The Capstone Project allows you to develop past scholarship in more detail or celebrate past course themes in a creative composition.

The Capstone project is an optional add-on to the Graduate Diploma in Language and Literature at Signum University. Students may elect to complete a creative or academic Capstone after completing five graduate courses (the full Graduate Diploma program). Students interested in continuing on to earn a a Master of Arts in Language and Literature should not complete a Capstone, as they will have the opportunity to complete a full MA thesis at the end of the MA program.

This page provides an overview of the guidelines for preparing and developing a Creative or Academic Capstone project at the close of the Graduate Diploma in Language and Literature. Its guidelines do not relate to the MA Thesis. For further questions, contact your Thesis Director, or if a Director has not yet been assigned, contact your advisor.

Capstone Outcome

Students who complete five courses at Signum should show mastery of the three Graduate Diploma outcomes:

  • Community. Recipients will be able to contribute meaningfully to discussions and debates in their specific areas of interest.
  • Textual Analysis: Support. Recipients will be able to develop evidence-based arguments about literary texts and/or literary translations.
  • Textual Analysis: Synthesis. Recipients will be able to compose written arguments or translations that synthesize primary and secondary texts.

In addition, the Capstone project, whether academic or creative, should demonstrate the following outcome:

  • Writing. Recipients will be able to design and produce an extended scholarly or original creative work that identifies and appropriately speaks to a specific genre, audience, and form.

Capstone Options

Academic Capstone

  • 5000-10000 words, not including the abstract and works cited page.

A student may elect to complete a new project or may adapt a previous (class) essay into an extended scholarly piece (substantial revisions would be expected). Since the Capstone is intended to be a single-semester project, care should be taken to ensure that the project is manageable; consultation with the Capstone Coordinator is recommended.

Creative Capstone

  • Creative prose: 10000-15000 words. A shorter prose work would often include a more complex concept or conceit, such as expansive worldbuilding, an invented language, or extensive historical research, but the possibilities are endless. 
  • Creative poetry: approximately 2000-4000 words of poetry.

All creative Capstone projects must be accompanied by a preface or introduction of 1500-2000 words that provides scholarly or publisher-appropriate context for the writing, including its place in contemporary literature or its suitability for a particular audience. 

Capstone Application

During the Capstone semester, students will enroll in the three-credit Capstone class and work closely with a faculty mentor to complete a scholarly or creative writing project.

Prior to beginning this phase, all students will need to complete and submit an application outlining the proposed project, necessary sources, the structure of the finished work, and a loose timeline for the semester. It will be used by the thesis coordinator to help you find a suitable mentor.

Upon approval of your application, you’ll be able to register for your capstone semester.

Capstone Application Deadlines

Desired Capstone Semester Application Due By…
Spring Nov. 15 (the previous year)
Summer March 15
Fall July 15

All thesis applications must be submitted to Signum’s Capstone Coordinator.

Contact Us!

Questions about the capstone process should be directed to the capstone coordinator or your capstone mentor. For all other questions, you can use our contact form.