The Honors Program in History is a course of study intended to offer superior students an opportunity for a more challenging investigation of historical topics in an informal, small-group setting. All students who qualify for participation in the University Honors Program are eligible to enroll in history honors courses. In addition, history majors who fulfill designated requirements may earn a transcript notation indicating that they have graduated with honors in history.
Eligibility: History majors with a grade point average of at least 3.4 both overall and in the History Department are eligible for admission to the full program. In addition, there is an Honors track for history minors and social studies majors. These students must also have a 3.4 grade point average in the Department and the University for admission. Finally, all students whose majors and minors are in other fields and who meet the academic requirements set out above are welcomed and encouraged to consider partial participation.
The Honors Program will not be for everyone. At a time of renewed emphasis upon academic standards, the Honors Program of the History Department will, without apology or equivocation, for excellence. The work will be hard, but challenging; a the same time, the potential rewards, tangible and intangible, will be great. Students who meet the qualifications are urged to give very serious consideration to participating in the program.
Courses of Study: There are three types of participation, full, minor or social studies major, and partial. Connect to the requirements page to learn more.
Benefits: First and foremost, the program offers intellectual challenge. Students participating in the program investigate topics in more detail and at a deeper level than is possible in regular course. In addition, they have an opportunity to work closely with several professors and to receive more individualized instruction than would normally be the case. Second, the succesful completion of the Honors Program or partial participation will, in all likelihood, be of considerable help in obtaining employment or securing admission to graduate or professional school and winning fellowships. The transcript will show Honors participation, the letters of recommendation will certainly point out that such students have been interested enough to do work beyond basic requirements and have demonstrated superior ability. In instances whee applicants of otherwise equal qualifications are being considered, this may well be enough to tip the scale in favor of the Honors participant. In today's tight job and graduate school markets, this is no small consideration.
Enrolling in the Honors Program: History professors invite students who have demonstrated superior ability to join the program. This invitation, however, is not the only way by which one may join. Students who meet the qualifications and would be like to be considered for either full, minor, or partial participation in the Honors Program should talk to Dr. Frederick Murphy, the director the program. He will be happy to answer questions and provide admissions forms for the program.
Frequently Asked Questions About Honors:
What is the relationship between History and University Honors?
University Honors and History Honors are separate programs, with different requirements. Typically, students are enrolled in both, but this is not necessary. Any students who can meet the History Honors requirements, regardless of their major or status, may take History Honors classes. University Honors program requires separate admission from the History Honors Program. See their website for details.
When can I become an Honors History Major and how?
You can be nominated by a Faculty member or you can speak with Dr. Frederick Murphy, who directs the Honors Program in History, who will be glad to aid you.
Which courses can be taken for Honors Credit?
Only History Honors courses count towards the History Honors program. However, any History Honors course may be taken for University Honors and other History courses may be taken for University Honors credit using the Honors Augmentation available with the approval of the University Honors program.
How do I do an honors thesis?
Typically, the student identifies an honors thesis advisor in the Spring term of the Junior year and then pursues research and writing in the Senior year, leading to the completion of the honors thesis in the Spring Term, when they will be enrolled in History 499.