Honors College curriculum

The Honors College offers three flexible curricular pathways that accommodate students within any major(s): the Honors Baccalaureate, the Provost’s Scholars pathway, and the 1874 Scholars pathway.

Honors Baccalaureate

The Honors Baccalaureate is the most immersive honors pathway. This pathway incorporates a first-year experience requirement that distinguishes it from the other two pathways and, more generally, favors curricular honors engagement. Like the other pathways, it requires students to engage in at least two approved cocurricular activities for honors credit and integrates an Honors Signature Experience. The Honors Baccalaureate is well suited to first-time, first-year students seeking to engage with the Honors College throughout their undergraduate years.

Provost's Scholars

Honoring the tremendous contributions of the Office of the Provost to honors education at the University, the Provost’s Scholars pathway offers a balanced middle ground. Its requirements allow students opting for this pathway to establish an equilibrium between their curricular and cocurricular honors activities if they so choose. Like all other honors pathways, it requires students to engage in at least two approved cocurricular activities for honors credit and integrates an Honors Signature Experience. Because it does not require a first-year experience course, the Provost’s Scholars pathway is well suited to students who join the Honors College in their second year of study.

1874 Scholars

Named with reference to the year of the University’s founding, the 1874 Scholars pathway is the foundational honors pathway. Its requirements allow students opting for this pathway to favor cocurricular engagement if they so choose. Like all other honors pathways, it requires students to engage in at least two approved cocurricular activities for honors credit and integrates an Honors Signature Experience. In its brevity, it is well suited to the needs of continuing and transfer students as well as students whose majors incorporate a time-intensive culminating experience such as a professional practicum.

Completion of all three honors pathways is measured in honors experiences as detailed in the table below. Pathways do not require the completion of a specific number of credit hours and they are not time dependent. Each pathway includes four flex experiences; these may be academic or cocurricular experiences.

Honors Curricular Pathways Requirements

Pathway Requirements Honors Baccalaureate Provost's Scholars 1874 Scholars
Honors Experiences 14 12 10
Enhanced Academic Experiences 8 6 4
Cocurricular Experiences 2 2 2
First-Year Experience Yes No No
Honors Record Yes Yes Yes
Honors Signature Experience Yes Yes Yes

Any student may apply for admission to the Honors College and select any one of the three pathways; students may also move between the pathways as their courses of study dictate. Students in every honors pathway will complete a specified number of enhanced academic experiences and cocurricular experiences as well as an honors record and an honors signature experience.

Honors experiences

Honors experiences include, but are not limited to, academic courses; cocurricular activities like creative performance, service-learning, internships, and research engagement; applying for a nationally competitive scholarship or fellowship; presenting work at an academic conference; etc.

Enhanced academic experiences. Enhanced academic experiences are equivalent to honors courses. These may be honors sections of courses or contract courses for honors credit.

Submit your contract form

Cocurricular experiences. Cocurricular experiences include, but are not limited to, service, internships, research, professional examinations, leadership of clubs and organizations, etc.

Submit your cocurricular form

First-year experience course. Students who enter the Honors College as first-year students enroll in a required honors first-year experience course and are, thus, eligible for the Honors Baccalaureate. For students who enter the Honors College later in their undergraduate careers, a major-required first-year experience course may fulfill the Honors Baccalaureate first-year experience requirement. For students selecting the Provost’s Scholars or 1874 Scholars pathways, the honors first-year experience course may count toward required enhanced academic experiences but it is not a requirement of the pathways.

Honors record. The honors record is an advising tool that integrates artifacts from students' honors experiences and critical reflection into an electronic portfolio.

Honors signature experience. The honors signature experience is equivalent to a major-required thesis/capstone for majors that require one. For majors that do not require a thesis/capstone, students will design their own project in accordance with their intellectual, professional, and personal goals. Projects might take the form of creative performances (e.g., senior recitals), extended course projects (e.g., consulting work), an extended service-learning project (e.g., establishing a community program), a professional experience (e.g., internship), etc. Signature experiences may or may not be associated with an academic course.