PS498 Sr. Capstone in Psychology

for F2T 2012

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Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.


PS 498 Sr. Capstone in Psychology


F2T 2012 DL


White, Norma A.


Adjunct Professor


MA Counseling

Office Location


Office Hours

varies, I will be in the online classroom most days; and will return all e-mails within 24-48 hours

Daytime Phone



Semester Dates

F2T 2012

Class Days


Class Time



PS 101 and Senior Standing

Credit Hours


There is no textbook for this course. There will be weekly reading assignments available each week that will take the place of a textbook.

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:
APA style (free) tutorial:

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information
Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Please contact your Campus Center for advising or enrollment adjustment information.
Online Classroom Technical Support - For technical assistance with the Online classroom, email or call the helpdesk at 866-301-PARK (7275). To see the technical requirements for Online courses, please visit the website, and click on the "Technical Requirements" link, and click on "BROWSER Test" to see if your system is ready.
FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.

Course Description:
PS 498 Senior Capstone in Psychology: This course serves as a senior capstone experience for students in their senior year. This course will include a comprehensive examination, a portfolio, and a major paper reflecting on the students portfolio. There will also be lectures reviewing all issues designed in the Psychology Program Competencies. 2:0:2 Prerequisite: PS 101 and senior standing.

Educational Philosophy:
[Each instructor will insert his/her own philosophy]

Class Assessment:

  • Weekly Quiz. There will be weekly quizzes administered throughout the semester. Each quiz will made up of three types of questions: Multiple choice vocabulary, multiple choice content, and essay questions about the reading assignment for each week. Each of the 8 quizzes will be worth up to 15 points.

  • COEX. As described in the course description and Undergraduate Catalog, the comprehensive exit exam is required for all students who enroll in PS/SO 498. The exam consists of 100 randomly selected items covering content learned throughout the courses you have completed, and it is worth 25% of the course grade. The exam can be taken up to 3 separate times, in which the highest score is used to determine the points earned.  The highest COEX score will correspond to the percentage of the 360 points earned. For example, a score of 71 on the COEX will result in a student earning 256 out of the 360 points (i.e., 255.6; .5 or higher rounded up and .4 or lower rounded down).

  • Capstone Survey online: As part of the department’s efforts to measure students’ learning within the three majors, students will complete the Capstone Survey for their respective major. There are separate web links for each degree program: Psychology, Sociology, and Social Psychology; worth 15 points.

  • Final. A Final will be administered covering the readings from the entire semester (comprehensive). The questions will be made up of multiple choice vocabulary, multiple choice content, and essay questions. The final will be worth up to 200 points.

  • Research Discussion (Discussion Thread). Each week a copy of a research article will be provided in a PDF or HTML format. All postings are due by midnight Sunday of each week.

    Each student will be required to identify hypothesis, independent variable, dependent variable, design, results, and conclusions.

    Each student will need to identify threats to internal and social validity.

    Each student will be required to identify a related lay media source that has been published in the last 2 months (e.g., newscast, newspaper article, or magazine article) and discuss how one informs the other.

    Each student will reply to one classmate in the discussion thread. This information may appear on the student’s weekly quiz.


Points Possible

Identify Hypothesis


Identify Independent Variable


Identify Dependent Variable


Identify Research Design


Identify Results


Identify Conclusions


Describe Internal Validity


Describe Social Validity


Lay Media Source (Discuss how the research article adds information to the media source or corrects information. Discuss how the media source adds social validity to the research article. The media source must be published in the last 2 months. It must be a newscast, newspaper article, or magazine article.)


Reply to a Classmate in Discussion Thread (The reply must be meaningful and show critical thinking. “Good Job” and “I agree” do not count.)




  • Current Events(Discussion Thread). Some readings for each week will be identified and its main points will be summarized.

    Each student will provide a different current event report from the other students. It is advised that students review the discussion thread before they make their choice of current event to avoid duplication.

    Each student will identify a media report made within the last 2 months of any kind that relates to the main points that have been summarized.

    Each student will provide the content of the media report and where it is located, discuss how it relates to main points of the reading, and identify the strengths and weaknesses of the content.

    Each student will reply to two classmates in a meaningful way.

    The assignments for the discussion are to be posted by midnight Thursday and the responses to classmates' postings are due by midnight Sunday of each week.


Points Possible

Summarize Media Report


Provide Media Report Location


Discuss How Report Relates to the Identified Reading


1st Reply to a Classmate


2nd Reply to a Classmate




  • Career Path Professional Timeline: Each student will submit their Career Path Professional Timeline to the assigned discussion thread.

    Each student will respond to two other student’s entries by asking relevant questions about each student’s Career Path Professional Timeline. 

    The assignments for the discussion are to be posted by midnight Thursday and the responses to classmates' postings are due by midnight Sunday of each week.


Points Possible

Submit Career Path Professional Timeline


1st Reply to a Classmate


2nd Reply to a Classmate




  • Resume: Each student will submit their resume to the assigned discussion thread.

    Each student will respond to two other student’s entries by asking relevant questions about each student’s resume.

    The assignments for the discussion are to be posted by midnight Thursday and the responses to classmates' postings are due by midnight Sunday of each week.


