Honors Option

Deadline for Honors Option

The deadline for student to submit the completed Honors Option form to the Honors Office is the third week of the regular semester.

Download the Honors Option form (pdf format) >>

The Honors Option allows students to earn Honors credit in a course not specifically designated “Honors.” It is activated when a professor and student draw up an agreement specifying the work the student needs to do to earn Honors credit. The following guidelines govern the Option:

  1. The agreement that defines the Honors Option is to be described on a form supplied by the Honors Office. The agreement is signed by the professor, the student, and the Honors Director. At the end of the semester, the Director asks the professor to verify that the agreement has been satisfied. At that point the professor has the right to cancel the agreement if the student has not completed or achieved the amount or quality of work agreed to. If the agreement has been satisfied, the Director then informs Academic Services that the student should receive Honors credit for the course. Generally, this credit will appear on the student's transcript midway through the next semester.
  2. The standard to use in establishing the Honors Option is that the student’s work should be above and beyond normal course requirements. Through the Honors Option, students should be absorbed into the inquiry of a course in such a way as to give them more than ordinary appreciation for and mastery of the intellectual discipline in question. In effect, a professor who agrees to work with a student under the Honors Option acts as the student’s mentor. A grade of no less than B for the regular course work is necessary before Honors credit can be given. Note: the honors option project is not factored into the student's final grade for the course. Instead, the project earns the student a certain number of "honors hours".
  3. The additional work expected of a student should result in at least 10 typed pages of writing. It might also include some of the following components:
    • A paper normally assigned for the course is given more elaborate preparation than expected of other students (and is ultimately 10 pages longer). The Honors student is asked to discuss the topic of the paper with the professor, to submit a preliminary draft, and then to write a final draft.
    • The professor arranges for tutorial sessions in which readings assigned to the Honors student are discussed.
    • A special research project introduces the Honors student to aspects of the course not normally covered in class.
    • In performance courses, the Honors student is asked to undertake a project of unusual complexity or breadth, or undertake research that provides a context for such a project. The writing required then explains, justifies, and analyzes the project, or it presents the research.