Culminating Experience

A culminating experience is one that requires a student to synthesize and integrate knowledge acquired in coursework and other learning experiences and to apply theory and principles in a situation that approximates some aspect of professional practice.  It must be used as a means by which faculty judge whether the student has mastered the body of knowledge and can demonstrate proficiency in the required competencies.  

All MPH degree students at Kansas State University must complete a culminating experience, chosen from three main possibilities with the assistance and advice of their major professor, supervisory committee members and the MPH Program Director.  The options available are explained below:

Possible Culminating Experiences:

  1. Field Experience and Capstone Project Presentation and Oral Defense.  In this option, during the final semester, the student presents oral and written reports from the field experience and associated capstone project to his/her graduate supervisory committee members and other invited guests.  The supervisory committee members will assess required knowledge and competencies during and after the presentation.  

  2. Public Health Research Thesis Presentation and Oral Defense.  In this option, during the final semester, the student presents an oral report and written thesis from their original research investigation of a public health problem or topic to his/her graduate supervisory committee members and other invited guests.  Depending on the expectations of the supervisory committee, the student may also present some details related to their field experience at the same time. The supervisory committee members will assess required knowledge and competencies during and after the presentation.

  3. Master's Report Presentation and Oral Defense.  In this option, during the final semester, the student presents oral and written reports related to their individual work on a public health-related topic in addition to an oral and written reports about their field experience, to his/her graduate supervisory committee members and other invited guests.  The supervisory committee members will assess knowledge and competencies during and after the presentation.

Reference:  MPH Graduate Student Handbook (12.11)