Points Possible

Submit Resume


1st Reply to a Classmate


2nd Reply to a Classmate




  •  Reflection Paper (Core Assessment): The reflection paper will contain three sections.

First the student will develop a Career Path Professional Timeline that demonstrates any past professional activity and future professional goals with dates. This timeline will include any employment, all educational experiences, certification, and licensure.

For the second section of this paper each student will develop a resume that reflects their most current aspirations. This could include graduate school, possible employment, or possible training programs.

The final part of this paper will be a reflection section. Each student will review the content and activities found in their core classes. They will then explain how the core competencies for their degree program have been addressed. They will then explain how this information will influence their careers.

This paper will need to be written in APA style and will need at least 7 references from professional journals. Other references can be obtained from the internet or other means. This paper will be worth up to 300 points.

Online APA tutorial:

It is due by midnight Sunday of Week 7 and should be turned in using the Dropbox.


Points Possible

Up-to-Date Career Path Professional Timeline

50 (Awarded in Discussion Thread)

Up-to-Date Resume

50 (Awarded in Discussion Thread)

Reflection of Core Classes and Program Competencies





 GRADING PLAN: Course grades are determined on the following bases.


Weekly Points

Total Points

Weekly Quizzes

15 Points

120 Points


200 Points

200 Points

Research Discussion

30 Points

240 Points

Current Events Discussion

25 Points

200 Points

COEX (Exit Exam)

360 points

360 Points 

Capstone Survey

15 points

15 Points

CA = (Timeline + Resume + Reflection) = 300 Points

Reflection Paper (Core Assessment)

200 Points

200 Points

Timeline and Discussion

50 Points

50 Points

Resume and Discussion

50 Points

50 Points








1291 - 1435

90 -100%


1148 - 1290

80 - 89.9%


1004 - 1147

70 - 79.9%


861 - 1003

60 - 69.9%


0 - 860

00 - 59.9%

Late Submission of Course Materials:
[Each instructor must insert his/her late policy; even if that policy does not accept late work.]

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

[Each instructor must insert his/her classroom/online environment conduct codes.]
·        Online - Etiquette/Courtesy: Online communications need to be composed with fairness, honesty, and tact. Spelling and grammar are very important in an online class. What you put into an online course reflects on your level of professionalism. It is important not to take disagreement personally. Responses to different ideas and observations need to be objective. Being objective means maintaining boundaries and not making personal attacks on the ability of others or making statements that have the potential to be taken personally. An important part of online learning is discussion. Differences in thinking are good because our knowledge is broadened. Because we have differences, we will have conflict. The important thing is to handle conflict in a way that does not create defensiveness which does not promote learning. Here is an online reference that discusses online netiquette

·        E-mail Procedures: General e-mail: When sending an e-mail, you must identify yourself by:



Purpose of the email

Your full name 

It is required that you use Pirate Mail for your online class. All information - problems with assignments, concerns, etc. - pertaining to the class will be sent to you through Pirate Mail. I will check my e-mail frequently and will respond to course related questions within 24-48 hours unless I have notified you that I will be unavailable. All e-mail sent to me needs to be copy/pasted. No attachments will be accepted due to the risk of viruses.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Weekly Schedule

Week 1 


  • Directed Readings: Psychology is Alive/Falsifiability


  • Quiz 1 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 1 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 1 (25 pts)

Week 2


  • Directed Readings: Operationalism & Essentialism


  • Quiz 2 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 2 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 2 (25 pts)
  • Up-to-Date Career Path Professional Timeline (50 pts)

Week 3


  • Directed Readings: Testimonials & Case Study Evidence/Correlation & Causation


  • Quiz 3 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 3 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 3 (25 pts)
  • COEX (attempt 1)

Week 4


  • Directed Readings: Getting Things Under Control/Artificiality


  • Quiz 4 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 4 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 4 (25 pts)
  • Up-to-Date Resume (50 pts)
  • COEX (attempt 2)

Week 5


  • Directed Readings: Converging Evidence


  • Quiz 5 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 5 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 5 (25 pts)
  • COEX (attempt 3)

Week 6


  • Directed Readings: Multiple Causation/Probabilistic Reasoning


  • Capstone Survey (15 pts)
  • Quiz 6 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 6 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 6 (25 pts)
  • COEX (highest score; 360 pts)

Week 7


  • Directed Readings: The Role of Chance


  • Quiz 7 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 7 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 7 (25 pts)
  • Reflection Paper (200 pts) (This Core Assessment should include the Career Timeline-50 Points +  Resume-50 Points + Reflection Paper-200 Points which equals 300 Points)

Week 8


  • Directed Readings: Psychology’s Image


  • Quiz 8 (15 pts)
  • Research Discussion 8 (30 pts)
  • Current Events 8 (25 pts)
  • Final (200 pts)

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty ( or Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95-96

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: Students must participate in an academically related activity on a weekly basis in order to be marked present in an online class. Examples of academically-related activities include but are not limited to: contributing to an online discussion, completing a quiz or exam, completing an assignment, initiating contact with a faculty member to ask a course related question, or using any of the learning management system tools.

Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 98

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .

Additional Information:
If an instructor provides extra credit opportunities, then these point values will NOT exceed 5% of the total points in the course.


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Last Updated:9/22/2012 3:16:42 PM