Capstone Advice From a Writing Major

Just a bit ago, I was working on my capstone for my Writing major. Over the course of two hours, I plucked out words that muddled the meaning of a sentence, and I inserted commas to correct comma faults best research paper writing service. While every capstone is different (each major has different requirements and expectations), some simple tips can apply to any senior project, no matter what discipline it’s for.

Tip 1: Pick something you really care about. As I said earlier, I spent two hours on a Sunday editing my paper. The day before, I spent another two hours on it. Over 7,000 words and 20 pages are in my capstone. Since you’ll be dedicating a lot of time and energy to this, make sure the topic is something that you’re passionate about. If you’re into it, you (and your future audience) will want to turn to the next page of your lengthy project, and if you aren’t, you’ll make it an excruciating experience.

Tip 2: Focus on your passion, and don’t give up on it! I remember when I was coming up with the first budding ideas for my capstone. At first, there were snags in the road, and my professor informed me that my original ideas were 1) too all over the place and 2) sounded more like a sociology or psychology capstone. She was right; after a discussion with her, my thesis was refined and concise, and more appropriate for my major. With that being said, figure out how you can tweak your original idea to satisfy the requirements and yourself.

Tip 3: Know your process and pace yourself. I’m the kind of person who likes to write under pressure. I somehow convinced myself that my first draft’s due date was a week earlier than it actually was. Because of that, and along with my professor saying she wanted 20 rough pages or 6 polished pages, I mind dumped everything in 20 pages. This was really helpful because I focused on what really worked, took out what didn’t, and shaped the paper over the remainder of the semester.

Everyone has a different way of going about things; maybe you would’ve liked to do the 6 polished pages and complete the project in increments. Maybe you like detailed outlines. Maybe you like mind dumping too. Whatever you prefer, please, please, please. PACE YOURSELF! It helps in the long run. Take it from a master procrastinator; I couldn’t have possibly made my capstone as great as it is now had I waited until the last minute.

Tip 4: Take breaks from the capstone. We’re all college students, so it’s not too difficult to be distracted by other work but, honestly, this correlates with Tip 3. If you space it out, you’ll be able to take a break from the capstone and then return to it with fresh eyes. Please. Take it from a master procrastinator who’s also a writing major with a good understanding of the writing process. Fresh eyes are the best for any paper but especially a lengthy one. When you look at something for too long, you miss errors, get stuck in your own head, and can’t get a full grasp on the paper, which leads me to the final tip.

Tip 5: Bring other people into your capstone process. I love to talk things out with people I trust because things make sense to me in that way. I can’t stress how grateful I am for the many conversations with my professors and my boyfriend, who probably knows my capstone as much as I do by now. Ask for someone to read it over if you don’t have a peer and/or faculty reader. Visit the Writing Center. Read certain passages aloud to someone and see if it sounds right. Talk it through. Remember, don’t get stuck in your head.

Good luck with your current or future capstone. Don’t worry; they’re not as scary as they might seem. If you take your time and love what you’re researching, you’ll produce a body of work that will bring you a lot of pride.

P.S. Maybe invest in Grammarly too…