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Departmental Honors

Policy statement

Departmental Honors is an academic honor for students who demonstrate particular promise in their field of study and meet specific requirements determined by the faculty. Students may earn Departmental Honors in the major area of B.A., B.S., and B.F.A. degree program where the faculty have adopted a formal Departmental Honors program.

Departmental Honors requirements and opportunities vary among units in the College and may include:

  • Participation in some phase of honors coursework (seminars, tutorials, and courses of independent study) each semester of the last two years.
  • An independent project of research, study, or creative achievement, culminating in a paper, laboratory problem, field research problem, or creative effort.
  • A comprehensive examination, given in the last semester of the senior year, covering the work of the concentration group. It may be oral, written, or both, as the department desires. One faculty member outside the student’s major field is always asked to participate.

To be eligible for Departmental Honors, students must:

  1. Be pursuing a B.A., B.S., or B.F.A. in the area in which the Departmental Honors will be awarded;
  2. Have a minimum College GPA of 3.300 at the time of application to the Departmental Honors program AND at the time of graduation;
  3. Obtain approval of the unit chairperson/director or departmental honors committee for admission to the unit’s Departmental Honors program.
  4. Complete the Departmental Honors program requirements as listed in the Bulletin.

A potential candidate for honors should consult as soon as possible with the Departmental Honors advisor or the chairperson/director of the unit about requirements. Students wishing to earn honors in more than one unit must complete a distinct body of work for each honors notation.

Departmental Honors work is often done under the course numbers 399 for juniors and 499 for seniors. The number of credit hours earned under these two course numbers is determined by the departmental honors committee, but it normally should not exceed a maximum total of 15 credit hours.

Departmental Honors is separate and distinct from the Hutton Honors College’s Honors Notation.

  • 2021-05-01: Revised policy language for clarity, particularly that departmental honors can only be earned in conjunction with a major.
  • 2018-05-01: Revised policy language for clarity.

About this policy

Policy ID:

Academic Opportunities and Distinctions

Version Date: