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Capstone FAQs

The Capstone project is a way for you to individualize and personalize your educational experience here at UW. You get to choose your path, your direction, your focus, and your mentor. We hope you feel empowered to pursue your passions and feel supported in your efforts. Still have questions about the Capstone? Click each question below to read more about our most frequently asked questions from Honors students completing their Capstones. 


Once a capstone mentor has agreed to oversee your project,  you both must complete the Honors Capstone Proposal. You complete the top half of the form and submit to your capstone mentor. They will review your proposal and submit to the Honors College.  This project proposal should identify your question/problem, place it in the critical, scientific or creative conversation, state your methodology, and provide a timeline for the completion of its various stages. If you need any help with this process, please reach out to the Capstone Co-Coordinators at
No, you may work with any UW faculty member or “community mentor” who has agreed to oversee your research/creative/innovative work and has expertise in your field of interest. The Honors College does not assign mentors for capstone projects, but the Capstone Co-Coordinators ( are available to provide support in finding a mentor for your Capstone project. Faculty and community mentors work directly with students on the specifics of their Capstone projects, while Honors Capstone coordinators provide administrative support and assist students on timely completion of the requirements of the Capstone experience. If you are enrolled in a major (eg., engineering, education, nursing, music, statistics, international studies and others) that has a required capstone or senior design project, the instructor for the course may likely be your faculty mentor. 
Your capstone mentor needs to read your Honors Capstone Proposal submission. Your mentor will be asked to accept (or decline) the proposal, share any feedback, and send the proposal form to the Honors College. The Honors Capstone Coordinators will work closely with students and mentors to help ensure successful capstone proposals.

No, you don’t need to sign up for a class to complete the Honors Capstone. 

We do offer an independent study. You can take up to 3 credit hours of an Honors independent study per semester for up to a total of 6 hours overall.  Remember that these hours will count as upper division electives but do not meet any specific requirements towards your degree or your Honors minor. For more information or to initiate this process, please contact

Capstone projects range in length, and there is no definitive answer to “how long does an Honors capstone have to be?” The best way to identify an appropriate length for your capstone project is to discuss with your faculty mentor what would be appropriate given the nature of your project. Whatever the project’s precise length, we expect that it will be substantial in terms of your commitment and your educational development. 

Yes! Check out student funding opportunities to learn more about our Enriched Education Grants, Capstone Research/Creative Grants, Capstone Completion grants and more to help support your work.  

If you have a capstone project idea that would involve human subject research, your faculty mentor will likely have to submit an IRB (Institutional Review Board) application on your behalf before any research begins. This application process is routinely completed by capstone mentors and Honors students. You and your mentor should review the UW IRB Guidelines to determine if you need to file an application. If you have questions, please contact the Honors Capstone Coordinators, Dr. Joslyn Cassady and Dr. Thomas Grant, at

The Honors College supports collaboration and will accept proposals for collaborative projects under the following guidelines: 

  • There is a strong rationale for a capstone to be collaborative 
  • The students, the faculty mentor, and Capstone Coordinator meet prior to the start of the capstone work to discuss the structure of the project 
  • It is clear, in writing and from the outset, who is responsible for what part(s) of the project 
  • Each student, after the completion of the capstone project, must produce a reflection on the nature of the collaboration: how it worked and what was valuable 
  • Each student gives an oral presentation on the project that highlights their individual contribution to the project 

Undertaking the Honors Capstone process is a significant commitment to a significant amount of work, but there are important benefits to consider:     

  • An opportunity to explore, research, and create something that interests you

  • Gaining/honing a particular body of knowledge or skill set

  • Gaining experience in your public presentation and speaking abilities

  • Opportunity to reflect on and synthesize your undergraduate years of intellectual and personal growth

  • Development of professional relationships with a faculty mentor

  • Demonstration of academic motivation and intellectual specialization through a project to showcase to graduate programs or employers

  • Strong sense of accomplishment on having completed a significant research, creative, community-based, or entrepreneurial project

  • Honors distinction that is recorded on your transcript as an Honors Minor

You may contact the Honors Capstone Coordinators, Dr. Joslyn Cassady and Dr. Thomas Grant, at   



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