The Honors College Curriculum: The Basics

Curriculum Structure

Students must accrue 25 HONS credits (honors-specific courses) to satisfy the Honors Core

Students must complete 9 hrs of Honors Directed (3 hr independent study/internship and 6 hr Bachelor’s Essay). These do not need to be HONS; can be completed under a departmental course number.

In the first year, students must complete: Honors Academic Writing (4 credit hours), Beyond George Street (Honors 1-credit FYE), Honors Engaged (year-long service learning project)

Students must complete courses in the following categories:

  • Honors Foundations (at least one course; 100/200 level; 3-5 credit hrs each)
    • Grounded in disciplinary thinking and methodology
    • Expose students to essential ideas/concepts in a discipline, the methodologies to address them, and tools to understand them.
    • Encourage students to make connections between theory and practice through active/hands-on learning, exposure to primary sources, and analytical writing assignments.
    • Courses are accelerated, contextualized or applied in a way that is distinct from non-honors course offering in same area.
  • Quantitative Literacy
    • Math 120 (or AP credit) OR Honors Calculus OR Honors Conceptual Tour of Mathematics
    • Honors Statistics will be added to course options
    • Provide students with a foundation that allows them to demonstrate quantitative literacy and the ability to solve problems in a wide array of contexts.
  • Exploring Complexity and Diversity Colloquia (at least two courses; 200/300 level; 3-4 credit hrs each; prerequisite – at least one Honors Foundations course)
    • Focus on central and enduring question
    • Courses offered within interdisciplinary themes (Foundations of Western Civilization, Values and Traditions in the Non-Western World, Elements of Human Culture and Expression, Ethics, History and Philosophy of Science, Diversity and Sustainability, Self, Other and Society, Inquiry, Discovery and Innovation
    • Critical dialogue in small group setting
    • Encourage rigorous approach to processing information and deepening understanding
    • Study of foundational texts/sources that have shaped thinking on focal question
  • Advanced Studies (at least one course, 300-level Honors Special Topics or 200- or 300-level Honors Disciplinary; 3-4 credit hours; prerequisite – one Honors Foundations, one Honors Colloquia, others according to needs of course)
    • Deep analysis of subject matter in a particular discipline or across disciplines
    • Focus on advancing ability to synthesize information from divergent sources to derive novel conclusions and innovative solutions.

See the full Honors College curriculum here.

Honors College Student Learning Outcomes

The Honors College curriculum has specific learning outcomes for each of its four competency-based categories (Foundations, Quantitative Literacy, Exploring Complexity and Diversity and Advanced Studies). These Honors-specific SLOs are outlined below. For more information, see the Honors SLOs/Curriculum Map and Honors SLOs with Course List.

Foundations of Knowledge and Methods of Inquiry SLOs

  1. Demonstrate the ability to create and communicate analytic arguments supported by evidence
  2. Analyze and synthesize information within and/or across disciplines
  3. Design and implement a major research project that reflects a high level of proficiency in methods of inquiry and ways of thinking

Quantitative Literacy SLOs

  1. Demonstrate quantitative literacy and the ability to solve problems in a wide array of contexts
  2. Demonstrate the ability to create and communicate analytic arguments supported by evidence
  3. Analyze and synthesize information within and/or across disciplines

Exploring Complexity and Diversity SLOs

  1. Demonstrate the ability to create and communicate analytic arguments supported by evidence
  2. Evaluate complex issues using an interdisciplinary perspective
  3. Analyze and synthesize information within and/or across disciplines
  4. Design and implement a major research project that reflects a high level of proficiency in methods of inquiry and ways of thinking

Advanced Disciplinary Studies and Special Topics Courses SLOs

  1. Demonstrate the ability to create and communicate analytic arguments supported by evidence
  2. Analyze and synthesize information within and/or across disciplines
  3. Design and implement a major research project that reflects a high level of proficiency in methods of inquiry and ways of thinking
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