Honors Requirements & Eligibility

The Honors Program is open to full-time students with a record of high academic achievement.

Incoming full-time students may be invited to participate in the Honors Program if they:

  • Rank in the upper 10 percent of their graduating class,
  • Earned high ACT/SAT scores and
  • Completed honors or advanced placement classes in high school.

Freshmen are invited by letter to join the Honors Program well before arriving on campus so that they have time to plan their academic schedules accordingly and enroll in an appropriate freshman honors seminar.

Entering the Program.
The Honors degree program is open to full-time students of superior ability. The Honors Committee sets the standards for admission to the program, annually reviews the progress of the students in the program, and recommends the awarding of the degree of Bachelor of Arts With Honors or Bachelor of Science With Honors. Interested students should consult the director of the Honors Program for current-year policies and guidelines.

All students intending to pursue an Honors degree must complete the following requirements:

1. Complete four honors seminars including the honors freshman seminar.

Honors students will complete the honors seminars to fulfill the liberal arts and sciences core curriculum seminars requirement. While the form and substance of the honors seminars are subject to approval and change by the Honors Committee, current seminar topics are:

For more detailed information, students should consult the current list of honors seminars.

Exemption from the honors freshman seminar for students admitted to the Honors Program in their sophomore year or acceptance of honors course work at another institution in place of the freshman and/or sophomore honors seminars is possible with the written approval of the honors director.

Honors students who follow a full-year study abroad or other academic off-campus program may choose to take the seminar missed that year or to read the common text(s) of that seminar, write a paper about the text on a subject proposed by the Honors committee, and give a presentation to the Dominican University community on the academic and cultural elements of their study abroad experience.

2. Dominican Community Hours

All Mazzuchelli Scholars must engage in at least ten Dominican Community events over the course of the academic year. Several events will be recommended by the directors, but students are also welcome to suggest events for consideration. A few events, such as the Founder’s Day dinner and the annual Lund Gill lecture are required for every Honors student. Students will be expected to keep track of those events by submitting a short assessment of the event through the “assignment” tab on the Honors Canvas page or through “EngageDu.”

3. Maintain a designated G.P.A.

A cumulative grade point average of 3.30 and a grade point average of 3.00 in all honors seminars are required for continued participation in the program.

4. Complete one of the following paths:

Honors through course work. This path has the following requirements in addition to the honors seminars:

  • Four courses designated as honors OR
  • Three courses designated as honors and one study abroad course OR
  • Two courses designated as honors and language through the intermediate level

Honors through a project. The requirements for this path are:

  • Good standing in the Honors Program and the completion of an honors project, which is a substantial, independent distinction project approved by the Honors Committee—distinction projects are detailed below.
  • Students in this path are required to complete the honors seminars but are not required to take other honors courses.

Honors Through Project / Bachelor with Distinction

Students not in the Honors Program may elect to pursue a degree of Bachelor of Arts with Distinction or Bachelor of Science with Distinction by completing a Distinction project. This project is designed to give such students in their junior and senior years the opportunity to complete a distinctive and substantial scholarly or creative work in their major field.

Students who accept this challenge are awarded the degree of Bachelor of Arts with Distinction or Bachelor of Science with Distinction on the recommendation of the Honors committee and upon completion of the distinction project.

All students intending to pursue an honors project or a distinction project must complete the following requirements:

1. Declaring Intent and Finding Readers

Generally, students pursuing the degree with distinction begin working on the project in the first semester of their junior year. The faculty in the discipline approves the project, and the student’s first and second readers recommend the project to the Honors Committee in early March.

A project in an interdisciplinary major or one that is interdisciplinary in emphasis is submitted with prior approval from faculty from the most relevant disciplines. A student majoring in a discipline in which Dominican has only one full-time faculty member should seek approval of both project and proposal from a second faculty member who is a member of the major department or from a related discipline in another department, whichever is more appropriate for the project.

2. GPA

Students must meet the following requirements to be eligible:

  • Junior status
  • Cumulative GPA of 3.30 or higher in the field of the distinction project
  • Overall GPA of 3.30 or higher

3. Coursework

If the student’s proposal is accepted, the student must take ENGL 345 - Advanced Academic Writing as a part of the project. The course instructor may exempt a student from this requirement at his or her discretion.

4. Public presentation

After the final draft is approved, the student will be required to give a public presentation on his or her project. Most honors students display their projects or discuss them at Dominican’s URSCI Expo, held each April on campus. View examples.

Other Information

Deadlines and guides for writing a distinction proposal and project guides for both students and faculty mentors are available from the honors director.

Students who decide not to complete their project must send a statement of their reasons to the Honors Committee. Students who do not make satisfactory progress may be required by the Honors Committee to withdraw their project.

Additional information regarding both the honors and distinction programs is available from the honors directors, or from the Academic Advising Office.