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Program Requirements

Honors Core + General Studies, Departmental, and Co-Curricular Honors Options

 

Admission CriteriaHonors students walking at the Spring 2016 commencement graduation ceremony

  • Cumulative GPA of 3.3 or above (high school, transfer or current MSU Denver GPA)
  • ACT of 24 or above
  • SAT of 1160 or above

Good Standing

To graduate with MSU Denver Honors Program distinction, each student completes Honors coursework and an Honors thesis, and maintains a 3.3 undergraduate GPA.

Requirements

The Honors Program curriculum requires 21 units of approved courses and activities. Each student is able to design their own path through the Honors curriculum by completing the Honors core courses and combining a selection of academic and co-curricular options.


MSU Denver will be moving to a mostly online schedule for Fall 2020. All HON-prefix courses that were previously scheduled to be held on campus will now be delivered online.

Synchronous courses (SYNCH) involve “real-time” learning in which faculty meet virtually with students at set times using video conferencing software like TEAMS or ZOOM. Classes will meet during the time frame listed in the schedule. While some faculty are opting to meet only once a week or periodically for group activities, please reserve those time blocks just as you would for an on-campus course. 

See Honors Fall 2020 Course Descriptions for a list of the Fall 2020 HON-prefix courses with detailed information about course delivery and a note from the instructor.


Honors General Studies Options

Honors students can select from general studies options to complete academic course requirements. Many of these options can also fulfill degree program and university requirements. 


Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course teaches students how to design and deliver effective, ethical presentations. The ability to adapt to different audiences and contexts - such as professional or public situations - is emphasized. The course provides instruction on and practice of organization, delivery and performance, technology, and research skills. Students also learn effective listening techniques and critical thinking skills. The course empowers students to become successful professional presenters and public speakers.

General Studies: Oral Communication 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of the fundamental concepts of human nutrition, including digestion, absorption, metabolism, and the function of nutrients as they relate to human health and disease.

General Studies: Natural and Physical Sciences

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: In this interdisciplinary course, students learn about how grand narratives have shaped and transformed notions of subjectivity over time, from the ancient and/or medieval world through the present day. The focus is on works that have had a literary, philosophical, and artistic impact on the notion of the self. The goal is to comprehend significant changes over time in the relationship between the individual and the world. Students are encouraged to make thematic connections across disciplines.

Note: B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: Arts and Humanities

Honors Core Courses

Core courses taken by all honors students include 2 interdisciplinary Honors Colloquia as well as the Senior Honors Thesis, an independent research and/or creative project normally completed during the senior year. The Senior Honors Thesis can also be completed in conjunction with degree program requirements. 


Students must chose one (1) class (3 hrs. required)

 

ENG 3525 Professional and Scholarly Writing 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Junior-level standing, or permission of the instructor

Catalog Description: Students explore the expectations that shape scholarly writing in their various disciplines and employ the correct forms, interpret and synthesize the literature, and presentment of their researched writing to various audiences. Students draw on research appropriate for discipline-specific publications and/or conference presentations. During this course, students learn to transform their work into publishable articles with the guidance of instructor feedback and peer review.

General Studies: Written Communication

 

CAS 3910 Advanced Public Speaking 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): CAS 1010 or CAS 1090 or CAS 1710 or HON 1013 or Permission of Instructor

Catalog Description: This course prepares students to design and deliver technical and/or professional presentations with an advanced level of skill. Students select one course project or theme and develop several presentations for different audiences and settings-these include: academic conferences and/or technical presentations to professional associations, public presentations on complex topics, and research poster sessions or business expos. This course is useful for students who plan to earn graduate degrees or seek employment in positions that require communication of complex information.

 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): C or better in ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Enrollment in the Honors Program.

Catalog Description: This variable topics course provides students with the opportunity to examine historical and/or contemporary issues from interdisciplinary perspectives. Course activities will include relevant readings from a variety of perspectives and disciplines, discussions encouraging synthesis and analysis of conflicting or competing views, and written assignments. B- or better required for Honors Credit

Note: This course may be repeated under different topics for a maximum of 9 credits

 

Fall 2020 Colloquium Offerings

HON 391S - Freedom and Sin at the Cinema

Description: This colloquium explores major topics and questions in moral psychology through the lens of the classic Hollywood epics of the 1950’s and 1960’s. Topics will include: the limits of human freedom and responsibility;
HON-prefix courses offered in Fall 2020 MSU Denver Honors Program
competing conceptions of virtue and goodness; the nature and diversity of human error; the relationship between desire and evil; etc.

