, we encourage you to select more low-profile organizations, or ones you can easily access for researching and analyzing. Do not select these organizations for your capstone project:
- Proctor & Gamble.
- Johnson & Johnson.
- Harley-Davidson Motor Company.
- The Coca-Cola Company.
- Apple Inc.
- Starbucks Coffee Company.
- T oyota Motor Corporation.
- T arget Corporation.
- McDonald’s Corp.
- Burger King.
- Ford Motor Company.When proposing a capstone project, you will be required to briefly identify how the proposed project ensures the demonstration of all seven program outcomes.The scope of effort required should be such that it is doable in a 15–20 page paper, which is to be submitted in Assessment 4.
2Capstone Project RequirementsThe capstone course project must demonstrate your achievement of the MBA program outcomes. The following table is taken from the Capstone Project Scoring Guide, at the Proficient level. It outlines the expectations, at a minimum, for demonstrating each program outcome. (For the best grade possible, strive to meet the grading criteria at the Distinguished level.)MBA Program Outcome Grading Criteria (at the Proficient Level)
|1. Apply foundational knowledge and an understanding of business systems, processes, and technology within and across core disciplines.||Applies foundational knowledge (theories, models, practices) and an understanding of business systems, processes, and technology within and across core disciplines.|
|2. Integrate information across disciplines and from differing perspectives.||Integrates most relevant supportive and conflicting information (data, insights, best practices) across disciplines from differing primary functional perspectives individually and holistically.|
|3. Think critically and analytically to provide evidence-based solutions to business challenges and opportunities.||Develops logical, well-supported, solutions based on relevant, sound, logical, and credible evidence (data, insights, analyses, best practices) to solve business challenges and opportunities.|
|4. Apply innovative, strategic, and sustainable approaches to business practice and planning.||Applies innovative, strategic, and sustainable (long- term) approaches to business practice and planning.|
|5. Lead and collaborate in virtual, global, and culturally diverse environments.||Applies leadership and collaboration principles and strategies for virtual, global, and culturally diverse environments.|
|6. Integrate principles of ethics and integrity into business decisions.||Integrates principles of ethics and integrity into business decisions by assessing ethical implications and resolving ethical conflicts and dilemmas.|
Capstone DeliverablesYou will plan, execute, and deliver your capstone project; it should include the components and requirements listed in this table.Assessment Brief Assessment Description Submission Requirements
|Assessment 1: Capstone Project Summary||You will develop a brief summary of your capstone project so that faculty can approve your organization choice and scope and provide appropriate guidance. The project summary will also list out each program outcome and how the topic allows you to demonstrate mastery of each.||
|Assessment 2: Capstone Proposal||Once your topic and scope are approved, you will submit a formal proposal that includes a concise analysis of your business topic. You will also explain how you will leverage your leadership strengths assessment results and coaching experience (provided by BetterUp), as well as your knowledge and experience as a leader, to support your capstone work.||
|Assessment 3: Annotated Outline||To help you stay on track and receive faculty feedback, you will create an annotated outline of your paper. This document will list all of the major sections and sub-sections of your paper and include some resources.||
|Assessment 4: Capstone Project||The final written project report will be a formal document prepared for the key stakeholders of your project. The structure and length of the document will vary according to the type of project being undertaken, but the report is expected to be substantial.In Appendix A, you can view the Capstone Project Scoring Guide. Be sure to review these criteria often throughout your project to ensure you are fulfilling the expectations of the MBA program outcomes.||
|Assessment 5: Reflection and Goal Setting(Note: this assessment is not part of the Capstone paper)||This paper will summarize how your strengths—as identified in the BetterUp leadership assessment and improved through your coaching—helped you to create an effective capstone project. Your paper will include a reflection of your growth, how you have applied your strengths, & how you would apply those strengths further to enact the recommendations you made in your Capstone paper.||
|Assessment 6: Capstone Presentation||This formal oral presentation will be supported by a PowerPoint presentation including slides with notes. You will record the oral presentation and upload it to the courseroom for formal review by faculty. Your presentation should present all facets of the capstone project.||
Credible ResourcesThe majority of your resources should be from credible sources such as peer-reviewed, scholarly journals and articles found in the Capella library. Other resources/databases, also available from the Capella library, are the Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Lexis Nexis, IBIS, et cetera. By now you should have solid skills in navigating the Capella library, but just in case you need a refresher, remember that we have a custom library guide, Research Guide – MBA, which is an excellent place to start your research.