Honors College

Mission

The Honors College enhances the undergraduate experience for high-achieving students at West Virginia University by building a community of scholars who enrich their education in the classroom and beyond.

The Honors College features three academic programs: University Honors for students enrolled prior to 2017, the Honors Foundations Program for first- and second-year students, and beginning in Fall 2019 an upper-division program for upper-class students.

University Honors Requirements

Presidential Honors Scholar

  • Students admitted to WVU prior to Fall 2017
  • 3.5 grade point average
  • Twenty-five hours of Honors-eligible credit hours
  • At least one credit hour of Honors-eligible orientation (HONR 199 or eligible departmental first-year seminar)
  • Three to six credits of thesis or an approved Honors senior project, including approved study abroad, undergraduate research, or internship. Thesis hours can be used to count toward 25-hour total.

Dean’s Honors Scholar

  • Students admitted to WVU prior to Fall 2017
  • 3.4 grade point average
  • Sixteen hours of Honors-eligible credit hours
  • At least one credit hour of Honors-eligible orientation (HONR 199 or eligible departmental first-year seminar)
  • (Optional) Three to six credits of thesis or an approved Honors senior project, including approved study abroad, undergraduate research, or internship.

Students admitted to WVU prior to Fall 2017 may shift between Presidential and Dean's levels as academic performance merits.

Honors Foundations Program

Admissions Requirements

Beginning for the class entering Fall 2017, most eligible students will meet the following criteria:

  • 3.7 High School GPA (weighted or unweighted), and
  • 26 ACT or 1180 SAT (M/CR) or 1250 Redesigned SAT (M/EBRW)

The Honors College also invites a small number of students (with unusually promising application profiles that nonetheless do not meet the above criteria) to participate in an alternative application process.

Students may also join the Honors Foundations Program with a 3.7 cumulative GPA after the first semester of full-time course work with no withdrawals or incompletes, or if they transfer to WVU in good standing in an Honors program at their previous institution.

Honors Foundations Program Benefits

  • Smaller class sizes, often under 25 students;
  • Access to innovative Honors course topics;
  • Dedicated Honors housing and community activities;
  • Priority registration for classes before general population students;
  • Honors advising, tutoring, and mentoring;
  • Opportunities for peer leadership and community service;
  • Recognition at graduation and on their transcripts;
  • Connections with a community of Honors students.

Honors Foundations Program Requirements

Students will ideally complete the program within four semesters, typically taking one full Honors course per semester. In order to complete the program, students must:

  • Complete a minimum of five Honors courses (including a one-credit Honors-eligible orientation course) and a minimum of 13 Honors credits.
  • Meet ongoing requirements for good standing:
    • After year one, students must have completed an Honors-eligible orientation experience and at least one Honors course/ three Honors credits, and must maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA and a 3.0 GPA in Honors courses.
    • If a student needs to extend enrollment in the program in order to complete the requirements after year two, students must have completed an Honors-eligible orientation experience and at least three Honors courses/ nine Honors credits, and must maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA and a 3.5 GPA in Honors courses.
  • Meet appropriate final requirements, including
    • Minimum 3.5 GPA in Honors credits
    • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA at the time of program completion
    • Participation in the Honors exit interview process

Upper Division Honors Program

Beginning in Spring 2019, juniors and seniors may apply to join the Honors College upper-division program. The upper-division program is rooted in experiential learning and will require students to submit a proposal that will be evaluated for admission.

Students in the program will complete three or more Honors credits every semester, a minimum of six of which must involve experiential learning (study abroad, research, internships, etc.). Details about the program and the admission process will be announced in advance of the initial Spring 2019 proposal cycle.

For more information, please contact the Honors Office. Students may also visit the website at https://www.honors.wvu.edu.

HONR 101. Honors Hall Council. 1 Hour.

An introduction to the process of planning and implementing community activities. Students produce a proposal, complete with a budget for an activity, which is evaluated by their peers. Students read and discuss articles on Leadership that frame their performance and interactions in an academic context.

HONR 189. Career Exploration Internship. 1-3 Hours.

(May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit hours.) Guided career exploration through introductory experiential learning by shadowing professionals at one or more placement site.

HONR 199. Orientation to Honors. 1 Hour.

Orientation to degree programs and requirements, departmental resources, curriculum options, student responsibilities and opportunities.

HONR 200. Peer Mentoring. 3 Hours.

PR: Students must be in good academic standing with the Honors College to enroll in this course. This course is designed to develop mentors who will lead HONR 199. This course will focus on strategies and tactics used by successful university instructors, practice of these techniques, and the production of materials.

