9.20. Honors

Programs offered:
Honors in [Name of Discipline] (TU)

All students at Oglethorpe are encouraged to attain academic and personal excellence through active engagement with and initiative in their education. The University offers an Honors program for those students who demonstrate the potential and desire to further challenge themselves intellectually, both within and beyond the classroom setting.

The honors program allows students the opportunity to work closely with peers and faculty from various disciplines, while developing their own interests and initiative.

Students who complete the Honors program will develop their own independent project, while learning how their interests relate to relevant disciplinary discourse, other academic disciplines and the world beyond academia.  A successful Honors program student will:

  • Learn to locate, evaluate and analyze academic resources and understand methods of clear and accurate written and oral communication that are consistent with general standards across academic disciplines.
  • Collaborate with faculty and peers to develop and answer academic research questions.
  • Demonstrate competency in discipline-specific writing through a scholarly academic research project or creative work.

Students are encouraged to learn about the features and requirements of the Honors-level work by taking courses for an “H” designation prior to applying to the Honors program.

The “H” Designation is a means by which a student may apply to take Core courses and major courses at an Honors level. A student may apply to take a course for “H” credit if the student and faculty member teaching the course agree on work to be completed to change a “regular” course into an “Honors” course, and if the course is approved during the pre-registration period by both the Honors Committee and the professor of the course. Generally, additional work required for “H” credit will allow a student to demonstrate a reasonably high degree of achievement in independent research, creative and/or analytical/critical thinking, or successful integration of theory into practice. One or any combination of these elements, successfully demonstrated in work not required of the regular class members, will qualify as a means to “honorize” course content. Submit the electronic “Honors Credit Conversion Form” provided for this purpose on the Honors Program website.

A course may not be converted to an “H” designation after the third week of the semester. An Honors conversion does not count toward the grade for the course, but a student must earn at least a “B” in the regular course to have the Honors designation put on their transcript. For more information and application guidelines, see http://oglethorpe.edu/academics/honors-program/.

Interested students should apply for admission to the program either:

  • By the end of the student’s sophomore year for admittance to HON 301 in the fall of the student’s junior year, or
  • By the end of the fall semester of the student’s junior year for admittance to HON 301 the following spring.

Applications should be submitted to the director of the Honors program for review by the Honors Committee.

Students accepted into the Honors program may apply for funds to facilitate thesis research the summer prior to their senior year. Academic honors earned through the Honors program are recognized at commencement exercises, on the student’s diploma and on the student’s transcript of grades. The Honors program includes requirements that are currently available only during daytime hours.  ADP students who have questions about the Honors program should contact the director of the Honors program.

The ultimate goal of the Honors program experience is to complete and defend an Honors thesis under the direction of a faculty supervisor and reading committee.  Students are required to submit their thesis to the Oglethorpe Journal of Undergraduate Research, and to submit a hard copy of the final, approved version of their thesis to the OU Library archives. Students are also required to present their thesis research/project at the annual Liberal Arts and Sciences Symposium (LASS).  The Honors program provides students an enhanced structure in which to develop confidence in their abilities to understand and discuss complex ideas and texts as well as to engage in problem solving and research design.  Honors program graduates are particularly prepared to pursue graduate study.

Honors in [Name of Discipline] (TU)

      1. Optional completion of one or more “H”-designated courses, which may be taken at any time in the student’s career.
      2. Completion of all of the following courses:
        HON 301 Honors Research Methods (may be taken twice)
        HON 401 Honors Thesis
        HON 402 Honors Thesis Revision
      3. Additional requirements and things to note:
        1. Students must apply and be accepted into the Honors program before enrolling in HON 301.
        2. Students wishing to apply directly to HON 401 must petition the Honors Committee to waive the HON 301 requirement, and applications must include a formal prospectus that has been approved by the student’s intended thesis director and two faculty readers.
        3. To enroll in HON 301, HON 401, and HON 402, students must continuously maintain a cumulative grade-point average of 3.3, with a 3.5 cumulative grade-point average in the academic discipline in which the honors research is anchored.
        4. It is recommended that HON 301 be taken the fall semester of the student’s junior year, but a prospectus must be finished and submitted to the Honors director by the end of the spring semester of the student’s junior year. The course will culminate in an Honors thesis prospectus approved by one primary and two secondary faculty readers. Students must receive the grade of Satisfactory (“S”) in HON 301 in order to continue in the Honors program.
        5. Each student of the Honors program must secure a faculty mentor to supervise their thesis project by the beginning of the semester during which they enroll in HON 301. It is each student’s responsibility to establish a reading committee chair in order to fulfill the scholarship requirement for the Honors program.
        6. HON 401 is to be taken the fall semester of the student’s senior year. A complete first draft of the thesis must be submitted to the student’s reading committee by the end of this semester.
        7. HON 402 is to be taken the spring semester of the student’s senior year. The final draft of the thesis is presented to the reading committee at least four weeks prior to the end of classes, and the student will be asked to make a formal defense of the thesis. Students are also required to present their thesis research/project at the annual Liberal Arts and Sciences Symposium (LASS).
        8. The faculty supervisor, in consultation with the reading committee and the Honors director, determines whether Honors are to be awarded by the first day of the final examination period in the spring of the student’s senior year.
        9. Students are required to submit their completed thesis to the Oglethorpe Journal for Undergraduate Research in a timely fashion, after inclusion of suggested changes from the reading committee following the successful defense of the thesis. Students are also required to submit a hard copy of the final, approved version of their thesis to the OU Library.