One of the most intriguing benefits of the Honors program is the availability of small seminar classes of 15-18 students. These classes facilitate strong student/faculty interactions, are interdisciplinary in focus, and incorporate experiential learning activities. Recent course topics include: Biodiversity, Art of Mathematics, Poetry as Performance, National Parks and Monuments, Engineering for Life, The Science of Science Fiction, Artificial Intelligence, Wilderness Literature, Gender and Communications in the Workplace, Paradigm Shifts, Opera and Broadway, Science and Religion, and Biomedical Ethics.

Additional benefits include:

  1. The Honors Student Organization sponsors activities such as a Fall retreat on Lake Superior (Vermillion field station), dinner with a professor, movie nights, mentoring, Diversity Week, etc.
  2. Honors students have opportunities to present at state, regional and national honors conferences.
  3. Other benefits to Honors students include early scheduling of classes (on the first day of scheduling-same as seniors), advising from the Honors Director (in addition to regular academic advising), and the option of living in Ontario Hall (the “Honors house”).
  4. Honors students receive a University Honors Degree upon graduation; all 21 Honors credits are noted as such on the student’s transcript.
  5. Honors Program graduates receive an Honors stole to wear at commencement in recognition of their achievements.
  6. After graduation, letters of recommendation from the Honors Program Director and Honors Council will help you gain fulfilling employment or admission into law, medical, or graduate school.


  • Students with an SAT verbal + math score of at least 1200 (or an ACT composite score of at least 27) and a high school GPA of at least 3.5 are automatically invited to become Honors students. Others may petition the Honors Director for provisional admission to the program.
  • Students must maintain a 3.5 GPA to remain academically eligible for the program.
  • The University Honors Program requires 21 honors credits, half of which come from taking honors sections of general education courses or from completing “Honors Contracts” in non-Honors sections. With Honors Contracts, the student meets with the professor to tailor and undertake a project above and beyond the course’s typical expectations.
  • Honors courses include: HONR 101 (Honors Freshman Seminar; 1-2 credits), HONR 202 (Honors Contemporary Issues Seminar; 3 credits), HONR 302 (Honors Ideas Seminar; 3 credits), HONR 401 (Honors Senior Thesis; 3-4 credits).
  • The remaining credit(s) may be obtained either by enrolling in the appropriate number of HONR 101 seminars, contracting a regular course for Honors credit, or enrolling in other Honors courses.
  • Students entering with 6 AP credits in English will be granted a waiver of 3 Honors credits.
  • Honors students must meet with the Honors Director at the beginning of each semester for advising regarding their progress in the program.

Sample Schedule

Fall Spring
1st Year ENGL 110-H

Honors English I (3cr)

ENGL 111-H

Honors English II (3cr)

COMM 101-H

Honors Speech (3cr)

2nd Year HONR 101 Seminar (1cr)

(or Honors Contract)

HONR 202 Seminar (3cr)

Contemporary Issues

3rd Year HONR 302 Seminar (3cr)

Honors Ideas

HONR 101 Seminar (1cr)

(or Honors contract)

4th Year HONR 401 (4cr)

Honors Thesis (or equivalent in major)

Continue thesis work

Any questions?: Please contact Dr. Jason K. Swedene, University Honors Program Director, 223 Arts Center, (906) 635-2122,