Honors Project Checklist
Just the thought of completing a major independent project over two school years can be daunting. But the more prep work you do upfront, the more smoothly the project itself will go.
To that end, the honors committee requires a detailed proposal before granting approval of any project. Requests for revision are very common. Here is a list of the proposal’s required elements:
- Cover letter to the honors committee.
- Proposal title page.
- An introduction, briefly stating the nature and purpose of your project and why you hope to do it. If you are doing a research project, include your thesis, the proposition that you will try to prove. If you are doing a creative project, you will generally want to show you can make, draw, construct, program, perform or design something connected with your major, or the art or profession you want to practice.
- A background or justification section. You’ll want to explain why your project will meet the requirements for a degree with distinction.
- A description of the project and its methods.
- Other required elements, including qualifications, schedule and whether IRB approval is needed.
- Working preliminary bibliography. You’ll want to demonstrate that you know what kinds of sources will be appropriate for your specific project. Be sure to check with your readers in advance about how to cite your sources appropriately for your field.
After so much work, the end is in sight. You’re getting ready to file your completed project and you want everything to be just right. Here’s a checklist to help you finalize all the details.
Cover Letter to the Honors Committee
This should be a letter, similar to the cover letter for your proposal, addressed to the Committee, c/o the Honors Coordinator, saying that you are submitting your project for the B.A. or B. S. [Honors] Degree with Distinction in _______ your major _________ for your graduation in ________Month/Year___.
Again, similar to the title page of your proposal. Spread out and centered on the page, the title page should include:
A Project Submitted in Partial Fulfillment
of the Requirements for the Degree
with distinction in _____your major_____
Submitted to the Honors Committee
A statement of about 250 words in which you summarize your main argument (for a scholarly paper) or describe your project (for a creative work). The abstract should be on a separate page, and is required for all projects.
- Scholarly paper - This should be researched, written and documented in accordance with the principles and conventions of your field, as worked out in consultation with your project readers. The thesis of your project should be stated or somehow pointed to (e.g. with a question or a statement of purpose) somewhere in the introduction to the work, often near the end of the introduction. OR
- Creative work – The nature of the work should be planned and carried out in close consultation with your readers and might include stories, poems, plays or other works of literature; paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, graphic designs, computer programs or other works of visual art or computer programming; or pieces of music. Dramatic or musical works can be presented in performance as well as in written form, but this is not required. The work should be accompanied by a journal that reflects on the development and execution of the project and your own artistic and intellectual development as you worked on it.
- For the scholarly paper, this should be a standard scholarly bibliography of works you consulted and cited in your paper, presented in the accepted format for your field.
- For the creative work, this should be an annotated list, developed in consultation with your readers, of works by other artists in your chosen form and critics who have written about this form. The annotations should give readers a sense of the influences on your work in this form.
First Reader (Project Supervisor) Approval Form
Approved and signed by your first reader, and returned to you before you submit your project to the honors committee.
Second Reader Approval Form
Approved and signed by your second reader, and returned to you before you submit your project to the honors committee.
Department Chair Approval Form
Approved and signed by your department chair, and returned to you before you submit your project to the committee. This must be submitted as a separate form, even if your chair is one of your readers.
Dominican’s Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Investigations (URSCI) promotes student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship.
Funds are available on a competitive basis to:
- Provide a summer stipend to students performing their own independent research
- Cover supplies or travel or
- Pay a stipend to students who assist faculty with the faculty member’s research.
Undergraduates in all disciplines are eligible for all three types of awards.
One of the school year’s highlights is URSCI’s Expo. This daylong event is held each April to showcase independent student research in all disciplines. Senior honors students with completed projects will be expected to present at Expo.