Human Services (HSRV) 489

Capstone: A Synthesis of Program Learning Outcomes (Revision 1)

HSRV 489 course cover image

Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Sciences

Prerequisite: All other courses in the HSRV major degree program are completed.**
* Professor approval is required.
** A maximum of three other 3-credit options/elective courses may be taken concurrently with HSRV 489 as the final courses to complete the degree (12 credits in total). HSRV major "required" courses may not be taken concurrently with HSRV 489.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Human Services home page

HSRV 489 is not available for Challenge.

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A capstone course is the culminating event of a course of study, usually taken at the end of a program. It provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate all that has been learned in the program.

Capstone experiences are superior examples of engagement through the integration of learning, knowledge, and application.

Capstone courses promote:

  • Coherence among a variety of course materials
  • Integration and connection between electives, options, and majors
  • Synthesis of thought
  • Development of organizational skills and critical thinking
  • Integration of personal reflection and experiences into the curriculum
  • Preparation for future study
  • Effective planning strategies for life, work, and study

Because this course is intended to demonstrate all of the learning outcomes in the Human Services major, professor approval will only be given when the student has completed all other courses, or if the course is taken concurrently with no more than three other final courses to complete their degree. HSRV 489 is the final course in the student's program.


The 5 steps below comprise the HSRV 489 capstone.

Step 1 Getting Started
You will first skim through the materials and then arrange a learning contract with your tutor. You will make decisions about how you will put your material together by strategizing your approach to the development of your capstone project.

Step 2 Foundations: Identifying relevant program outcomes
Next you will revisit the program's learning outcomes, and select several of them for further use.

Step 3 Making Meaning of Chosen Program Outcomes
You will then apply personal reflection and critical thinking to the relation between the program's expectations as derived from its program learning outcomes and your individualized learning.

Step 4 Synthesis and Integration of Individualized Learning
This step consolidates your individualized learning, integrating and synthesizing it into a final form.

Step 5 Communication of the Synthesis
The capstone learning process culminates in a communication of what has been learned.


To receive credit for HSRV 489, you must complete four graded assignments and achieve an overall course composite grade of D (50 percent) or higher. The weightings for each assignment are as follows.

Assignment 1 Assignment 2 Assignment 3 Assignment 4 Total
30% 20% 20% 30% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials

All course materials will be accessed online.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 1, June 13, 2013.