 

HON 39AC - Exploring Community Engagement

Description: In this seminar, we will explore the importance of place and identity as we discuss Sabrina & Corina (Penguin Random House, 2019), a book of short stories by Kali Fajardo-Anstine, an MSU Denver alumna (English, 2009)! Fajardo-Anstine sets her stories generally in the American West, more specifically in Denver, and sometimes even here on the Auraria Campus.

 

HON 39AD - Being with Others

Description: This colloquium focuses on the complex nature of our social lives. We will evaluate similarities and differences between sociality as experienced from an intimate, first-person point of view and sociality from the more removed vantage point of data sets that reveal ideas to us about our collective and plural experience of life.

Credits: 1

Prerequisite(s): C or better in ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Junior or Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director

Catalog Description: This course is to be taken prior to the Senior Honors Thesis (HON 4950) and is only open to Honors students. This course familiarizes students with project organization and the scope and proper format of an undergraduate thesis project. Each student will develop: a thesis statement, a project outline, an initial bibliography, and a working abstract. Each student will also identify a primary Thesis Advisor for the project. The Thesis Advisor is a faculty member with expertise in a discipline closely related to the topic of the thesis project. This course must be completed with a B- or better in order to advance to the Senior Honors Thesis. 

 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): HON 4948 with a B- or better, Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director, approval from student's department/degree program if taken in place of Departmental Senior Experience course. 

Catalog Description: The Senior Honors Thesis is the culmination of the Honors undergraduate experience allowing students to synthesize learning using critical analysis and logical thinking. In this course, students complete an independent research and/or creative project under the direction of a primary Thesis Advisor and the Honors Director. The Thesis Advisor is a faculty member with expertise in a discipline closely related to the topic of the thesis project. Students submit a written thesis and deliver a public oral presentation of their work. This course must be completed with a B- or better in order to count for Honors credit.

Note: Students are required to receive approval from their department chair if this course is taken in place of a departmental Senior Experience course. 

Credits: 1

Prerequisite(s): HON 4948 with a B- or better, Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director, approval from student's department/degree program

Catalog Description: This course must be taken in conjunction with a departmental Senior Experience, capstone, or advanced research course.

Note: Students are required to receive approval from their department chair if this course is taken in place of a departmental Senior Experience course. 

Departmental Honors Options

Students can earn credit toward Honors Program completion by demonstrating high achievement in a wide variety of courses offered through academic departments.


Up to 6 optional hours.

Honors students earn up to six hours of honors credit by demonstrating high achievement in select courses from across all academic departments.

Experiential Learning

Up to 6 optional hours

These opportunities may be offered in partnership with academic departments, the Applied Learning Center, and/or Study Abroad.

In order to receive Experiential Learning credit towards Honors, students must write a reflection based on either the Long or the Short Experiential Learning prompt found here


 

Honors students may earn up to 6 optional hours from a study abroad experience.

Please visit MSU Denver's study abroad portal for more information.

 

Students can participate in an internship for up to six optional hours towards honors completion. 

Co-Curricular Honors Options

Students also have the option to acquire hours toward the completion of the Honors Program by participating in a variety of co-curricular options

Maximum of 8 non-credit-bearing units


Serve as an officer in the Honors Student Council

Up to 3 optional units for year-long service

  • Serve as student representative for the Honors Program and Honors Council
  • Plan and execute a number of engaging events designed to promote thinking in our communities

Up to 3 optional units

  • Participate in D-phi related events
  • Participate in events organized and/or approved by the Student Honors Council
  • Participate in the RMHC yearly event (1 unit/year)
  • And more!
  • 4 activities = 1 unit

Present undergraduate research at an academic conference

Up to 3 optional units, 1 unit/conference

  • Students should work with the Honors Program advisor and Student Travel to plan travel
  • Present at Western Regional Honors Conference (WRHC), yearly event 
  • Present at National Collegiate Honors Conference (NCHC), yearly event
  • Present at a discipline-specific conference

Up to 6 optional units, 1.5 units/semester.

Serve as:

  • Student tutor
  • Supplemental Instruction Leader
  • Peer Ambassador
  • TA or RA
  • Writing Center Student Employee
  • New Student Orientation Student Employee
  • MET Report Student Employee
  • MET Media Student Employee
  • Many of these options are also paid positions
  • These opportunities are offered in partnership with Student Academic Success, First Year Success, Individualized Degree Programs, and through certain academic departments
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