Graduating Papers

M.Ed. Graduating Papers (optional)

(required for “Capstone Experience”)

Masters in Education Graduating Paper Guidelines

Students who choose to do a graduating paper are required to present a written report of substantial examination of a topic relevant to their program. Its scope should be roughly equivalent to the amount of work produced for most 500-level 3-credit courses in the Department, and will be proportionately less than that of the nine-credit M.A. Thesis. Appropriate topics can be drawn from any aspect of the student’s graduate program or professional experience and plans, and will tend to be oriented to problems and issues of professional practice in Language & Literacy Education. Topics need not be original contributions to knowledge, but can, for example, be the application of knowledge to the field, development of instructional practices or resources, evaluations of practices or resources, critical essays, critical analyses of problems or issues, policy analysis or development, surveys, creative works, documentary work, and other types of projects negotiated with the supervisory committee. In all cases, the scope of the Graduating Paper need not include all of the requirements of the social science research report as described in standard guidebooks to educational research. The Graduating Paper would not be ordinarily as comprehensively conceptualized as the M.A. Thesis. Some, but not all of the regularly accepted requirements of methodological rigour will apply equally to the Graduating Paper, because of its limited scope and distinct aims.

The student’s supervisor will discuss the criteria to be employed when judging the acceptability of any Graduating Paper; those criteria will be appropriate to the specific nature and aims of the exercise undertaken.

The format of the Graduating Paper is normally that of a written report. In certain cases, other formats and media will be more appropriate, and these matters will be negotiated as part of the topic approval process.


  1. The Graduating Paper project may be commenced prior to the conclusion of coursework requirements if the candidate and committee believe this arrangement is in the interests of successful completion of the work. Candidates residing away from the lower mainland are particularly encouraged to take advantage of this provision.
  2. The topic, format and criteria for assessment must be approved in advance by the student’s supervisor. A proposal will be presented in advance as part of the approval process. Minutes of the approval process will be filed with the department by the supervisor.
  3. The Graduating Paper must be accepted for credit and signed by the graduate supervisor.
  4. Completed Graduating Papers are housed in the Education Library. An approval form is signed by the supervisor and department head, and is filed in the department.
  5. M.Ed. Graduating Papers may be submitted electronically in pdf form accompanied by the approval form signed by the supervisor and department head and the Copyright Clearance Form.