Senior Capstone

This requirement is an academic, credit-bearing experience completed during the senior year (including the previous summer). It is designed to ensure that concentrators participate in an experience that applies basic family knowledge (theories, frameworks, concepts) to real families in a setting beyond the classroom. It must be approved by the chair of the Department of Social Work and Family Studies prior to enrollment. The experience and commitment learning is presented as a graded assignment for a public audience. This occurs in the Senior Seminar in Family Studies (FS 391). Through the experience, students demonstrate attainment of intended learning outcomes for family studies.

Guidelines for the senior capstone experience:

  • Includes a minimum of 40 hours devoted to direct experience with families (more than one);
  • Can be domestic or international;
  • Can be taken either graded or Pass/No Pass (P/N);
  • Can be submitted for distinction in a major, if it meets that department’s guidelines for distinction.
  • Must be approved by faculty member in the Department of Social Work and Family Studies prior to enrollment.

The experience must be:

  • Beyond the classroom; and
  • Approved by the Department Chair or Faculty Advisor; and
  • Taught or supervised by a St. Olaf faculty member.

The experience may be:

  • A project in a senior year course, social work practicum, or nursing clinical; or
  • A senior year independent study (294); or
  • A senior year independent research project (396); or
  • A senior year internship with families (quarter, half- or full-credit; 294).
  • A summer experience prior to senior year that involves direct experience with families.