Missouri State University

Honors College

Departmental Honors

You can graduate with honors by completing twelve credit hours of honors coursework in your major. It is an enriching experience that can give you a competitive edge when you make application for prestigious fellowships and awards or apply to graduate school.  Completion of departmental honors is NOT required for graduation from the Honors College.

Students wishing to graduate with honors in their major should do the following:

  • Have a clear career goal.  Do you wish to go on to graduate school or into the job market? Are you hoping to earn a distinguished award or fellowship?
  • Determine your specific areas of interest so that you have a focus for your honors classes in your major and your senior project.  For example, an English major might wish to focus on 19th century English literature or the collected works of a particular poet.
  • Meet with your academic advisor to discuss your plan.  Also meet with, in turn, faculty members who will oversee your departmental honors work, including your senior project.
  • Obtain the necessary forms for the coursework and senior project from the Honors College Office.  Get the necessary signatures of approval from your advisor, faculty members involved, and department head and return the form to the Honors College for the signature of the Director.

Departmental Honors Requirements

  • Students must complete General Honors before completing Departmental Distinction.
  • Must take at least 12 hours of departmental honors offerings, which include a senior project. These departmental honors offerings may take the two following forms:
    • Honors sections: special sections of existing courses open primarily to honors students.
    • Honors components: one semester hour added to a regular course or section to recognize honors work (e.g., ART 372, 3 semester hours, becomes ART 372, 4 semester hours).
    • An existing upper level course in the major that lends itself to a senior project (e.g., senior seminars; research seminars) 
  • Senior Project
    • May carry no less than 3 and no more than 9 semester hours of credit.
    • May be started no earlier than first semester of junior year, and must be completed before graduation.
    • Must create a typed proposal to be approved by project advisor, department head, and Director of Honors College.
    • The content of the project is determined by the honors student in consultation with a faculty member serving as project advisor, and is approved by the Director. The Honors College may provide students the opportunity to publish or otherwise present their projects.

Diplomas and transcripts of those students who complete both general honors and departmental distinction will read "Bachelor of ______ (with possible grade point honors) in the Honors College with Distinction in _______ (major)."

The senior honors project might be taken on a Pass/Not Pass basis upon recommendation of the department and approval of the Director of the Honors College.

Forms and Information Sheets

Departmental Honors Overview

Proposal Overview

Component Proposal Form

Departmental Honors Funding Request Form

Packet with Information on Senior Honors Project