Approved by Faculty Senate.

--University Studies Course Approval

Department or Program: Department of Nursing

Course Number: N491

Course Title: Capstone Experience in Role Synthesis

Catalog Description: The Capstone Experience in Role Synthesis course with intensive clinical practice and oral presentations of service projects at a level appropriate to a group of practitioners in the profession. This course is a flagged course to meet the University Studies Program flag for oral presentations..

This is an existing course that has previously been approved by A2C2 X .


This is a new course proposal _____. (If this is a new course proposal, the WSU Curriculum Approval Form must also be completed as in the process prescribed by WSU Regulation 3-4.)

Department Contact Person for this course: Norma Blankenfeld, MS, RN


The proposed course is designed to satisfy the requirements in (select one area only):

Course Requirements

A. Basic Skills: (October 4, 2000)

B. Arts & Sciences Core: (November 1, 2000)

______ 1. College Reading and Writing

______ 2. Oral Communication

______ 3. Mathematics

______ 4. Physical Development and Wellness

______ 1. Humanities

______ 2. Natural Science

______ 3. Social Science

______ 4. Fine & Performing Arts


C. Unity and Diversity: (January 17, 2001)

Flagged Courses: (February 14, 2001)

______ 1. Critical Analysis

______ 2. Science and Social Policy

______ 3. a. Global Perspectives

______ b. Multicultural Perspectives

______ 4. a. Contemporary Citizenship

______ b. Democratic Institutions

______ 1. Writing

___x___ 2. Oral

______ 3. a. Mathematics/ Statistics

_____ b. Critical Analysis



Oral communication courses in the University Studies program are devoted to teaching the knowledge, oral communication skills, and experience to enable them to become highly competent oral presenters by the time they graduate. These skills include the ability to do extemporaneous oral presentations according to the standards of their discipline, adapt their speaking to the field-specific audience, make use of research and professional findings, and to use appropriate format and documentation skills that are appropriate to the profession. The objective of these courses is to develop students’ abilities to effectively use the process of oral and related documentation skills. Disciplinary examples should be selected and can be provided to support the development of oral communication skills

Oral Presentation flag criteria


Capstone Experience in Role Synthesis

a. earn significant course credit through extemporaneous oral presentation

This assignment constitutes the largest portion of points for determining the course grade. The presentation is seen as an essential assignment in developing presentation skills for those entering professional practice. The course grade includes a possible total of 100 points out of the possible 160 points.

See course description,WSU baccalaureate Program Outcomes #3, course outcome #6, course requirements #2

b. understand the features and types of speaking in their disciplines

Through this presentation of the service project the student proves the ability to synthesize application of professional theory and role development at the end of the program curriculum. It is an example of the concept of communication in the professional role of teacher. Some aspects of the project may be aimed at training technological skills, teaching nursing interventions, and describing critical decision making skills.

See course description, course objective #2 & 3, Criteria for Capstone Project (present within a professional conference format), Student Performance Evaluation (subtopic: Communication, p 21 of syllabus)

c. adapt their speaking to field-specific audiences

Students do presentations to groups of practitioners in the agency where they have completed their clinical experiences. Presentations are then done for their peer groups and faculty.

See course description, course objective #2 & 3, Learning Plan (p. 2 course syllabus), Criteria for Capstone Project, Description of Capstone Service Project #2 & 3 (p. 4 of syllabus), Criteria for Reflection on Learning Paper, Responsibilities for Student #3 and responsibilities for faculty # 4 (p. 9 syllabus), Student Performance Evaluation

d. receive appropriate feedback from teachers and peers, including suggestions for improvement

During the semester students consult and receive feedback from the preceptor and faculty person on a regular basis through informal meeting times, at planned points in the term, and peer and faulty feedback is given at the time of the formal presentation. The feedback is given orally, in cumulative written notes, through evaluation of the required journal of events, and in formal summative evaluation forms. The student is thereby given the opportunity to learn to do the best presentation possible. The final evaluation is given to the student for future reference and for professional resume documentation.

See course outcome #6, Course Requirements #2, Criteria for Capstone Paper, Criteria for Capstone Service Project #3

e. make use of the technologies used for research and speaking in the field

Students work individually and in conjunction with preceptor and faculty to gather knowledge; be a consumer of research findings; and incorporate library resource knowledge from texts, professional journals and organizational resources and published tools . The Internet, professional audio-visual offerings, and recorded interviews with experts in the field are often incorporated in background information gathering. Various forms of technology are used for the presentations to professionals and peers, and include, but are not limited to computer Powerpoint presentations, video taping, created materials, documented search sources, and the like. Posters made with the latest in clip art and esthetic research findings are frequently available at the time of presentations and left with the clinical agency.

