The Honors Program
The Honors Program serves motivated, accomplished students by nurturing creativity, critical thinking, and scholarship beyond the usual academic frameworks. Through classes, co-curricular activities, service projects, and advisement, the Honors Program creates a learning community that emphasizes intellectual exploration. Students may participate in the Honors Program throughout their undergraduate career. Students are encouraged to apply at the time of their initial registration at the University. Students may also enter the Program after the first semester, and inquiries from interested students are welcome. Please phone (701) 777-2219 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Students in any college of the University may enroll in the Honors Program.
The Program is administered by a Director and a University Honors Committee. The Honors Program can adjust its academic program to fit the needs and goals of individual students. In response to this flexibility, Honors Program students are expected to demonstrate intellectual excellence and to pursue learning independently. Opportunities to do so are offered in Honors colloquia, other special classes, Honors sections of regular courses, and regular courses taken in Honors mode. Most students graduate from the Program as “Scholars in the Honors Program” while also fulfilling a major in one of the Colleges; however, the Honors Program also offers the option of creating an individually designed program of study through Honors. This option may result in either a B.A. or a B.S. degree earned through the College of Arts and Sciences.
For beginning students, special introductory courses are available to familiarize students with the nature of the Program and to acquaint Honors students with faculty. Advanced courses and colloquia introduce students to the full range of the disciplines which make up the University.
The requirements to graduate as a Scholar in the Honors Program are:
- a minimum of 24 credits in Honors work including 8 credits of colloquia;
- a Sophomore Honors Portfolio accepted by the Honors Committee; and
- a senior thesis and oral presentation (with a grade no lower than “B”) in a chosen field.
After successful completion of 9 Honors credit hours and submission of the Sophomore Honors Portfolio, the student will be considered for full membership in the Honors Program. Completion of all Honors requirements, including the senior thesis, fulfills the University's Essential Studies Requirements. To graduate with an Honors major alone, students are additionally required to develop, in conjunction with an Honors advisor, an academic program based around individual needs. This program of study must be approved by the Honors Program. The colloquia mentioned above are topical and, usually, interdisciplinary discussion courses, one semester in length, on topics chosen according to student and faculty interests. The Honors mode entails an extra credit of work in a regular course so a greater than usual depth and/or breadth of knowledge can be achieved in that course.
In addition, Honors Program students are expected to maintain a solid academic performance. A student should attain a 3.2 grade point average by the sophomore year and maintain it. If this does not occur, the Honors Committee reviews the standing of the student.
Students in the Honors Program have many opportunities to develop their own ideas and their writing and research skills; they also benefit from close association with faculty and other students who share their intellectual interests. Honors Program courses encourage students to think independently, creatively, and critically; to express their thoughts clearly, orally and in writing; to expand their perspectives on the world; to develop as citizens; to understand the nature of scholarly inquiry; and to forge connections among disciplines. Successful completion of the Program is a clear signal to prospective employers and graduate or professional schools that the graduate is a serious, well-prepared, accomplished student.