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Bachelor's · Liberal Arts · Liberal Arts

LA498 LIBERAL ARTS CAPSTONE

  • FALL - 15 WEEK 2019
  • Section All
  • 3 Credits
  • 08/26/2019 to 12/08/2019
  • Modified 03/19/2019

Description

This course is designed to evaluate students who are completing their bachelor’s degrees in Liberal Arts. The course content is centered upon the four Liberal Arts degree outcomes of critical thinking, communication, diversity, and ethics, and upon a suite of competencies that relate directly to workforce needs and values. In this course students will broaden and refine their understanding of these outcomes and competencies, apply them in assignments, and reflect on how these concepts have shaped their college learning. All original writing and research will focus on a global issue related to at least one of the student’s degree depths/area(s) of focus (so awareness of one’s pathway to the degree is essential).

This is an intense course requiring significant scholarly research and writing and includes both individual and collaborative work. Assignments are scaffolded: that is, they build from one module to the next. Students should plan to dedicate a minimum of 13-20 hours each module for Capstone-related work; actual time will depend on your research, writing, and revision skills as well as remediation needs.

Students are strongly cautioned against attempting this Capstone course simultaneously with another Excelsior College course.

Prerequisite(s)

Completion of Written English, Ethics, Information Literacy, and an Arts & Sciences depth required. Students must be within 15 credits of degree completion and obtain advisor approval.

Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

1. Engage in advanced critical thinking skills including demonstrating the ability to remember information, understand and appropriately apply key concepts, analyze phenomena, evaluate and justify positions, and create coherent arguments in the chosen field of study.

Specific competencies related to Outcome #1 Critical Thinking:

#1: Demonstrate advanced analytical thinking skills by producing a significant product using an interdisciplinary approach.

#2: Construct a product that requires incorporation of multiple resources and communication of original perspectives.

#3: Analyze a complex issue or problem using appropriate techniques drawn from at least two fields of study.

#4: Create a coherent, well-reasoned argument about a public issue that demonstrates understanding of multiple positions and clearly articulates the chosen position.

2. Demonstrate advanced written and oral communication skills and express complex ideas with clarity and precision.

Specific competencies related to Outcome #2 Communication:

#5: Compose a well-organized, articulate, and informative research-based written document that adheres to genre and disciplinary conventions.

#6: Deliver a well-organized, articulate, and informative research-based oral presentation that adheres to genre and disciplinary conventions.

#7: Create collaborative communications (written and/or oral, as appropriate to the discipline) that clearly present the group’s consensus on complex ideas to an academic or work-related audience.

3. Identify and characterize their own cultural background and experiences in comparison to those of others and evaluate pathways to equitable solutions that recognize the strengths inherent in a diverse and multicultural understanding of world issues.

Specific competencies related to Outcome #3 Diversity:

#8: Describe, explain and evaluate the sources of his/her own perspectives on selected issues in culture, society, politics, the arts or global relations and compare that perspective with other views.

#9: Identify the particular strengths and challenges of several cultural perspectives and suggest ways to use this knowledge to the benefit of a specific community while demonstrating consideration of competing views.

#10: Prepare a reasoned analysis of a problem-solving task involving a significant world issue, bringing competing perspectives to bear on a suggested solution

4. Apply concepts of ethical conduct and social responsibility in decision making and in action.

Specific competencies related to Outcome #4 Ethics:

#11: Identify clearly the important concepts and elements involved in at least two different ethical perspectives on a particular ethical decision, and articulate reasons for choosing one perspective over the other.

#12: Describe and defend the actions that should be undertaken to apply an ethical approach to problem solving, addressing at least one prominent social or cultural problem.

#13: Produce decisions and action plans that demonstrate a thorough appreciation for the consequences and impacts on various groups in society of these decisions and actions.

Deliverables

Click here to view the 8 week Term Schedules.

Click here to view the 15 week Term Schedules.

Course Schedule

Weeks start on Monday,12:01 AM ET and end on Sunday, 11:59 PM ET, US.

