Dissertion and doctoral capstone – Let us shift our focus to the difference between a dissertation and doctoral capstone. On the one hand, the outcome of a dissertation is the traditional five-chapter document that the student presents for examination. The doctoral capstone, on the other hand, is often presented in two parts, of which one is a deliverable—can be a paper of publishable length. A portfolio, policy manual, curriculum, change management plan or a software. The other part is the final report where the student describes the process of creating the deliverable and the relevant scholarly information that support it. This part requires excellent writing skills and as such; the student must be prepared to on how to go about it.
The focus of the two documents also differs; on the one hand, a dissertation should be an original contribution that a student makes to the body of literature and theory in a given discipline. The researcher should identify a gap in the existing body of works and suggest ways addressing the problems. In most colleges and universities around the world, a PhD dissertation is expected to offer solutions to real-world problems and be relevant to the field the student if specializing on. However, some colleges have a ‘no dissertation’ option for their students. The disciplines or the colleges that have no doctoral research project as a mandatory component. The course requires the students to attain their PhDs by coursework, but even then, they have to be equipped with research skills.
On the other hand, a doctoral capstone is supposed to allow the researcher to extend the research to deliver a solution immediately to an issue within the discipline and in a real-world setting. Unlike a dissertation, there can be several forms of a doctoral capstone deliverable. First, it could be the writing of software aimed at solving a specific technical problem. Secondly, it can be in form a new of curriculum meant to solve a specific problem in nursing practice education.
The difference between a dissertion and doctoral capstone can also be seen in the period to their completion. These variations in period depend on the kind of program you are undertaking. The debate around the doctoral project vs dissertation should be clear on the fact in both cases; the reduction of time to completion does not mean in any way that a topic is less rigorous. Both are time-consuming and demanding, which means if you are a taking a doctoral study in any of the two. You have to prepare for long hours of study, less of sleep and a lot of headache.