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Honors Program Overview

students at easels in drawing class

Students can participate in the Honors Program in two ways: by joining Commonwealth Honors or Departmental Honors.

Commonwealth Honors runs throughout a student’s undergraduate career, while Departmental Honors takes place in the last two years. Commonwealth Honors students complete two phases—H1 (honors core courses) and H2 (Departmental Honors)—although students can choose to pursue Departmental Honors (H2) only. 

Transfer students can participate in either program. Whether you were part of another Honors Program or have received your associate’s degree and would like to participate as a junior, we can help you determine which path is right for you.
 

Commonwealth Honors

Want to be an honors student from the time you step foot on campus to your graduation ceremony? Then the Commonwealth Honors program is for you.

  • As a Commonwealth Honors student, you’ll earn 21 honors credits that count toward graduation.
  • You can choose among a rich variety of honors courses that are offered each semester in nearly every field of study, from Art by Brave Women in 1950s NYC, to Latinx Literature, Medical Ethics, and Sustainable Practices Connecting the Environment, Economics & Social Justice.
  • You’ll transition into Departmental Honors during your junior year, where you’ll complete honors contracts and an honors thesis on topics of your choice.

Departmental Honors

Interested in pursuing honors in your major? Once you complete your core courses, you can join Departmental Honors where you’ll take honors credits in your field of study.

  • Departmental Honors students earn 9 honors credits during their junior and senior years.
  • Honors credits are earned by completing an honors thesis (a culminating research or creative project) and honors contract (an independent project you complete in a 300- or 400-level course).
  • Students pursuing Departmental Honors enjoy the same benefits as Commonwealth Honors students.

The culmination of the Honors Program is your honors thesis, a research or creative project of your choice. You have the invaluable opportunity to work with a faculty mentor on your thesis project over a semester or a year.

Students frequently say the honors thesis was their most rewarding experience at BSU. They appreciate the one-on-one mentoring, immersing themselves in an area of study they love and producing an exemplary sample of their work for competitive job opportunities or graduate school.