Plan B – Project (A Practical Contribution)

The Plan B project is a practical application of the research base that makes a meaningful contribution to your community. Projects are personal, and topics vary widely in format and length. It is your responsibility to define the purpose, and to organize, and implement the project. The advisor will assist with these tasks and will provide feedback to help you complete it successfully.

The following guidelines apply for a Plan B project design.

  • The project should be purposeful and have meaning for the individual and his/her
    community, and /or importance for the field of study.
  • The project should refer to a relevant body of knowledge (this might be a review of
    literature, grounding in historical context, oral history).
  • The project should involve some form of documentation that can be kept on file. This
    can vary widely and might include a scholarly paper (for example action research, field
    study curriculum development), a standards-based portfolio, or a product like song,
    dance, video, website, or exhibit of photographs.
  • The project should communicate a connection to practice and/or professional growth.

In addition, you must make certain:

  • The Plan B project contains evidence in the final chapter summary that you have connected study outcomes with current knowledge in the content area, including previous research relevant to the Plan B project.
  • The final chapter or summary makes clear the professional impact of the study
    findings on your future directions.
  • The concluding chapter outlines general recommendations that are consonant with the findings of the project.

Your Literature Review

Most culminating projects will contain a literature review. Therefore, you will learn to write a literature review through a major assignment in the core course, FamR 491 Advanced Child Development. The purpose of this review is to summarize and integrate information drawn principally from literary and research sources (e.g. books and professional journals). The literature review should be more than a compendium of facts and findings. It should provide the reader with an overview and interpretation of the material reviewed.

The knowledge and information that you acquire from reviewing publications related to your topic area should help you to:

  • Clarify the problem or topic being studied;
  • Gain a better understanding of the work that has been done on the topic by researchers in the past;
  • Identify connections, contradictions, gaps and inconsistencies that exist in the professional literature related to the topic being studied; and
  • Delineate strategies or methodologies that have proven to be useful in solving the problem or addressing the particular paper topic.

Final Examination (Oral) for the Plan B Project or Paper

Keep in regular contact with your advisor and submit segments for review as scheduled. When the culminating project is near completion, talk to your advisor about scheduling the final oral examination (a requirement for graduation). Your advisor will arrange a date for the final oral, which will include your advisor and second reader (Plan B). Get a copy of the final draft of your culminating project to these participants at least two weeks in advance of the final oral exam.

The oral examination provides you with an opportunity to discuss the process, content and application of your project. Often students will receive suggestions for the final editing of the paper at the oral. You should take notes to be certain that these suggestions and directives are incorporated into your final draft.

After completing the oral examination, Plan B students should submit a copy of the project signature page, signed by your advisor and reader to the CS Secretary, and reconfirm the final date for submission of the Plan B paper.

Upon completion of the oral and final editing of the Plan B, submit a pdf of the completed paper to As a courtesy, most students offer to give a hard copy of the final paper to their advisors/readers or committee members.

Formatting for a PLAN B Paper or Project

Title Page


Table of Contents

Chapter 1 – Introduction

  • Background about why you chose this topic (optional)
  • Statement of problem
  • Purpose (what is the need and the research questions to be addressed for a study or practical issue to be addressed by the capstone)
  • Overview of limitations of the study or project

Chapter 2 – Literature Review

  • Introduction (overview of topic areas)
  • Review of previous research
  • Summary and critique
  • Conclusions (summarize the major findings of the literature review)
Research Paper Project
Chapter 3 – Methodology

  • Overview (who, what, where, when, etc.)
  • Arrangements for conducting the project
    (how did you set it up?)
  • Description of participants (who and why
    you selected them)
  • Data collection (what you did and how
    you kept records, i.e. journals, student
    work, questionnaires, interviews,
    observations of participants, etc.)
  • Analysis of data (how did you analyze
    your data?)
Chapter 3 – Project Methodology

  • Description of the project (how it was
    developed, who participated, what you
    did, what issues you encountered, etc.)
Chapter 4 – Findings

  • What were the major things you found
  • Were there foreseen as well as unforeseen outcomes?
  • Discussion of findings (what do the findings mean to you?
  • How do your findings connect to the research literature?)
Chapter 4 – The Project

  • The actual project components – curriculum design,
    video, materials, etc.

Chapter 5 – Conclusions and Recommendations
The brief concluding chapter will summarize the major findings of the research study/project, discuss implications and/or lessons learned for you as a professional. Also you may include recommendations for the field.

