FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions about the University Honors Program

  • Small, discussion-based courses designed to challenge motivated students. Honors courses emphasize active participation, which is especially rewarding in a class full of high-achieving students
  • Connections with professors, classmates, and mentors. Due to small class sizes and project-based learning, Honors professors often become advisors, while classmates become lifelong friends.
  • Access to special Honors programming, from social events to informative workshops and world-class lectures
  • Priority placement in Hubbard Hall
  • Honors Program advising to supplement major advising
  • Challenging opportunities inside and outside the classroom that help you learn, grow, and build your future self.

Does Honors affect my financial aid?

Generally, no. There is no cost and no direct financial advantage to Honors Program membership. Exceptions are the Hamel Scholarship and Governor's Success Scholarship, both of which require active participation in the Honors Program. The Presidential, Dean's, and Director's Scholarships do not require Honors Program participation. 

The Honors Program does manage a number of funds that distribute small scholarships annually. Students are invited to apply for these scholarships beginning in the Sophomore year. Learn More

Generally, yes. Honors courses are designed to challenge motivated, high-achieving students. However, this doesn't necessarily mean more pages of reading or writing. Honors professors design courses to go into greater depth, allow students to follow their own interests, and find connections to the world outside the classroom. Students report that Honors courses challenge them to think more deeply and creatively, and that while they are sometimes difficult, the difficulty is outweighed by their interest in the courses. Grade in Honors courses tend to be at least as high as grades in other courses; taking Honors courses is not likely to harm your GPA.

  • 4 Honors Discovery courses (16 credits), including one Honors Inquiry Seminar and one Honors Symposium. Students entering UNH before 2016 do not need to complete an Honors Symposium. These courses also fulfill University Discovery requirements.
  • Honors-in-Major coursework, according to department’s specific guidelines, OR Interdisciplinary Honors
  • An Honors Thesis

Students who are not able to complete the Discovery portion of the Honors Program may pursue Honors in Major alone, earning Departmental rather than University Honors.

No. You must complete your Honors requirements by the time you graduate, but there is no required schedule for completing Honors work. Most students take Discovery Honors courses in their first two years; Honors in Major and Interdisciplinary Honors work usually begins in the Junior year. You are welcome to take more than one Honors course in a semester.

The Honors Inquiry Seminar is a small, discussion-based course, centered on a special topic, designed to be interactive and research-oriented. The faculty are drawn from amongst the finest teachers in the university. The course size, which is capped at twenty students from across the five colleges, allows for a lively forum in which to express your views and develop new interests. Seminar students develop close relationships with each other, and with the faculty teaching them.

Each semester we offer a new group of seminars in which timely special topics cover a wide range of disciplines.  All carry the course number 444. When you see one that interests you—take it!  It may not come around again.

In order to develop a strong sense of UNH as a community of learners, we strongly encourage you to take the honors seminar in your first year. Seminar list

Honors Symposia are a new model of Honors course, debuting in 2015. Each Honors Symposium is made up of four or five small seminars, united by a common theme: global health or racial justice, for instance. Each contributing seminar approaches the theme from a different angle, using the tools of a particular discipline. Several times during the semester, the seminars join together for a plenary session, in which the large group of students shares in a common academic experience. The Symposia combine the intimate, participatory format of the small seminar with a larger intellectual community in which perspectives are shared. Each Symposium course has the course number 440. Symposium List

No, since most Honors courses fulfill general education/discovery category requirements. That is, Honors classes are taken in place of rather than in addition to the normal courseload.

You must achieve a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50 in order to graduate with a University Honors designation. Freshmen are required to have a cumulative GPA of 3.2 after the Spring semester. All other students must have a GPA of 3.5, which is checked each June. Students who fall below this mark may petition to extend their time in the program while they improve their grades. Students entering UNH before 2016 must meet a GPA threshold of 3.4.

Individual Honors-in-Major programs may set their own minimum cumulative GPA's. Please see departmental information.

 

Yes, we encourage students to study abroad! We offer a special honors exchange with University College at Utrecht in the Netherlands, where you can meet Honors requirements with the courses you take. Experience at other Study Abroad institutions can be counted toward Interdisciplinary Honors.  

Many Honors students choose to complete more than one curriculum at UNH. Because Honors requirements are designed to overlap with Discovery and major requirements, it is usually not a problem to complete Honors as well as multiple majors and/or minors, though scheduling courses may become more difficult. Students usually choose one major in which to complete Honors.