Capstone Requirement

The Capstone Project is the culminating academic experience for all Honors College Scholars.

Designed to reflect a student’s deep engagement with a specific discipline, question, or problem, the Capstone Project involves a substantial, sustained, and original writing, research, or performance requirement leading to at least 6 credits. The Capstone must include a bibliography of relevant scholarly literature, receive approval from the Honors College, and be supervised by an approved faculty advisor. To reflect the diversity of experiences available through the Honors College and to reflect the wide range of disciplinary specializations within the participating schools, there are six options for Capstone Projects available to Honors College students. The Capstone Project is a culminating project spanning two consecutive semesters (3 credits each semester) that generally occurs in the fourth year.

Note: The Capstone Proposal is due by April 1 of a student's junior year (beginning with Class of 2024). Students who plan to graduate one semester early must submit a Capstone Proposal Form by November 1 in the academic year prior to the year of graduation.

Please see table below for the upcoming deadlines:


Graduation Date

Capstone Proposal Due Date

August 2024*

Nov 1, 2023

January 2025

Nov 1, 2023

May 2025

Apr 1, 2024

* Must get prior approval to use SU as a Capstone term.

Six Options for Capstone Projects

Option 1: Departmental Honors

Students may choose to fulfill their capstone requirement by completing a senior honors thesis or project within their major-granting department or school. The Departmental Honors option must be supervised by a faculty advisor in the student’s major department and fulfill the individual department’s requirements for an honors thesis. Information on the available departmental majors through which a supervised thesis may be available can be found at Some of these departmental options, such as Mathematics, Finance, and Computer Science, may require a Scholarly Report. Students can contact their Honors College advisor for more information on the Departmental Honors option.

Any RBS student wishing to complete their capstone through departmental honors must complete both the HC proposal form AND the RBS proposal form which can be retrieved through Dean Schnatter. Capstone status will remain as "pending" until a copy of the signed RBS form is received and submitted to the HC.

Option 2: School Based Honors Projects

Honors College students enrolled in schools with requirements for senior projects or experiences, such as the School of Engineering Senior Design Project or the Mason Gross School of the Arts Student Performance, must also complete a Scholarly Report.*School of Engineering students must register for one credit HC Interdisciplinary Thesis Course in their final semester.

Option 3: Honors College Interdisciplinary Thesis Projects

The Interdisciplinary Honors Thesis is a two-semester independent research project that culminates in a written thesis and an oral defense before a faculty committee. The Interdisciplinary Honors Thesis option is best for students who have an interest in a topic that spans more than one academic discipline or who are in a major that does not have a departmental honors program. Students may also choose to complete a research project outside of their major. In this case, the student must use the Interdisciplinary Honors Thesis option and will be provided credits through the Honors College. The Interdisciplinary Honors Thesis is a minimum of 6-credits and typically takes the form of a thesis.

 *Note: As per University policy, Students taking this option will not receive a final letter grade for their capstone until the conclusion of the capstone. Students will receive an "H" grade at the conclusion of their first capstone course that will be updated with a letter grade after the completion of their written thesis and the oral defense before a faculty committee.

Option 4: Graduate Study

Undergraduate students can fulfill their capstone requirement by enrolling in two or more sequential or related graduate-level courses in the same department or program. Enrolling in graduate courses requires prior permission of the instructor and approval of the department's graduate director as well as approval from the Honors College's Academic Dean. Students in the School of Arts and Sciences who are interested in completing graduate courses for Capstone credit must submit the Graduate Request Form to the School of Arts and Sciences Office of Academic Services. Students enrolled in the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences must visit that school's Academic Services Office to request permission to enroll in graduate courses. Engineering students in good academic standing must request permission to enroll in graduate courses through the Graduate Program Director. Mason Gross School of the Arts students must contact their Honors College Dean and the Mason Gross Office of Academic Services for approval. Students using this option can put HC Advising ( as their capstone advisor. All students must complete a Scholarly Report in addition to the graduate coursework. RBS students: This option is very limited for RBS majors you can review potential courses here.

Please NOTE: online, asynchronous courses cannot be used for Capstone completion. A student may use one online, synchronous course, but not two.

Option 5: Graduate Program

Students who enroll in a Rutgers program that combines undergraduate and graduate coursework and culminates in multiple and distinct degrees can complete their Capstone by advancing into full-time graduate study. Programs offered through the Graduate School of Education and the seven-year BA/MD, among others, can be used for this option. Students using this option can put HC Advising ( as their capstone advisor. The PharmD program on its own does not fulfill this option. Coursework must be taken in consecutive semesters. This option requires a Scholarly Report.

Option 6: Experiential Capstone

Students can fulfill their Capstone requirement by completing an approved two-semester professional, certificate, or credit-bearing service learning experience, field placement, or internship under the supervision of a sponsoring department or academic unit. Only coursework completed through approved programs run by academic departments and university centers, bureaus, and institutes will be recognized. All students using this option should list HC Advising as their Capstone Advisor. This work must be a culminating experience and the student must earn at least 6-credits over two consecutive semesters.




If you have any questions regarding the capstone requirement, please email Honors College Advising.