Whether you are looking to understand what the DNP capstone project is all about, or you have the excitement of finally getting to put your knowledge into practice into a project as part of your studies, getting to understand what the DNP capstone project and the numerous ideas you can implement, is a great way to kick start your journey.
So, what is the DNP Capstone project?
Also known as the DNP research project, this is a type of project that will enable you to put your knowledge into practical use, to show mastery of your advanced nursing speciality. It will also reflect your preferred area of specialization.
The DNP capstone project offers a variety of choices ranging from portfolios, manuscript publication to practice topic dissemination.
Regardless of the project that you will choose, they will all follow a standard procedure; planning, implementation and finally the evaluation process. The main aim of the project should be offering education and delivering care. It will also show your ability to practice at the highest clinical practice level.
Critical thinking and research are essential skills in putting together your project. To help you formulate a project idea, the 5-step evidence process is advised. They are;
- Identify the issue or problem and formulate a question.
- The literature review. Here you are to apply the evidence you researched from the literature
- Evaluate the credibility of your resources backed by evidence. Gather data by justifiable means.
- Apply the findings
- Implement the results
Some of the pertinent questions you will need to ask before embarking on the project are; whom does this project focus on? What issues will the project address? Is it grounded in clinical practice? Is it going to solve a problem or is the purpose to inform? Will it demonstrate mastery of my skills and lastly, is the project backed by evidence?
Now that you have an idea of what a DNP capstone project is, what questions you need to address in your project and the basic procedure that each project should follow, here are 10 capstone project ideas you can consider.
- Care for Childhood Obesity
Basing your project on extensive research, you will come up with a comprehensive project paper on why you believe that childhood obesity is a menace, what your project will do to implement change in healthcare systems on how obesity cases are handled. Provide a comparative analysis of the link between obesity and other health-related complications, the role that lifestyle choices play in increasing obesity rates among children. This project will offer education and show the resources that will be utilized in caring for and for the patients with childhood obesity and measures that will be put in place to curb it.
- Recommendation for Alcohol Detoxification
There are emerging trends of increased alcoholism, and victims find it challenging to quit. This project will show the obstacles in the path to recovery from alcoholism, whether there are structural support systems that make the transition easy for individuals wishing to quit alcoholism or why the victims fall back to alcoholism. You will also show the course of action of how you plan to implement the detoxification process, the challenges that arise from the process such as the withdrawal symptoms. After the implementation, show the conclusion that you arrived at. Use clearly illustrated data to back your research.
PTSD presents its symptoms in varying forms from one individual to another. This project will address the statistics that show how prevalent it is, the groups of people that are most likely to be affected by it, what are its causes and whether it presents itself in one gender over the other one.
You will also provide an exhaustive guide that will establish a treatment process for patients with PTSD as well as the challenges that prevent access to treatment for victims.
- Incorporating Faith for Community Empowerment
This project will look to address the important role that faith plays in most communities and why incorporating it in the community’s empowerment projects is vital for the success of such projects. Use data to show why compared to other alternative empowerment strategies, the faith-based approach records better performance. This report will be used for educational purposes for health providers who want to better serve people at the community level.
- Evaluating Asthma Protocol in Schools
With some school going students ailing from asthma, the purpose of this project will be to sensitize the involved stakeholders such as school nurses and other health care providers on the measures and protocols to be observed when presented with asthma cases. The project will focus on the symptoms to be on the lookout for, whether certain environmental conditions increase the rate of asthma attacks and the kind of medication management protocols to be adhered to.
- The influence of the Media on the Nutritional Choices of Children
With the advent of technology, media has been influential in the choices people make in regards to their lifestyle. One of the affected groups is children who might take up nutritional advice from what they consume on the media. This in turn influences their eating habits and food preferences. This project seeks to understand the impact of the media on nutritional health and choices and recommend, based on research how to curb this growing concern
- Screening for Postpartum Depression
Studies indicate that many women continue to suffer from postpartum depression because of the lack of the necessary screening that would otherwise provide them with the needed care and support towards their journey to recovery. This DNP project aims to highlight and fill the gaps that exist in the provision of resources that will go towards effective screening of postpartum depression and the care for it afterwards. The outcome will be to increase the number of patients screened and offer education to the community on the recommended care practices.
