Faculty FAQ

An Honors Designation means that a student will pursue Honors-level work within a general-level course. This doesn't necessarily mean they will read or write more pages; instead, the student should be engaging with the course material in greater depth and with more sophistication. This might mean using primary texts instead of secondary texts, presenting material to the class, etc. For the best outcomes, students and professors should discuss what projects and expectations will best suit the students' academic path. Faculty may always use their discretion when deciding whether or not to sponsor an Honors Designation. Please see our Honors Designation page for more information about the designation process.

Designating a course as Honors creates a separate section in the eyes of the registration system. This means that the student is dropped from the non-Honors course. The instructor needs to link the courses together. The UNH IT Knowledge Base has instructions.

We always welcome new Honors courses. If you would like to teach one, you should begin by consulting with your department chair. If he or she approves, contact the Honors Program with your proposal.

For the most part, Honors courses are part of the Discovery Program, and require approval by the Discovery Committee. They usually have lower caps than general-level courses (usually 20-30 students). They hold students to higher expectation than ordinary courses, and should be conducted in a highly participatory way (e.g. discussions rather than lectures). For more information about forms of Honors Discovery courses, visit our Honors in Discovery page.

Honors courses may also be created at the upper level to serve Honors in Major students. This is relatively rare, as few majors have enough Honors students to fill a section. However, it may be feasible in cases where a single course serves multiple majors (such as GEN 604H, Principles of Genetics), or for general skills and topics (such as research methods or thesis prep).

Honors Symposia are groups of classes that share a common theme. They are not team-taught, and each course runs independently, but the faculty in the Symposium collaborate to design shared experiences, including regular Plenary Sessions in which all of the courses meet together. The purpose is to demonstrate how different disciplines approach common topics in different and related ways, and how new knowledge and understanding can come from sharing and comparing these approaches. 

Please contact us if you would like to propose an Honors Symposium.

At present, we are not offering course development funds, and Honors teaching is typically done as part of established workload, with no extra pay. However, the Honors Program offers course enrichment funds of up to $500 per course, which can be used for field trips, speakers, meals, or other expenses. The University Honors Program does not require a formal proposal for use of these funds. The procedure is to email Kate Gaudet (kate.gaudet@unh.edu), Associate Director of the UHP, with plans for using the funds, so that the UHP can be informed in advance. Faculty should then send itemized receipts to Kate for reimbursement.

Please contact us with any questions.

The Honors Thesis usually counts for the capstone experience. While capstones may take different forms, like internships or designated courses, the Honors Thesis must involved sustained independent research under the supervision of a faculty advisor, and must produce a significant written paper in accordance with disciplinary standards. The Honors Thesis also requires a public presentation (usually a poster or oral presentation at the Undergraduate Research Conference). Read more on our Honors Thesis page.

Honors Liaisons have primary responsibility for the Honors curriculum in their major. The University Honors Program offers oversight and assistance.

Honors Liaisons recruit students for Honors in Major, offer guidance about curriculum, ensure that program information is available and up to date, certify Honors Designations, and certify completion of the program for graduating students. If you are an Honors Liaison, you have access to a Box folder that includes more information, as well as lists of Honors-eligible students. There is also a discussion forum for Liaisons in Canvas (in the Honors Faculty and Liaisons course).

There are multiple ways to participate in Honors. The first is to be a member of the University Honors Program, which is invitation-only. To see how students are invited, and for information about nominating a student, visit our Honors Program Admission page. