Frequently Asked Questions
How does a student get into the Honors Program?
For students entering NDSU from high school, the admission criteria include ACT score of 28+ and a cumulative GPA of 3.5+. All students entering NDSU who meet this criteria will be invited to participate in the Honors Program for their first year.
What are Honors Courses?
Honors courses are based on a colloquium or seminar model which promotes student-centered discussion and the development of analytical and communications skills which will be an asset no matter what your major may be. The goal of the faculty in honors courses is to help students sharpen their perception and learn how to ask good questions, and then to seek their own answers based on an understanding of the ways different fields of study and different cultures address important issues and problems.
What are the Requirements of the Program?
Students must complete the four components of the program: interdisciplinary coursework; research and creative activity; experiential learning; leadership development.
What courses will I take in my first year?
All incoming Honors students will take HON 191 in their first semester. This is a series of three courses. Each course is 1 credit and lasts for five weeks. The first section is an introduction to the program led by the Honors Program Coordinator. The next two 5 week sections are seminars taught by faculty from across campus.
In their spring semester, Honors students will take HON 193. This is a project-based learning course. Guided by a faculty mentor, students will complete a project in a team and present their finding at the end of the semester.
Are honors courses more difficult than others?
Students in honors courses are not necessarily expected to do more work but to do work of a different nature. Honors classes are designed to provide a qualitatively different experience from that in regular university course work. Because they are interdisciplinary, and sometimes team-taught (you may have faculty from Math, Biology, and Religion & History all teaching in a single course), they challenge students to think at a more complex level about issues and ideas, to be more independent and creative in their approach to understanding.
Who teaches honors courses?
Experienced faculty members whose proposal for an honors class has been reviewed and accepted by the Honors Council. No honors courses are taught by graduate assistants. Faculty members from any discipline may submit a proposal to teach a second or third-year colloquium. Because the classes are small, never more than 20 students, and are based on a seminar approach, senior faculty find this an attractive way to teach something they are really passionate about to a small group of motivated students.
Can Honors courses fulfill general education requirements?
300 level Honors courses can be taken to fulfill general education requirements. The exact designation will depend on the course being taught. In addition, Honors students will complete their upper-division writing requirement in HON 491: Junior Seminar.