Honors Program

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Honors Curriculum

The Elmhurst College Honors Program consists of several academic options. To earn the Honors Program Scholar designation, students must complete 6.5 units of Honors credit (26 semester hours), with a grade of B or better, including a research component via Honors Independent Research and/or an Honors 400-level Interdisciplinary Seminar. To earn the title of Honors Program Member, students complete a minimum of 4 units of Honors credit (16 semester hours) with a grade of B or better within the Elmhurst College Honors Program. At least one of the 4 Honors courses must be at the 300/400 level. Transfer honors credit may be applied to either distinction, although at least 3 units (12 semester hours) must be completed at Elmhurst College.

The academic options are:

Honors Integrated Curriculum Courses
These seminar-style courses generally are taken one per term for the first two years of college study. All courses fulfill an Elmhurst requirement. For a listing of courses, see search for classes and select HON under Subjects.

January Term Honors Seminar
Honors Program students are encouraged to complete at least one January Term Honors elective. January Term seminars typically offer opportunities for field experiences, interactive research and to attend guest lectures. Some seminars are taught abroad.

Honors Independent Research
This course affords students, working closely with a faculty mentor, to design an original research project appropriate to their major field of study. Grant support is available. Examples include an in-depth exploration of free and fair trade options, a detailed critical analysis of Byron's poetry, a laboratory study of breast cancer cells, and an original musical score for an independent film maker. These projects must be submitted for presentation at an external scholarly venue such as a professional conference, workshop and/or an academic journal.

Honors Interdisciplinary Seminars
This team-taught interdisciplinary course challenges students to conduct serious inquiry of complex issues meriting contemporary concern. Students read and discuss course texts and then design individual research projects related to the course theme and appropriate to their major area of academic study. These projects must be submitted for presentation at an external scholarly venue such as a professional conference, workshop and/or academic journal.

Honors Intercultural Seminar
This seminar is offered in conjunction with the two intercultural lectures that are held on campus each Fall and Spring term. The focus of the course is on ethical theories and their application to contemporary problems and issues. The readings for the course are unique to each speaker and provide an orientation to both the intellectual and the concrete context of the speaker's remarks. The class meets as a seminar for text-based discussions prior to each speaker's visit. Students then have the chance to meet with each speaker prior to attending the lecture. After each speaker's visit there will be a wrap-up meeting.

Honors Service Seminar
Students conduct a scholarly investigation of service through reading and discussing varied theories and applications of service design and through participating in a semester-long service experience for a minimum of 25 service hours. Service-Learning locations appropriate to each student’s major and/or significant areas of interest are selected. Students maintain a detailed reflective journal on the service experience for the 13 weeks of site placement. At the conclusion of the course, students compose a summative, reflective essay relating the site experience to the readings and course goals.

Honors Directed Readings
This course affords Honors Program students the opportunity to participate in scholarly discussions of selected texts in small group settings with a faculty member and fellow Honors Program students. The course is conducted as three separate four-week sessions over the term, each led by a different faculty member, representing a variety of disciplines. Faculty text choices are pre-announced, allowing students to select their texts and discussion leaders. At the conclusion of each session, students write a critical response essay.

Honors Study-Abroad Courses
Any study-abroad course can be converted to an Honors course. See Dr. Mulvaney for details.

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