Cite all works you referred to and other important sources using APA style.

Assign titles to each appendix entry by beginning with: Appendix A followed by a description of the entry, e.g. Appendix A: Student Interview Questionnaire, Appendix B: Student Observation Instrument, and so on depending on the number of entries in the appendix of your paper.

Plan B Research Paper or Project Timeline

First Year – Summer (2018)

  • Meet with your interim advisor (the MEd ECE Program Director).
  • Review the Program Handbook and clarify any questions about capstone and course requirements.
  • Label and upload exemplars from your first Summer into your MEd ECE Laulima Dropbox.
  • Set goals for professional involvement and growth in your first year.

First Year – Fall Semester (2018)

  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Begin to pursue a topic of interest you are interested in.
  • Begin to read widely and compile an annotated bibliography of your references.
  • Learn to use some other kind of software to assist you in the researching process. (e.g. Zotero or Mendelay)
  • Take preliminary notes and organize your ideas on the scope of the literature on your topic.
  • Compose an annotated bibliography of significant sources
  • Identify areas of need where you can make a meaningful contribution.

First Year – Spring Semester (2019)

  • Meet with interim advisor (the MEd ECE Program Director).
  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Update your Bibliography of References and begin to draft a Literature Review.
  • If you are planning to do research, read widely about research methodologies.
  • Complete CITI research modules.

Second Year – Summer Semester (2019)

  • Meet with your Interim Advisor & EDCS 632 Instructor.
  • Complete your course check. Make sure you are on track with credit requirements.
  • Complete your third summer’s coursework.
  • Using EDCS 632 as a foundation, commit to a capstone and begin to work towards your Plan B paper/project.

Second Year – Fall Semester (2019)

  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Complete work on your research course (EDCS 632). If you are going to do a Paper, use this project as the pilot for your entire study. Carry out your pilot and use the information gained to refine your study and submit an IRB application.
  • You will be transitioned to an advisor with expertise to support your area of interest
  • Create a timeline for completing your Plan B.
  • Update your bibliography.

Second Year – Spring Semester (2020)

By the end of the Spring 2017, you should have 80% or more of your research study Paper or Project completed and uploaded into your MEd ECE Laulima Dropbox.

  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Work regularly with your Plan B Advisor. Update your course check with the MEd ECE Director to make sure you are on track in meeting credit requirements.
  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Carry out your study or project and draft major sections.

Third Year – Summer Semester (2020)

  • Complete the final 2 required MEd ECE core courses and any remaining electives.
  • Revise Introduction and begin to draft Conclusion.

Third Year – Fall Semester 2020

  • Attend monthly on-line Cohort Seminars.
  • Final graduation check.
  • The Fall semester is dedicated to finalizing your Plan B and presenting your completed project at Plan B Oral Examination. You should be FINALIZING your work not drafting pieces. An important part of this semester is synthesizing what you have learned into a coherent and compelling whole. Deadlines are crucial so that your advisor and reviewers have the time needed to facilitate you through the editing process as you finalize your portfolio. Please be mindful of the deadlines during this semester as you may not graduate if they are not observed. We will update this timeline when the information is available.

Around 1st week of September

  • Deadline to apply for graduation. (Fill out forms in the Summer)

Around 2nd week of September

  • Upload into MEd ECE Laulima Dropbox the first draft of the entire paper or project for final review by advisor and reviewers and remove old drafts.
  • Your Plan B Advisor will work with you and a second reader to review your work. Contact your second reader to thank them for their time and support and to determine how they will send feedback to you. Your advisor will send comments using mark-up via email.

Around 4th week of October

  • Submit Revised paper or project for proofreading by your advisor and 2nd reader.
  • Prepare for Plan B Oral Examination.

Around 2nd week of November

  • At this point, your documentation should need only minor revisions. Work on this, incorporating written feedback by your advisor and 2nd reader.
  • Participate in Plan B – Orals Examination (If you live on a neighbor island, plan to come to Oʻahu for the Oral Presentations. Non-residents will be included via distance technology. Bring a hard copy of your Plan B paper or project coversheet for signing.

Around 1st week of December

  • Last day to upload scan and hardcopy of signed coversheet for plan B to your MEd ECE Drobox.
  • Last day to upload an approved FINAL version of Plan B in MEd ECE Laulima Dropbox. Remove all draft copies