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General Education

University of Missouri

The Capstone Experience: A Definition

The undergraduate capstone experience is designed to bring reflection and focus to the whole of the college experience. It should encourage students to integrate facets of their area of concentration with important concepts from related disciplines.

This culminating college experience should focus on some feature of the student's area of concentration and should require the disciplined use of skills, methodology, and knowledge taught throughout the undergraduate curriculum.

Examples of possible capstone experiences include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • A senior seminar that requires a major project.
  • An undergraduate thesis.
  • A semester project that culminates in a paper, essay, presentation or similar product.
  • An internship to investigate a problem in the workplace, and a paper that asks students to analyze and evaluate the experience.
  • A performance, show or recital appropriate to the discipline, together with relevant supporting assignments.
  • Capstone experiences of all such descriptions will normally be embodied in an academic course.

The general education program requires students pursuing double majors or dual degrees to complete a single capstone course in the program of their choice. Individual departments and degree programs may, however, on their own initiative, require completion of their particular capstone course for all their majors. To receive credit for taking a capstone course, students must earn a grade in the C-range or better.