HONR 201. Peer Tutoring. 2 Hours.

PR: Students must be Honors College members in good academic standing. This course is a forum for the exchange of ideas and an environment where tutors learn effective tutoring strategies.

HONR 202. Science and Technology. 3 Hours.

An introduction to the systematic methods of analysis to scientific developments, technological advancements, and our evolving natural world through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 203. Honors Mathematics and Quantitative Skills. 3 Hours.

An introduction to mathematics and quantitative techniques and practical application of numerical, symbolic, or spatial concepts through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 204. Society and Connections. 3 Hours.

An introduction to analysis of human behavior, societal and political organization, or communication through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 205. Human Inquiry and the Past. 3 Hours.

An introduction to the humanistic study of historical, philosophical, and spiritual inquiry through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 206. Arts and Creativity. 3 Hours.

An introduction to the study of artistic expression through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 207. Global Studies and Diversity. 3 Hours.

An introduction to methods and principles of critical inquiry to explore global issues and cultural, linguistic, or experiential diversity through focused, engaging subjects.

HONR 210. City-As-Text-Morgantown. 3 Hours.

National Collegiate Honors Council's framework City-As-Text uses Morgantown as the basis for an interactive course which uses primary document and physical structures to investigate the historical, political, cultural and social aspects of place.

HONR 213. Growing Up in America. 3 Hours.

Students in this course explore the how the issues of gender, race/ethnicity, social class, time period, and location shaped cultural understandings of the child and a child's experience as a child throughout American history.

HONR 215. Confronting Pseudoscience. 3 Hours.

Using the tools of evidential reasoning and critical thinking this course examines the difference between a true scientific endeavor and pseudoscientific belief systems.

HONR 220. Speech Writing. 3 Hours.

A workshop seminar with the objective to develop and practice speech writing and presentation skills. The focus is on formal, manuscript speeches, with carefully crafted language, organization, flow, and delivery.

HONR 285. Summer Guided Reading. 3 Hours.

Students will explore various reading topics. They will be required to complete assigned readings and submit review papers on the readings.

HONR 293. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HONR 297. Research. 1-6 Hours.

Independent research projects.

HONR 298. Honors. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Students in Honors Program and consent by the honors director. Independent reading, study, or research.

HONR 301. Advanced Peer Tutoring. 1,2 Hour.

PR: Students must be members of the Honors College in good academic standing and have completed HONR 201. (May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit hours.) This course is designed as a forum for the exchange of ideas and an environment where advanced peer tutors can learn and discuss effective strategies for helping their University peers study various subjects.

HONR 393. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HONR 401. Peer Leadership Practicum. 1,2 Hour.

PR: Students must be members of the Honors College in good academic standing and have completed HONR 201 and HONR 301. (May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit hours. This course is designed as a forum for the exchange of ideas and an environment where advanced peer tutors can learn and discuss effective strategies for helping their University peers study various subjects.

HONR 402. Foundations of Peer Mentoring. 3 Hours.

PR: Students must be in good academic standing with the Honors College to enroll in this course. This course is designed to develop mentors who will lead HONR 199. This course will focus on strategies and tactics used by successful university instructors, practice of these techniques, and the production of materials.

HONR 412. The Salem Witch Trials. 3 Hours.

The Salem Witch Trials are one of the iconic events of American History. This class examines the trials themselves and their interpretations in scholarly works, art, drama and film, poetry and other media.

HONR 490. Teaching Practicum. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Teaching practice as a tutor or assistant.

HONR 491. Professional Field Experience. 1-9 Hours.

PR: Consent. (May be repeated up to a maximum of 9 hours.) Prearranged experiential learning program, to be planned, supervised, and evaluated for credit by faculty and field supervisors. Involves temporary placement with public or private enterprise for professional competence development.

HONR 493. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

HONR 494. Seminar. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Presentation and discussion of topics of mutual concern to students and faculty.

HONR 495. Independent Study. 1-6 Hours.

Faculty supervised study of topics not available through regular course offerings.

HONR 496. Senior Thesis. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent.

HONR 497. Research. 1-6 Hours.

Independent research projects.

HONR 498. Honors. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Students in Honors Program and consent by the honors director. Independent reading, study or research.


Administration

Dean

  • Kenneth P. Blemings - Ph.D.
    University of Wisconsin

Associate Dean

  • Ryan Claycomb - Ph.D.
    University of Maryland, College Park

Program Coordinator

  • Ashley Watts - MS
    West Virginia University

Director Honors Live/Learn Community

  • Kevin Gooding - Ph.D.
    Purdue University