The Capstone experience involves identifying an information problem in a real-world setting and developing the means to address it. Capstone projects can be research-oriented or design-oriented. Solutions are typically interactive, meaning the end product is something that can be implemented and used.
Goals for the Capstone experience include:
- Define the information problem or opportunity
- Determine what techniques to use to master this information problem or opportunity
- Synthesize all aspects of the information problem; integrate people, technology and information
- Make a positive difference for the community; be it a business, school, library, hospital, or other organization
- Choose a topic or focus you are passionate about
The Capstone course involves the following components:
- INFX 595 Capstone I (2 credits)
- Analysis and preliminary design of an approved individual or group research or implementation project demonstrating professional-level knowledge and skills
- Taken in winter quarter
- INFX 596 Capstone II (3 credits)
- Implementation of a project demonstrating professional-level knowledge and skills based on a project plan developed in INFX 595
- Prerequisite: INFX 595
- Taken in spring quarter
Capstone is celebrated in an event in late May/early June featuring oral and written presentations. View Capstone archives, including past event programs.
MSIM students should also note:
- You may begin your Capstone project after completing all the MSIM core courses, and a total of at least 30 credits in the program
- The Capstone may be project based (engagement with a client to consult on and design a solution to an information need) or research based (you work on your own research agenda or that of a client's; deliverables include the research results)
- You (your team) are responsible for the project management of your Capstone, under the guidance of the instructor of record and teaching assistants
- Working with a team is encouraged and ideal, though individual projects are currently allowed. Teams should be no larger than 4 members
- Find Capstone sponsors and project ideas via iCareers, reach out to your own networks, or approach new organizations to pitch an idea
- MSIM students are expected to have completed IMT 587 (Principles of Information Project Management) or an equivalent course or experience
- Students may not undertake internships and Capstone projects concurrently with the same sponsor
- Capstone is optional for students who entered the Mid-Career MSIM program in Autumn 2015 or later
Capstone Information Sessions take place each autumn and spring. Info sessions generally cover how to decide on a project, identify a sponsor, form a team, human subjects considerations, and prepare for the start of the Capstone course. In addition, student groups and outside organizations host Capstone sessions to promote potential sponsorships and projects.
- Recording of the spring 2014 Info Session for Capstone 2015
- Presentation from the Capstone Info Session
- Human Subjects Guidance for Capstone Projects
- Recording of the SLA, AIMS, and ASIS&T student-hosted event in autumn 2013 featuring potential Capstone sponsors
- Recording of the Costco Capstone presentation in autumn 2013
The primary goal of your project is to demonstrate your mastery of the knowledge that you have gained in your program. You may emphasize different components of your learning, but will be expected to show how all your education has contributed to the solution you come up with for your problem. Examples might include:
- Develop a system design for adoption by the client and include socio-technical evaluation.
- Do a requirements study for the creation and integration of taxonomies in an information management system and provide recommended solution for adoption by the client.
- Build a policy portfolio for an organization in a specific information management area.
- Conceive and design a new department for an organization that centralizes the management of information resources and create a plan for how to get the department established.
- Perform a system integration between two data systems that requires you to map between the schemas of each system, draw data from each and produce a unified view.
- Assess the information needs of a group of people. Determine where in the organization the information all exists and design a methodology for drawing it all together into a unified view.
- Perform an information inventory across a large and diverse set of documents.
- Create a system design for the incorporation of taxonomies in a portal or web UI of client’s product.
- Do a requirements study incorporating needs assessment, analysis of technologies, proposed solution, ROI.
- Analyze a defined collection of information in its existing state and usage. Develop a set of recommendations for expanding or shifting the focus of the collection, including the means for description, cataloging and tracking of the collection. Include a review of existing and potential technologies.
- Assess a program by defining metrics and providing an analysis of the success of the program through various measures.
- Research best practices for information vendor assessment and synthesize to produce a set of recommendations.
- Design mobile/virtual service for users of a given library. Analyze technology, hosting options and modes of delivery.
For any project, think in terms of the deliverables you will provide to document the end result of your work, and make sure that you have scoped the project well enough to come up with some concrete products at the end of the quarter. They may be interim reports, a finished product or a completed project plan ready for approval.
Be aware that students may not undertake an Independent Study and a Capstone project concurrently on the same topic, nor may they undertake an internship and a Capstone project concurrently with the same sponsor.