Title: Undergraduate capstone projects in information technology course: bridging the gap between theory and practical skills
Authors: Mohammad Noman; Mohd Khairudin Kasiran
Addresses: Wenzhou-Kean University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province, 325015, China ' School of Computing, College of Arts and Sciences, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Sintok, Kedah, Malaysia
Abstract: This study was conducted in the School of Computing at a public university in Malaysia to identify the current issues in the existing undergraduate capstone project and to identify ways to improve the existing capstone project framework to make it more effective. Data was collected through in-depth, semi-structured interviews of faculty members and students who had recently completed the capstone project and focus group discussions. The findings reveal issues that could be categorised into: 1) lack of orientation; 2) role ambiguity between the supervisor and the lecturer; 3) misalignment between technical skills, project requirement, and support; 4) students' prior educational background. Formal orientation, clear role allotment for lecturers and supervisors, more projects for each major subject, project-based experiences during courses, and inculcation of soft skills among students were some of the suggestions identified through data. The implications for various stakeholders and the limitations of the study have been discussed.
Keywords: capstone; project-based learning; computer education; Malaysia; undergraduate education.
International Journal of Innovation and Learning, 2023 Vol.33 No.2, pp.161 - 176
Received: 29 Nov 2021
Accepted: 20 Jan 2022
Published online: 08 Feb 2023 *