Honors in Majors

Qualified students may apply for honors in their major(s) by completing an honors project, which will consist of a program of independent study culminating in a paper, artistic creation, or performance. Students who meet the criteria given below will receive the designation “Honors in (field of study)” on their diplomas.

Students applying for major honors work must have at least a 3.4 grade point average in the major, calculated at the time of their application for honors work. In order to receive honors, students must have at least a 3.4 GPA in their major at graduation.

The honors project must be sponsored by a faculty member or members in the student’s major, who will serve as the primary advisor(s) for the project, and by a committee composed of the primary advisor(s) and not fewer than two additional faculty. (Advisors are encouraged to include a faculty member from outside the student’s major on the committee.)

Honors work is undertaken in the senior year or in the Sum- mer prior to the senior year. While the project may be based on previous work, e.g., a seminar paper or independent study, it must represent a significant and original project over and above any past work. Application for major honors work is made the semester or Summer prior to undertaking the project.

A student applying for major honors work must submit a pro- postal to his or her committee. If the committee and depart- meant administering the student’s major approve the proposal, permission to enroll in honors work in the following term will be forwarded to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. At the discretion of the department a student may take one unit of honors work in one semester or two one-half units over two semesters.The department will determine whether honors credit may be used as an elective in the major. The application form is available in the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Administration.

The committee will evaluate the completed project based on the final product and on an oral examination. Projects other than research papers must include a narrative essay describing the work.

The primary advisor(s) will assign a letter grade for the project after consulting with the other committee members. Students completing the one-half unit honors course will receive a grade of “NG” at the end of the first term of the project; upon completion of the second half-unit course, the grade for the entire project will be assigned to both courses. If the student does not complete the second half-unit course, a letter grade will be assigned to the first.

Students whose projects receive a grade of “A-” or higher will be awarded honors, provided they have a 3.4 GPA in their major at graduation. Departments are encouraged to arrange a public forum to allow students receiving major honors to present their work.