From mountaintop to corporate ladder - what new professionals really really want in a capstone experience!

Erica French*, Janis Bailey, Elizabeth van Acker, Leigh Wood

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Capstone subjects are increasingly used in Universities worldwide to complete the undergraduate program experience and to transition graduates into the workplace. As such, capstones fulfil a large role consolidating one experience and traversing the gap to another. Yet, little is known or understood about their design, their implementation or evaluation. In this study we investigate the final-year experience from the student’s perspective. We surveyed graduates from five Business Schools in Australia to identify perceptions of their final-year experience. Findings indicate that the transition experience of the student to professional is unique. In their liminal or intermediate state between student and professional they recognise the value of process skills, in particular the development of generic business skills related to application and the importance of opportunities for experiencing the application of theory in practice. The findings add a new understanding to the current literature which has not previously acknowledged the insight of the transitioning professional.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)767-782
Number of pages16
JournalTeaching in Higher Education
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 17 Nov 2015


  • capstone courses
  • assuring learning
  • transition to work


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