Unless otherwise noted, all assigned items are due at the end of the module (by 11:59PM, Sunday).

Week

Module & Title

Reading

Assignments

Online Discussions

Course Outcomes
& Competencies Related to This Module

1-2

Module 1:
Critical Thinking

Instructor Information Forum

Module Notes: The Course Activities

Module Notes: Meet Joe Student

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Ethics; Diverse Cultures; Citation; Oral Presentation

Webtext Chapter 1 (Thinking)

Laal & Laal, Collaborative learning: What is it?

Martin, Rao, & Sloan, Plagiarism, integrity, and workplace deviance: A criterion study.

Nonis & Swift, An examination of the relationship between academic dishonesty and workplace dishonesty: A multicampus investigation.

Did I plagiarize? The types and severity of plagiarism violations.

Webtext Chapter 2 (Perspectives)

Pre-Assessment #3: M1A1: Complete Webtext Ch. 1 activities

M1A2:Topic Proposal Worksheet


Pre-Assessment #4: M1A3: How to Recognize Plagiarism

M1A4: Complete Webtext Ch. 2 activities

Pre-Assessment #1: M1D1: My Academic Journey oral presentation

Pre-Assessment #2: M1D2: Perils of Plagiarism collaborative discussion

 

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking

Outcome 2: Communication

Outcome 3: Diversity

Outcome 4: Ethics

Note: all outcomes and competencies introduced, none fully assessed

3

Module 2:
Scholarly Inquiry Starts Here

Module Notes: Scholarly Inquiry Starts Here

Webtext Chapter 3 (Ethics)

Assignment Support Resources (all)

 

M2A1: Complete Webtext Ch. 3 activities

M2A2:  Research Proposal

 

M2D1: My Research Proposal

 

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies:
1, 2, 3, 4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competencies: 5, 7

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competency: 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competency: 11

4-5

Module 3:
Scholarship & Collaboration

Module Notes: The Literature Review

Module Notes: Concepts of Diversity

Module Notes: Joe Student Reviews the Literature

Webtext Chapters 4 (Arguments) & 5 (Explanations)

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Diverse Cultures; Citation; Literature Review; Academic Writing

M3A1 & M3A2: Complete Webtext Ch. 4 & 5 activities

M3A3: Matrix document for Literature Review

M3D1: The Global Workplace: Obstacles & Opportunities collaborative activity (First Week)

M3D2: The Global Workplace: Obstacles & Opportunities collaborative activity (Second Week)

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies:
1, 2, 3, 4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competency:  5, 6, 7

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competencies:
8, 9, 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competency: 12

6-7

Module 4:
Diversity & Collaboration

Module Notes: Diversity & Collaboration

Module Notes: Joe Student Adds Ethics to the Mix

Webtext Chapters 6 (Sources) & 7 (Problem Solving)

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Diverse Cultures; Ethics Resources; Literature Review

M4A1: Complete Webtext Ch. 6 activities 

M4A2: Literature Review

M4A3: Complete Webtext Ch. 7 activities

Work ahead on Diversity and Ethics paper due in Module 6

M4D1: Mid-course Review: Applying What You’ve Done So Far

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies: 2, 3, 4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competency: 5, 6, 7

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competencies:
8, 9, 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competency: 13

 

8-9

Module 5:
Diversity & Ethics

Module Notes: Diversity & Ethics

Webtext Chapter 8 (Case Study)

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Diverse Cultures; Ethics; Oral Presentation

M5A1: Complete Webtext Ch. 8 activities

Work ahead on Diversity and Ethics paper due in Module 6

Work ahead on Oral Presentation due in Module 8

 

Work-in-Progress collaborative activity

 

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies: 2, 3

Outcome 2: Communication
Competencies: 5, 6

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competencies:
8, 9, 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competencies: 11, 12, 13

 

10-11

Module 6:
Communication & Ethics

Module Notes: Communication & Ethics

Review Webtext Chapter 8 (Case Study) and all Webtext worksheets

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Diverse Cultures Resources; Ethics; Oral Presentation

