Journal for Language Teaching

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Creative capstone computer projects for post-graduate students of English

Marieken Swart


The capstone forms an integral part of outcome-based education. Based on a concept from early Roman building techniques, a capstone experience aims to bring a period of study to meaningful and practical fruition. With this in mind, the English Department at the University of Stellenbosch has designed a module in its Honours course that allows post-graduate students the opportunity to develop additional skills in the design and development of multimedia projects that effectively combine the knowledge they have gained during the course of their English studies with state of the art technological innovations in education. This paper explores the nature of the capstone experience and discusses the contribution it makes to the education and skills development of post-graduate students. It describes the main assignment of the module “Learning and Teaching through Multimedia”, shows that it demands carefully demarcated academic research, the ability to structure and present knowledge in an interactive multimedia environment and a sensitive understanding of both the learning and teaching process. As such, the assignment is a practical demonstration of skill and knowledge in an important, authentic context. The article is illustrated by extracts from multimedia projects completed by post-graduate students.

Keywords: Capstone; Multimedia projects; English language; English literature; Postgraduate

(J Language Teaching: 2003 37(1): 35-45)
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