See WSU Baccalaureate Program Outcomes #3, Criteria for Capstone Project, Criteria for Reflection on Learning Paper, Purpose of the Capstone Experience (p.10 syllabus), Student Performance Evaluation (subsections of Researcher, Scholar, Communication, Critical Thinking, Accountability, Leader.)

f. learn the conventions of evidence, format, usage, and documentation in their field

Students are encouraged to use critical thinking skills with a focus on the professional standardized Nursing Process. They utilize a format of a logical presentation format from goal setting, project process steps, and evaluation of project outcomes. Students utilize the accepted American Psychiatric Association format in documentation of sources of information and tools. The student presentation is done using the conventional standards of demeanor, dress, and methods as defined by the Nursing profession. Evaluations from the process and presentation, along with the reflection paper, become part of the student portfolio required for graduation.

See Course Overview, Criteria of Capstone Project, Criteria for Reflection on Learning Project, Mission Statement (p. 8 syllabus), Purpose of the Capstone Experience (p. 10 syllabus), Student Performance Evaluation


.Submitted with this proposal is the N491 syllabus, which includes the course description, course objectives, unit objectives, teaching strategies, text, and evaluation/assignments.



Approval/Disapproval Recommendations


Department Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

Chairperson Signature_______________________ Date______


Dean's Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved ____* Date:______

Dean's Signature_______________________ Date______

*In the case of a Dean's recommendation to disapprove a proposal a written rationale for the recommendation to disapprove shall be provided to USS


USS Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

University Studies Director's Signature_______________________ Date______


A2C2 Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved_____ Date:______

A2C2 Chairperson Signature_______________________ Date______


Faculty Senate Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

FA President's Signature_______________________ Date______


Academic Vice President's Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

VP's Signature_______________________ Date______


President's Decision: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

President's Signature_______________________ Date______


Course Number and Title: N491 Capstone Experience in Role Synthesis

Placement of Course in Curriculum: Spring, Senior Year

Pre-requisites: Last term of senior year, N456, N466

Co-requisite: N486

Credit and time Allotment: 3 Semester Credits (96 hours, 80 in clinical site)

Students will spend a minimum of 80 hours in practicum experience with an assigned preceptor in a specific professional nursing role. The remaining 16 hours would be devoted to a developing a learning contract, negotiating and collaborating with preceptor, consultation with assigned faculty member, developing a service project and sharing your project and lived capstone experience with peers.

Course Overview

  1. General Purpose of Course: Intense site-based experience of student's choice designed to encapsulate the essence of baccalaureate professional role development.

This course meets the oral flag criteria for Winona State University, which are:

a. earn significant course credit through extemporaneous oral presentation

    1. understand the features and types of speaking in their disciplines
    2. adapt their speaking to field-specific audiences
    3. receive appropriate feedback from teachers and peers, including suggestions for improvement
    4. make use of the technologies used for research and speaking in the field
    5. leaner the conventions of evidence, format, usage, and documentation in their field

B. Curriculum concepts, subconcepts, roles, and/or theories are emphasized:

This synthesis course allows the student to expand their understanding of major concepts of nursing, change, caring, people, health and environment in a setting of their choice. All professional roles will be emphasized, although student focus will depend on their site.

Critical thinking, ethical decision-making will continue to be emphasized as students work with clients and within health care systems. Communication and accountability will be emphasized as students work with preceptors in clinical agencies and develop a project addressing a need within that agency.

This course synthesizes all previous courses and prerequisites. It includes application of theory and role development as a professional nurse. This course should lead the student to completion of the WSU Baccalaureate Program Outcomes:

1. Incorporate caring as an integral part of nursing in the human health experience.

  1. Apply theoretical and empirical knowledge from nursing and other disciplines to make nursing judgments and provide nursing care. Oral Flag criterion b
  2. Use effective communication, therapeutic nursing interventions, appropriate technological skills, and ethical decision-making in the care of individuals, families, or communities.