M6A1: Diversity and Ethics paper 


Work ahead on Oral Presentation due in Module 8

M6D1: Getting Ready to Speak

Work in Progress collaborative activity

 

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competency: 4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competency: 6

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competencies:
 11, 12

12-13

Module 7:
The Research Paper

Module Notes: The Research Paper

Module Notes: Assembling Your Final Paper

Review Webtext Chapter 8 (Case Study) and all Webtext worksheets

Capstone Research: A Scaffold Approach

Assignment Support Resources: Oral Presentation

Work ahead on Capstone Research paper due in Module 8

 

Work ahead on Oral Presentation due in Module 8

 

M7D1: Peer Feedback: Oral Presentation of Capstone Research

Work in Progress collaborative activity

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies:
1, 2, 3,  4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competencies: 5, 6

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competencies:
8, 9, 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competencies:
11, 12, 13

14-15

Module 8:
Demonstrating Mastery

Module Notes: Demonstrating Mastery

Review Webtext Chapter 8 (Case Study) and all Webtext worksheets

Assignment Support Resources

Wednesday: M8A1: Capstone Research Paper

 

Sunday: M8A2: Script for Oral Presentation of Capstone Research

 

Sunday: M8A2: Oral Presentation of Capstone Research

 

 

 

M8D1: Capstone Reflections

Work in Progress collaborative activity

Outcome 1: Critical Thinking
Competencies:
1, 2, 3, 4

Outcome 2: Communication
Competencies: 5, 6, 7

Outcome 3: Diversity
Competencies:
8, 9, 10

Outcome 4: Ethics
Competencies:
11, 12, 13

 

Evaluation

Grade Ranges

A = 90-100%

B = 80-89%

C = 70-79%

D = 60-69%

F = below 60%

Breakdown

Activity/Assessment

% of Final Grade

Soomo Webtext Assignments

15

Collaborative / Discussion Activities

15

Topic Proposal Worksheet

3

Research Proposal

7

Literature Review

10

Diversity and Ethics Paper

10

Oral Presentation

10

Capstone Research Paper

30

Total

100%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Criteria

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

Course Activities:

Before beginning your course work, be sure to review the Excelsior College Guidelines for Online Interaction (a.k.a. Online Etiquette or "Netiquette"). If you have any questions regarding these guidelines, please feel free to direct them to your instructor.

Soomo Webtext –  15%
This interactive text includes required readings, polls, quizzes, short-answer prompts, response board comments, and worksheets. The worksheets support planning steps for the topic proposal, diversity and ethics papers, and the oral presentation. An individual progress ‘dashboard’ is provided to help you track your progress. Completion of all work within each chapter is expected to advance in the course.

Collaborative  / Discussion Activities – 15%

Some discussion topics may require you to post your initial post prior to being able to view your classmates’ posts.

Collaborative activities in this course are conducted through the discussion forums. These are related to all four Course Outcomes and to multiple competencies. The collaborative activities will require significant individual contributions to each discussion, and ongoing engagement in peer review and problem solving. Engagement in all collaborative activities is expected to advance in the course.

Literature Review – 10%
The Literature Review serves as foundation for your original papers in this course. You are to select a contemporary global issue that is related to at least one of your designated Degree Depths/Area(s) of Focus. You will explain the significance of the issue and examine both congruent findings, debates, and disagreements as part of your analysis and synthesis of the scholarly literature. You will identify themes, trends, and opportunities for further research. You will then summarize, in your own words, the most prominent research and findings related to your topic, supporting your summation with well-reasoned evidence from your literature review and explaining how these findings contribute to the literature and collective knowledge in the field of study.

Diversity and Ethics Paper – 10%
Using the global issue identified in your Literature Review as the foundation for this paper, you will narrow your focus to some aspect of that issue that affects vulnerable and disenfranchised groups. You will analyze and synthesize the findings from the scholarly literature, asking what impact these groups have felt from the policies, decisions, and actions of others; what ethical principles have driven these policies, decisions, and actions; and what strategies and solutions the different parties have come up with. You will examine the issue from multiple perspectives, including your own cultural background and experiences and those of impacted individuals and groups. Using at least two ethical theories, you will evaluate the equity of the different strategies and solutions and recommend areas for further study that might result in more equitable treatment.

