Offers students an opportunity to reflect on concentration-specific work, considering their development as scholars, practitioners, and leaders in the field of education. Students are required to demonstrate mastery of content through practicum or a significant project adapted to the professional requirements of each concentration. After a thorough process of feedback and revision, students are required to present their final ePortfolios in a public forum to showcase their work and demonstrate achievement of program competencies.
“The more you read, the more you know.
The more you know, the more places you’ll go”
The process of reflection has never been so complete as it has been in this Capstone course. To review with full understanding the body of work produced in a degree program, to capitalize on considerations of both professional and personal experience is an incredible journey filled with insight, connections and occasionally a rueful “what was I thinking” kind of a grin that comes from learning from past mistakes.
We began our course with an annotated curriculum that had us scrambling to review each class that we have taken in our degree program. To think deeply and consider how each of these courses has contributed to our knowledge, how each has changed or shaped us and expanded the way we interact with the world around us.
Next we examined our own personal and professional competencies, and in doing so we discovered that our struggle to categorize what we know and what we understand is universal. That each of us looked at that daunting list of Program Competencies and wondered how we fit. We also learned that we did fit and that is something we found out largely through the support, feedback and advice offered between and among classmates.
But wait, there’s more!
Let us not forget our case studies. Those enormous undertakings to pin down a single problem of practice and share the experience with others. What an intense but equally rewarding experience. To try and view your experience through the eyes of the viewer, to try to anticipate their questions and concerns, their curiosity and their compassion.
And then finally this. The culmination of all of my learning here within the Higher Education Administration concentration and the building of an IKP Portfolio that for me took the shape of my website, ElisabethCassinari.com. And also in the shape of the video posted to my M.Ed Portfolio, and in this reflection here and now.
And the journey is not over, because what I have become along this path to higher education is a life-long learner. And the life-long learner is infinitely curious, forever questioning and walking along those roads less travelled by.
The annotated curriculum was the first of many assignments in the capstone course. Here was the first of the great reviews of the program. Each class was revisited, the syllabi reviewed, and assignments pondered. Reflection than ensued to discover just what it was that each class gave to us, how we learned, how it changed us, how it is all connected. Below you will find my own annoted curriculum, with only the added thought that each course and the connections between the courses are far greater than such a review can contain.
Problem of Practice: Case Study
There was nothing simple in honing down the list of possible problems in which to build this case study around, though I struggled because my experience to date has largely been outside of the higher education field. Yet as I have so often found, everything is related--what you learn in one field you can apply to another, just as what you learn in one course builds upon everything you learn in the next.
I chose to study the issue of a hostile work environment created by people who were either intentionally or unintentionally ignorant of transgender identity and culture--people who let anger and fear form their view, who let stereotypes guide their actions. To solve this problem I utilized the power of partial solutions, because an issue as big as this cannot be solved in one day, and certainly not by one person. However, it is often one person who starts to turn the tide and I became that person by starting difficult conversations with colleagues and coworkers at every level of the corporation I was working for.
In order to do this topic justice and create real change I used learning from many of my previous courses, such as Culture, Equity, Power and Influence, and Education Law, Policy and Finance, as well as Student Demographics in order to educate and inform the actual experience and to craft the case and I encourage you reader, to click the banner below and begin your own exploration.
The IKP Portfolio is the culmination of our work as students within the Masters of Education program, and just as we are all more than students so too are our portfolios more than just a reflection of that role. They are deeply connected to our professional and personal selves as well; to who we have been, to who we are now, and to who we want to become in the future.
I invite you to watch the introductory video to my portfolio using the link below where you will learn some of the reasons behind my design decisions and why I chose to share some of the experiences and thoughts that you will find within my portfolio.