Oral Flag criteria a, b

4. Accept responsibility and accountability for own safe and ethical practice of professional nursing.

5. Collaborate with client and others in the health care delivery system to promote health.

6. Participate proactively in change related to health care needs in a complex global community.

7. Apply results of nursing research to improve nursing practice.

8. Practice nursing as a member of a professional discipline in an environment of change.


Course Outcomes: The student will:

1. Participate in selection of region, agency and area for capstone experience based on identified learning needs.

2. Participate in experience within a baccalaureate nursing role.

3. Perform nursing roles appropriate to the experience under direct supervision of service area preceptor.

4. Develop learning outcomes with faculty approval and preceptor input.

5. Collaborate/negotiate with preceptor for dates of experience and assignment.

  1. Develop clinical project for agency and present to peers in final seminar.

Oral Flag a

Course Outline:

1. Select site of Capstone Experience with assistance.

2. Collaborate with preceptor and faculty to establish learning outcomes for experience.

3. Complete a Service Project for the agency.

4. Presentation and sharing of experience/project with peers.

Learning Plan:

A. Strategies Used to meet Course Goals: Site-Based experience in specific area and with specific population of student's interest. Students will be assigned to a preceptor within the agency to complete the learning outcomes developed with faculty and preceptor. The focus of this hands-on experience is on a baccalaureate nursing role in agencies not limited to industry, homes, ambulatory care, community health agencies, hospitals and long term care facilities. Journalizing will encourage student reflection of learning throughout the experience. Students will share culminating projects with peers.

B. Course Requirements:

1. Develop written learning outcomes 20pts.

  1. Capstone experience/project presentation

Oral flag b,c,d,e,f 40pts.

3. Reflection paper 40pts.

Oral Flag a

4. Successfully complete capstone experience Pass/no credit

C. Evaluation Methods:

Grading Scale:

92-100 = A

83-91= B

74-82= C

65-73= D

<65 = E


A. Faculty Susan Ballard ST335 507-457-5137

Shirley Newberry ST323 507-457-5124

Norma Blankenfled EA257 507-285-7492

Kathy Orth EA218 507-285-7490

B. Designated Preceptor

  1. Required/Recommended Readings: Refer to syllabi for cores for readings and resources that compliment the chosen site-based experience


Criteria for Capstone Project

100 points

Within a professional conference format, you will present your capstone service experience and project with nursing students and faculty. Presentations will be 15 minutes in length and 5 minutes for questions/discussion.

Oral Flag criteria b, c, d, e, f


1. Describe briefly your capstone experience, professional nursing roles you participated in, site, and population as background to your project presentation. (20 pts.)

2. Explain your service project including: (50 pts.)

How you decided what the project would be.

Explanation of the benefits to the nurses/agency.

Your reflection on the meaning of this project to you.

3. In this nursing role: (20 pts.)

What works well in delivering nursing care?

What challenges/ barriers do you see today and speculate in the future?

4. Employ proper presenting style. (10pts)

--Presentation is clear, concise, and organized.

--Addresses questions as necessary.

--Demonstrates one creative teaching strategy during delivery.

--Respects time frame.

--Dresses appropriate for a conference presentation.






The Service Project for Capstone was developed as a way for WSU Students to "give back" to the agencies which so willingly open their institutions to facilitate your learning. The Service Project also fits with this course as a "synthesis" project reflecting many roles of the professional nurse. In the past these projects have been extremely well received by the agencies.

The following are guidelines for creation of your project:

1. You should work with your preceptor to assess the needs of the service agency you are associated with.

  1. Develop a project that in some way benefits the agency. The focus of this project could be the nurses and/or clients. Examples of some service projects from the past include, but are not limited to: poster presentations, development of informational brochures, a resource manual on a topic (one was done on cultural diversity), class presentations for staff or clients. Be creative.
  2. Oral Flag criteria b, c

  3. Complete the presentation.

Oral Flag criterion c

4. Evaluate your service project-this could be articulated as part of your Capstone Presentation.

This project should be approved by your Capstone Instructor prior to development. Additionally, your Capstone Instructor should be notified in a timely manner as to the date and time of the presentation, if appropriate.

See the "Criteria for Capstone Presentation" found on page 3 of your syllabus for information on how this project fits with your presentation.




40 points

A 3-5 page typed paper will be submitted to your assigned nursing faculty based on daily journalizing during your capstone experience, and reflection on learning or growth during this synthesis experience. This paper shall include two parts.

Oral Flag criteria c, e


1. Evaluate the method and degree to which you were able to meet your established learning outcomes. (15pts)

2. From reflective journalizing of your experience, describe a critical incident or student learning experience that stands out in your mind as significant in your professional development. Explain why this incident/learning stands out and possible meaning it has for you as you complete the WSU nursing program. The following questions may be helpful: (20pts)

When did you feel most engaged in this experience? Can you describe it?

When did you feel most distracted/disengaged from learning? Can you describe it?

What meaning might this have for you? Did you experience an "aha"?

What discoveries did you make about yourself professionally and personally?

What discoveries did you make about your new profession of nursing? Is it a fit for you?


Style, grammar, conciseness, clarity of expression and thought. (5pts)