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Requirements for Honors Graduation

General Requirements for Honors Graduates

Students who complete all of the following requirements and who fulfill the requirements of their chosen major will graduate with either University Honors or Collegiate Honors. Students who pursue the University Honors path and complete a senior honors thesis will earn University Honors and Honors in Major, the highest honor a University of Houston student can achieve. Students who enter the Honors College while writing a senior honors thesis graduate with Membership in the Honors College with Honors in Major.

  • Achieve a 3.25 grade point average.
  • Take (on average) one Honors course each semester.
  • Complete between 21 and 36 hours of Honors coursework during the undergraduate career. Transfer students and students who enter the College after the freshman year complete approximately one third of their courses at the University of Houston for Honors credit. The number of Honors courses required for an individual student is determined by agreement between and Honors College advisor and the student.
  • If graduating with Honors in Major, complete a senior honors thesis.

Special Requirements for Honors Distinctions

University Honors with Honors in Major

For students entering the Honors College from high school, a typical 36-hour Honors curriculum comprises the following:

The Human Situation Sequence 10 credit hours
Honors American History 3 credit hours
Honors American Government 3 credit hours
Honors Social Science 3 credit hours
Honors Colloquium 3 credit hours
Honors Thesis courses (optional)* 6 credit hours
Other Honors courses (student selections)  9 credit hours

Mathematics and Science Proficiency Requirement

University Honors students must also satisfy a proficiency requirement in mathematics, by taking at least one math course at the pre-calculus level or higher, and completing at least one science lab in one of the core science courses. Neither the math class nor the science lab must be an Honors course.

* students who complete the 36-hour curriculum and meet all other requirements without writing the senior honors thesis will graduate with University Honors.

Collegiate Honors

The Collegiate Honors curriculum comprises ONE of the following:

I. Honors Coursework (curricular option)
The Human Situation: Modernity 4 credit hours
Honors Colloquium 3 credit hours
Other Honors courses (student selections)  14 credit hours


II. Completion of an Honors minor in:
Center for Creative Work 18 credit hours, including Poetics and Performance
Medicine & Society 15 credit hours, including Readings in Medicine & Society
Phronesis: A Program in Politics and Ethics  19 credit hours, including The Human Situation: Modernity

Honors in Major

Honors in Major is an additional graduation designation available to students who earn 6 hours in Senior Honors Thesis credit 3399 and 4399. When it is earned in addition to one of the designations above, "with Honors in Major" is appended to the original designation.

Membership in the Honors College with Honors in Major

Filing of Prospectus and Permission to Begin paperwork with the Office of Undergraduate Research
Honors Thesis courses 6 credit hours
Successful defense of the thesis

The Senior Honors Thesis

The senior honors thesis forms the capstone of a student's work at the University of Houston. Interested students should begin considering thesis topics and considering professors to serve as thesis directors no later than the spring semester of the student's junior year. All students should begin the process by reviewing the senior honors thesis information found on the Office of Undergraduate Research's website.