Oral Presentation – 10%
Your scaffolded writing assignments will help you construct your final Capstone Research Paper. The oral presentation provides the opportunity to summarize the results of your research and preview your final paper to your audience of peers.

Your presentation must address the significance of the issue, highlight key points of agreement and disagreement in the literature, and address the issues of diversity and ethics as they relate to your selected topic. You will use this presentation to solicit critical feedback from your peers, which you will incorporate when revising your Capstone Research Paper prior to submission.

Capstone Research Paper – 30%
Using the feedback from your instructor and your peers, you will revise and integrate your scaffolded writing projects and the oral presentation into a substantive research paper examining your contemporary global issue. Your paper culminates with your proposed solution, which must be based on a substantive body of research and your original writing and demonstrate equitable and ethical consideration for vulnerable and disenfranchised groups. Demonstrated mastery of the School of Liberal Arts competencies is required.

Formatting and Style for Written Assignments:

All written assignments must be consistent with the APA style guide. Oral assignments must include oral citations consistent with the APA style guide and other instructor-provided resources.

Course Policies

Late Assignment Policy

  • All assignments are expected to be submitted on time. Prior authorization from your instructor is required for late submissions. The first late submission is accepted up to 5 days late without penalty. A late penalty of five percent per day will be assessed when the first late assignment was submitted after the fifth day. Subsequent late submissions are assessed a late penalty of five percent per day (e.g., -5 points each day on a 100-point assignment, or -2.5 points each day on a 50-point assignment). Extenuating circumstances* are considered without penalty.

    No work will be accepted after the final day of the term unless an official course extension has been granted.

Late Quiz/Exam Policy

It is recommended students begin quizzes and exams prior to 9:00 PM Eastern Time. All quizzes and exams must be completed by 11:59 PM Eastern Time. All quizzes and exams are automatically submitted at 11:59 Eastern Time. The learning management system does not permit submission past the time quizzes and exams are due. Your grade will be based on completed work. Students with prior approval for accommodations must plan their start time accordingly. If you have questions, please contact your instructor. Extenuating circumstances* are considered without penalty.

 *Some types of extenuating circumstances that will be considered are:  

  • a serious medical illness or injury to the student, 
  • a death of an immediate family member,
  • a significant change in employment or military status that prevents the student from completing the assignment/assessment, 
  • a significant trauma in the student’s life that impairs the student’s emotional and /or physical health,
  • technical issues that prevent student from completing the assignment/assessment by the designated due date/time.

Documentation maybe asked for extenuating circumstances at the discretion of your instructor. 

Institutional Policies

COURSE PARTICIPATION:

Weekly course participation is required. Please see the Student Participation Policy for more details.

Instructor Participation

Your instructor will:

  • Post a welcome message during the first 24 hours of the course.
  • Schedule real time office hours through the chat room and/or by individual appointment.
  • Communicate with you through the Blackboard communication tools, including internal course messaging.
  • Respond to student communications within two days.
  • Log into the course to review and participate at least three different days a week in 15-week courses, or four different days a week in 8-week courses.
  • Provide you with formative feedback midway through the course based on work submitted to that point.
  • Grade all formative assignments within seven calendar days of each assignment due date in 15-week courses and within four calendar days of each assignment due date in 8-week courses, and grade summative work within five calendar days after the end of the term.

POLICIES:

You are responsible for being familiar with all the policies that are related to your activity in this course. Complete information on Excelsior College policies can be found in the Course Information area or by visiting the Excelsior College Policies page

All student work in this course may be submitted to plagiarism detection software. The reports from this software may be used as evidence in support of disciplinary actions. Please see the policy on Academic Honesty for more details.

Additional Items

This course contains technologies listed below. Click each link to view each technology’s accessibility statement.

View more information about Disability Services.