This course allows the student to demonstrate public health competencies through the completion of a major written paper on a significant public health issue or topic.
The Capstone Project should be taken as the last course of the MPH program, and it requires substantial preparation; the student is expected to begin planning more than three months before enrolling in the course. A Timeline of Responsibilities 2021-2022 (PDF) lists activities and deadlines several semesters in advance.
This website describes the course and its responsibilities in detail. For further information, please contact the MPH Program at email@example.com or (414) 955-4510.
Preparing For Your Capstone
Overview (PDF) - Provides a general explanation of the Capstone Project course.
Planning your Project (PDF) - Describes the first steps in Capstone Project planning. Explains the website and course prerequisites, and introduces the major component of the course, the writing of a Master's Paper.
Developing a Proposal (PDF) - Provides general information about the development of a proposal as well as specifics regarding the proposal form and submission process.
Working on your Project (PDF) -
Describes the submission and formatting processes as well as the other final responsibilities of submitting a PowerPoint presentation and the Graduating Student Final Competency Self Assessment.
Sections of the Master's Paper (PDF) - Explains how to organize your Master’s Paper and create an outline as well as the different sections of the paper: title page, abstract, introduction, purpose statement, literature review, methods, results, discussion, conclusion, references, and appendices
An original Master’s Paper on a significant public health or community health issue or topic will be the primary component of the Capstone Project. All papers are required to contain a comprehensive literature review. The Master’s Paper can take many forms and may include:
- Program Development. Students work to develop a program in areas such as health promotion or a community intervention.
- Program Evaluation. Students conduct an evaluation of a public or community health program to determine effectiveness and outcomes.
- Community Assessment. Students conduct various aspects of a community health assessment.
- Community Health Planning. Students develop various aspects of a community health plan.
- Public Health Policy. Students research and develop a public policy analysis or an advocacy statement related to a significant public or community health issue.
- Applied Research. Students conduct research on a public or community health topic of interest.
Presentation: Working on your Project (PDF)
A culminating experience is one that requires a student to synthesize and integrate knowledge acquired in coursework and other learning experiences and to apply theory and principles in a situation that approximates some aspect of professional practice. It will be used as one means by which faculty judge whether the student has mastered the body of public health knowledge and can demonstrate proficiency in the required public health competencies.
Presentation: Overview of Capstone Project (PDF)
Presentation: Planning your Project (PDF)
Students are required to maintain CITI (Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative) certification in the Protection of Human Research Subjects throughout the Capstone Project. The course may be accessed at the CITI Website, and students must register for one of the following groups.
Group 1 – Biomedical Investigators, Co-Investigators, and Study Coordinators
Group 3 – Appropriate for all IRB, DSMB, DSMC, and GCRC members and everyone involved in Both Biomedical & Social/Behavioral Research
Group 4 – Social/Behavioral Research PI’s, Co-PI’s, Study Coordinators
A copy of the Human Research Curriculum Completion Report should be submitted to Kim Contardi, MPH Program Manager, via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by fax to (414) 955-6529.
Writing Your Master's Paper
Presentation: Sections of the Master's Paper (PDF)
Formatting Standards of Capstone Paper(PDF)
The paper should be of publishable quality and include the following:
- Title Page – Include name, title of project, Faculty Advisor’s name, and project’s time frame.
Title Page Template (PDF)
- Abstract – Provide an overview of the paper. The abstract should not exceed 300 words.
Sample Abstract (PDF)
- Introduction – A brief overview of the paper including a summary of the background leading to the research question or purpose of the paper.
Sample Introduction with Purpose Statement (PDF)
- Purpose Statement or Research Question(s) – If more than one purpose or question is applicable, limit the description to one brief paragraph each.
Sample Introduction with Purpose Statement (PDF)
- Literature Review – Identify and review literature and previous research applicable to the paper topic. This section should include a synthesis and discussion of the reviewed literature to identify strengths, weaknesses, trends, opportunities, etc. The review should provide the basis for the paper.
- Methods – Describe the methodology utilized in the development of the paper. This might include the design, setting, participants, intervention, and main outcome measures of the Capstone Project, or it might provide details regarding sampling, measurement, data collection, and analysis of research.
- Results – Present the results of the Capstone Project. Explain the product of the effort put forth.
Sample Results (PDF)
- Discussion – Discuss, in detail, the results. Place the results in the context of the existing base of knowledge on the topic, and discuss limitations.
Sample Discussion (PDF)
- Conclusion – Provide discrete conclusions supported by evidence. Express any further study or effort implied by the conclusions, and give equal attention to positive and negative conclusions.
- References – Properly and consistently cite references in a reputable format of the student’s choice.
Citation Guide (website)
- Appendices – Support materials may include IRB letters, survey/interview instruments, letters of support, data analysis coding sheets, or others.
Examples of Previous Students' Abstracts & PowerPoint Presentations
Capstone Project Proposal – 10%
Master’s Paper - 80%
PowerPoint Presentation - 10%
Required 10 weeks before enrollment.
Required before the end of the final semester.
Required at least six weeks before enrollment.
Capstone Project Proposal (DOC)
Capstone Project Proposal Sample (PDF)
Begins three months before enrollment.
Review more than three months prior to enrollment in Capstone Project course.
Required two weeks prior to end of semester.
Required by the end of the final semester.
Required before the end of the semester.
Faculty Advisor Evaluation of Student's Capstone Project (DOC)