The Honors Curriculum

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Winter on Campus with student walking


University Honors deepens and widens the college experience.  We build foundations in multi-faceted thinking through an array of seminar-style classes that fulfil the University Core Curriculum and introduce you to the ways in which various disciplines tackle big questions and problems. At the intermediate and advanced level, Honors students deepen their academic experience by independent studies/contracting courses and working on thesis with faculty.   

Listed below are the types of courses which may be taken to earn credit in the University Honors Program: 

UHON 351: The Honors Curriculum

UHON 351 seminars are the heart of the Honors Program. In small seminar-style classes you will explore fundamental questions with your peers and faculty who bring their most current research and creative work in the classroom.  Courses change every semester with some of the courses clustered around a particular theme.  Our  Fall 19-Spring 20 theme is Survival.  

Courses for Fall 2019

Courses for Spring 2020

Honors courses substitute for University Core Curriculum requirements, and are numbered to correspond to the UCC categories, as follows:

  • 351F: Fine Arts
  • 351I: Interdisciplinary Studies
  • 351L: Human Health
  • 351M: Multicultural Diversity in the U.S.
  • 351O: Social Science
  • 351S: Physical and Life Sciences
  • 351U: Humanities

In October (for Spring classes) and March (for Fall classes), the UHP has "Reservation Day." The actual dates and location of these events will be announced in The 4-1-1. Students must come in person and reserve a seat in a maximum of one course per semester. Students will be given a registration card with the course and CRN (Course Registration Number) to keep until Early Registration Day. Honors students who fail to register on Early Registration Day will forfeit their seat reservation.

Courses fill up quickly on a first-come, first-served basis. Students who decide not to register for their reserved course should notify the Honors office.

Designed especially for University Honors Students, these small classes are taught by faculty of recognized excellence and substitute for Core Curriculum requirements. Reservation cards are required for registration in these courses; the cards are limited in number and available only at the Honors Program office. 

Intermediate and Advanced Honors Courses

Departmental Honors Recognized courses

Designed for outstanding students in specific departments, these courses may be counted toward the Honors Program certificate or degree. Download a complete listing of courses.

Contract courses 

Is there a class in which you would like to work more closely with the Professor?   This is usually the case if you would like to go above and beyond the class in an area of your interest.  The Honors Contract allows you to receive honors credit in a regular course.  Our faculty are passionate about teaching and sharing their research with students.  Yet, in working with you individually, they are also investing their time and intellectual labor in you.  Talk with your Professor, see if you can both agree upon your intellectual pursuits in the class, and fill in the Honors Contract Form.  This may well be the start of a lifelong relationship with a mentor.   Some possible examples of Honors contracts include, but are not limited to:

  • A paper on a more challenging topic than those required of other students
  • More sophisticated experiments or problems
  • Extra problem sets or experiments in an area not heavily explored in class
  • Extended readings on an author or historical figure not thoroughly covered in the class
  • Viewing/experiencing cultural artifacts related to the subject matter and writing response papers
  • Leading a class discussion on a topic thoroughly studied and prepared by the student
  • Translating a short work
  • Meetings with the instructor to discuss additional readings

The contract form is submitted to the Director of the UHP for approval. The deadline is Friday of the third week of classes; during the summer term, the deadline is the Friday of the first week of classes.

(Download the honors contract form)

Independent Study

An independent project (readings, field study, creative projects), approved in advance by the Director. Complete a UHON 399 form.

Internships and Travel/Study Programs

Honors credit may be given for a faculty-directed paper based on some internships and travel/study programs, if approved by the Honors Director before the internship or travel.


Required of all students pursuing the Honors diploma; an option for students pursuing the Honors certificate.