Rumor of More Capstones at TESC

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by sanantone, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    There is a rumor going around among the staff at TESC that there could be capstone requirements coming to associate's programs. The last time this happened, TESC added capstone requirements to all of its BA programs a few months later for the new academic year. So, now, TESC has a capstone or current trends and applications (pretty much a capstone) for almost all of its bachelor's programs. There are only a couple of BS programs without capstones and the BSBA is the only program with a capstone that can be transferred in or tested out of. Some people might see value in a capstone at the associate's level, but I don't. If you think the capstone should be optional, please sign this petition. Thank you!
  2. AV8R

    AV8R Active Member

    It wouldn't surprise me at all if they did at a capstone requirement to their associate's programs. Excelsior and Charter Oak already have this requirement. TESC is the holdout.
  3. pfelectronicstech

    pfelectronicstech New Member

    Not to sound ignorant, but I am new to the whole college thing, what exactly is a "Capstone"? I have see this in programs I have checked out, but did not look into what they actually were.
  4. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    A capstone is supposed to be the last course (but it doesn't have to be) that culminates your whole education experience. At TESC for the bachelor's programs, you normally need to write a 20+ page paper or complete a major project. If you take the online instead of guided study course, you also have to participate in 6 discussion assignments. What's so annoying about it is that TESC only offers 12-week courses and its an additional $663 for non-residents unless you choose the Comprehensive Tuition Plan. With the exception of the BSBA, the capstone has to be taken at TESC and you can't test out of it. Maybe I'm just spoiled since I graduated from TESC before the capstone requirement.
  5. pfelectronicstech

    pfelectronicstech New Member

    It doesn't sound necessary at all to me. Did you pass all your proctored exams through the program, then you learned the material, I don't see the need for this, and it sounds annoying. 20 plus pages is insanity in my opinion.
  6. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    I think it's reasonable for the bachelor's programs in preparation for graduate school, but it should still be optional like it used to be. Some people don't care to go to graduate school and will never have to write large papers for their jobs. I thought about going back to TESC for a second bachelor's, but I've had enough of writing in my graduate program. I also thought about another associate's to supplement a teacher's certification for science since my background is in the social sciences, but I'll just go with a community college if TESC adds the capstone requirement.
  7. SteveFoerster

    SteveFoerster Resident Gadfly Staff Member

    Honestly? Someone who's in the final part of earning a Bachelor's degree really ought to be able to write a twenty double-spaced page paper without too much ado, especially when the topic of that paper is one's own education.

    I guess I'm more neutral about one for an Associate's degree, but even then one should be able to do it.
  8. ryoder

    ryoder New Member

    I finished the BA Nat Sci/Math and the BSBA CIS with on capstone, save the Business Policy TECEP for the BSBA. However, I did take 9 credits at TESC in the nat sci degree and I did enjoy my time in those courses. I felt more connected to the institution and would encourage you to take a class at TESC in addition to the testing out options. You just might like it.
  9. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    Not for people with ADHD, but I'm more annoyed with the time and cost it would take to complete the capstone on top of the nearly $3,000 enrollment fee.

    I already know I wouldn't. I've already written hundreds of pages for my graduate program. I've had enough. I'm only going to start a PhD program if I can get full funding and quit my job. For me, writing papers is akin to torture, especially when I have to juggle a full-time job.
  10. cookderosa

    cookderosa Resident Chef

    Ok, don't throw tomatoes.....

    I think this might be a valid addition, though I don't think it should be a "capstone" in a 400-level sense. There should be some type of 200 level exit.

    My complaint about fully testing out, is that there is no writing. A 5-paragraph essay for the English Comp CLEP is currently the only writing that has to be done- at all. Do I think you should be able to test out of a degree? Mostly, yes. I do think that when you allow the option of demonstrating knowledge for what you already know (no matter how or where you learned it) there isn't a full demonstration without a written component. Frankly, comparing a tested vs non-tested degree boils down only to one real difference: academic writing experience.

    However, I'm not naive, no-one is really honing their writing skills cranking out 4 papers in one class and calling it done...and TESC's motives are likely financial with a dash of "image management."
  11. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    It might have to do with accreditation too, but the truth is that a very small minority of TESC's students completely test out of their degrees.
  12. RugbyMan187

    RugbyMan187 New Member

    I agree with the extra "capstone" to it's programs. They should do it for all programs and certificates. I'm a TESC alumini, go TESC!! :]
  13. Shawn Ambrose

    Shawn Ambrose New Member

    While I don't have insider knowledge for TESC, my guess is that TESC considering a capstone for the AA/AS is for assessment purposes, both at the General Education level and the Program (Major) level. And yes, this is an accreditation requirement.
  14. Ian Anderson

    Ian Anderson Active Member

    I doubt you will have to write 20 pages for an associate capstone.

    The Excelsior capstone is done through a guided course where several inputs are required during the course with each input being scored and the total score receives an appropriate grade. I'm not sure how the TESC capstone course is taught.

    If you are smart enough to enroll in a degree program then I'm sure you will earn an acceptable grade.
  15. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley Well-Known Member

    For the BSBA, TESC allows the TECEP in Strategic Management, a proctored exam with MCQ, short answer, and essay components, to serve as the capstone. They could do surely something similar for the associate's (but they're not, so far)…
  16. Ian Anderson

    Ian Anderson Active Member

    I looked up the TESC AA and AAS degree requirements and currently a capstone is only required for one of the TESC AA degrees (the one in human services)

    My understanding is that you follow the degree requirements in place at the date of your enrollment (check the TESC catalog to be sure).

    I might add that you need to review the TESC catalog to make sure you know and comply with all the college requirements as well as the degree requirements..
  17. sanantone

    sanantone Well-Known Member

    The liberal arts capstone has been available as an option for awhile. If people really wanted to take it, all they had to do was sign up for it. I'm sure anyone could sign up for current trends and applications too.
    It's just a rumor. If they're going to make the change, it'll probably be in July for the next academic year. That's what they did last year when they made the liberal arts capstone a requirement for all of the BA programs.

    I really don't see why anyone needs to spend 3 months writing a research paper. I've written several 12+ page papers in one day. I see this as a waste of time and kind of weird that all of the BA majors take the same course together. It makes me wonder what they write about on the discussion boards.
  18. faero13

    faero13 Member

    I'm not sure I understand what the problem is. Are we afraid of a little extra work?
  19. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley Well-Known Member

    This isn't adding 3 sh of work to a degree, it's substituting 3 sh that could have been met through a (lower-cost) source with 3 sh that has to be taken in a new online course from TESC, at TESC's full tuition cost. This will be $663 (out-of-state), on top of over three thousand dollars in fees (out-of-state) just for enrolling at TESC.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 7, 2013
  20. StefanM

    StefanM New Member

    This point is valid, but the issue is also important to consider from an academic standpoint. A capstone course is a way for TESC to have some kind of universal requirement that all students in a program complete, thereby permitting them to justify in some fashion that the degree has a distinctive TESC flavor.

    Although I have recommended programs at TESC, COSC, and Excelsior and will continue to do so, I find the relative lack of residency a bit odd. The capstone mitigates this somewhat, even if it does impose some additional costs.

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