- Pain Management Measures for Women in Labor
There are several ways to manage pain for women in labour. This project will offer the detailed options available that have been researched, to educate the healthcare providers including midwives and the first responders on the appropriate pain management techniques in a manner that ensures safety for the mother and those around her. The project will seek to find the relationship between the rate of recovery and the amount of support that the mother receives during that period.
- Relationship Between Patients Ability to Cover Cost of Health Care and the Quality of Care They Receive in Health Facilities
Do patients who can pay for all medical costs receive better care than those without the means? What happens when a patient cannot afford healthcare? What happens to them? These are some of the questions that your project will answer. Use the research you have gathered and present it to support that claim. The aim of the project will be able to educate the stakeholders in the health sector and offer guidance and suggestions of measures to put in place to ensure accessible health services across populations.
- Are There Effects of Smoking on Passive Smokers?
In this project, you will explain what passive smoking is, the health issues that arise from it. Using carefully researched data, you will show the comparison between the health implications of active smoking versus passive smoking. For instance, are passive smokers more susceptible to lung cancer than active smokers are? Can passive smokers suffer from smoking addiction like active smokers?
The above-listed examples are just some of the many project ideas that you can research on and then write about. It is important to follow the proper format when coming up with the project. The standard format follows these steps:
- Title page
Per the standard APA format, you will be required to put in details such as the name of the project you will be addressing and your name. This will be the first page of your research paper
This section provides you with the opportunity to extend gratitude to all those who have helped you in one way or the other with your research project. It is always a good gesture to show that you collaborated with people in your project, so go ahead and list all of them. After the acknowledgements, you will have a table of contents section that helps the reader know and navigate through your work with ease.
- Executive summary
Unlike the abstract, this section provides a little more depth to what your DNP capstone project is about. Think of it as a synopsis of your project, complete with an introduction, body and conclusion.
- Problem statement
This section contains an introduction to the project, the statement of the problem, the conceptual framework and lastly, the objectives and purpose of your project.
Here you are supposed to provide proof of the existing problem as well as show the effect that it will have on the healthcare systems and people. The conceptual framework should act as a guide in the development of your work.
- Literature review
This section gives you the chance to back your information with evidence from the literature. When using the different literary sources available, make sure to go for the ones that have proven to be reliable. These can include acclaimed articles and Meta-analysis.
Describe in detail and systematically arrange all your information.
- Description of your resolution plan
This phase allows you to demonstrate your clear plan of action. You will show the data you collected as well as the tools used to collect them. Explain who the target of your chosen course of action is.
- Results section
Any DNP project aims to investigate the cause, implement the plan of action and report the results. Therefore, this is the section where you break down the details of your results using the data that you present. If you arrived at a solution, this is where you list it.
- Recommendations and conclusion.
Your DNP project is winding up. This is the section where you provide a detailed summary of the project and explain the course of action. This should be based on the results that you posted, using the well-researched information from your literature review. Provide sound solutions and suggestions to be taken by the stakeholders you are targeting in your project.
- Reference page
This is the bibliography section where you list all the references that you used in your DNP capstone project. They should be well listed per the APA referencing style and format. All the in-text citations that appear in your project should appear in the reference section.
Now that you have in-depth knowledge into what goes into making a great DNP capstone project, what other details should you be looking out for? Some other equally important details include: always being objective, professional, having excellent research skills; and continuing to practice to refine it, editing your work and making sure to proofread as you look for some minor details that might have been missed. Do this many times before finally submitting your project.
It can be a long draining process to come up with a DNP project you can take pride in. Take time and map out the entire process carefully. If you are struggling to look for the project that is the right fit for you, conduct thorough research as you go through the many examples, such as those listed above to find one that is in line with your career goals. Early planning will enable you to have more control over your project. This ensures you have the opportunity to use the best-researched evidence, thus greatly improving the quality of your DNP capstone project.
Finally, take breaks in between your project. This will allow you to see the project from different angles each time and enable you to notice the mistakes like typos and grammar errors.
Now go ahead and start working on your project.
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