What Is a Capstone Course?

A capstone course is a class designed for a student in college or graduate school to demonstrate mastery of a particular subject. Capstone courses have many different structures and vary among universities and departments.

Most schools use capstone courses exclusively for students completing their final semesters of college. Capstone courses may focus on completing a particular project such as a thesis, dissertation or other large research project, or may focus on building a portfolio of work in preparation for entering the workforce. Capstones sometimes exist in the form of field or internship programs designed to assess the knowledge a student has learned in a degree program.