A doctor of nursing degree is an incredible goal and it is great to see many nurses go for this goal. One of the most challenging parts of completing this degree is doing a capstone project. When you are deciding on a topic, you need to make sure that you are going passionate about it. The project takes a long time to complete. You want to be able to cover the entire project, without getting burned out.
When you are trying to work full-time and get your capstone project done, it takes a lot out of you. There is no doubt that DNP capstone projects are complicated, but there are ways to approach it. Once you find your flow, it becomes much easier to manage. These are some of the best tips to apply when you are working on that DNP capstone project.
When you are selecting your topic, you need to make sure that it is a solid problem faced in nursing. You are then going to have to come up with ideas on solving it. The problem you are solving should be something close to your heart, but also one you know enough about.
You need enough theoretical evidence of the problem you are attempting to solve. This project is not based on your personal opinion, but rather on facts. You want to make sure that there is enough out there to prove your solutions. Look at a few DNP project ideas before you make your final decision.
There need to be at least 10 books written on the subject. You want to stay away from shortened versions or summaries. This is an intensive research project and your sources need to be credible. Reading the opinion of experts can give you guidance. These books will either prove what you are stating as possible or not.
You might want to start taking down notes as soon as your research starts. There is so much reading that goes into this project. You cannot remember it all, even if you tried. Make sure your notes are organized. There needs to be a reference back to your literature, so these notes need to cover a lot.
It seems easy to plan a project of this magnitude, but it is not. You need to write everything down and follow your plan. Once you start deviating from your plan that is when things get a little shaky. Understand who you need to speak to, what you need to read and how much you need to spend.
There are a lot of DNP capstone project examples online. You can use this as inspiration and compare it to what you have so far. It is also a great place to find capstone nursing ideas. I am sure you know that these examples are not to be copied, but only used for inspiration and structure.
When you are evaluating your project, be clear about the impact this theory could have. You need to break down the information you presented and then see how it would change the nursing field.
Start thinking about how you want to present your results early on. This way, you can start inviting the individuals you want there. You also want to figure out if this will be done as a presentation or submitted in book form. There are a lot more creative, yet professional ways to present your findings.
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The beginning of your project should have the conclusion in mind. This will give you a clear guide of where you need to go with your project. When you decide on the ending first, you can steer your research in a certain direction. As with any writing, you want to end strong. The conclusion is the last section of your project and it should be memorable.
Do not forget to reference your work and be sure to use the correct layout. It is very easy to lose marks at this point. A lot of hard work has gone into the project and this is a critical part. Know what the format for your reference list should be. It would either be APA, MLA or Turabian, depending on your specific requirements.
Eva Read is a professional writer and a content manager. She find inspiration in music, yoga and books. Her life motto is “Opportunities don’t happen. You create them.”