The Impact of Additional Early Feedback on Doctoral Capstone Proposal Approval
Tuesday, June 26 2:15-2:35 PM
Approximately 40% of doctoral students are unable to complete their independent capstone research at the conclusion of their coursework and of those who do complete the capstone, time to completion is often longer than anticipated. In online universities, students are often successful during their structured course work, but become overwhelmed with the demands of their capstone research and fail to progress. In order to scaffold the capstone process, the program under study has several discrete steps in the completion and review processes such as prospectus (research plan) development, and later the proposal and final study approvals by committee members and the University Research Reviewer (URR). The program recently added another early step to provide structured feedback and additional guidance to assist students in the development of their research plans. This step is the prospectus-stage review by the Research Program Director (RPD) or designee. Grounded by Hattie and Timperley’s model of feedback to enhance student learning, the purpose of this study was to assess the impact of the RPD review by examining differences in the number of days to proposal approval between students who had their prospectus reviewed by the RPD and students who did not. Differences in the number of URR proposal returns were also examined. Data analysis included analysis of variances for the two dependent measures and descriptive statistics for the study sample.