If you are planning for getting admission in a doctorate program, you must know not all PhD students have to write a dissertation to earn a degree. If you are the kind of person who does not want to pursue a degree which cannot be completed without writing a dissertation, you must get admission to a professional doctorate degree. In a professional doctorate degree program, you can earn a degree by completing a doctoral capstone. Dissertation and doctoral capstone have some similarities as well as differences. Similarities lie in the extensive research process and requirement of essential skills like critical thinking, writing or reasoning. This article will primarily focus on the difference between a dissertation and doctoral capstone.
A capstone is a report or a research study that doctorate students produce at the end of the program. It is an intended piece of writing that aims to deliver a solution to a problem in a natural setting. Doctorate capstone usually refers to research projects sponsored by some industry and some funding bodies. It requires the execution of a project in which the final product is deliverable to an organisation. To write it, you can use a number of formats. Usually, the exact format is suggested by the funding body or organisation.
A doctorate dissertation is a long piece of academic writing assignment that acts like a written proof of your doctorate research. It is up to you whether you want to write it at the start or end of a PhD research work. Moreover, you can also write it as you are conducting research. Typically, a doctorate dissertation is about 60,000 to 80,000 words that can be above 100 pages. Dissertation writing is a lengthy process than doctorate capstone writing, but the former can be made easier by seeking help from a PhD dissertation writing service.
At the doctorate level, a student should conduct original and unique work. Likewise, a dissertation must also report something new that has not been published previously. A doctorate dissertation has many overlapping things with the master’s and bachelor’s thesis. In simple words, you must have to select a good topic for the dissertation, describe the problem statement, give background, compile literature, collect data, observe patterns by analysis, and draw inferences. However, the factors that need extra attention in doctorate dissertation include extensive research, more elaboration, detailed discussion, better analysis, strong evidence, logical reasoning, and more generalized research.
Differences Between A Dissertation And Doctoral Capstone:
The most prominent difference between a dissertation and doctoral capstone is the type of audience they aim to address. Basically, dissertation or thesis writing is for an academic audience. The academic audience can be anyone who is connected with the research writing and publication process, such as professional and technical communication or the writing department. However, capstone projects are meant to address the two types of audiences.
The first type of audience of a capstone project is the organisation, client, or agency that sponsored you to conduct a particular task in your doctorate studies. The second will be the project evaluation committee that asked you to show your progress on a particular project via writing a report. Other than the audience, there are also clear differences between a dissertation and doctoral capstone based on structure, focus, and time frame. Let us discuss them as well:
Dissertation and doctoral capstone have a clear-cut difference in their main focus. The focus of a dissertation is to give original input to a particular body of literature. It mostly aims to find and bridge the literature gap. In contrast, the prime focus of a doctorate capstone is to extend the research to provide a solution to a real word problem.
As far as the suggested time to complete a dissertation and doctoral capstone are concerned, there is also a prominent difference between the two. For completing a dissertation, you must have to conduct thorough research for at least two years, while for writing a doctoral capstone you need to follow the project’s protocols that can be completed even within six months.
A dissertation comprises five main chapters, namely, introduction, literature review, methodology, results, and discussion or conclusion. However, the structure of the doctoral capstone must resemble the structure of a report containing information about the deliverables and methods applied to gain results.
After all, is said and done, we can conclude the discussion by saying that both dissertation and doctoral capstone are two different things. Both have a different structure, audience, suggested time, and main focus. After knowing all the possible differences between dissertation and doctoral capstone, hopefully, you might have decided what type of doctorate degree program, professional degree program or research-oriented degree program will be more suitable for you.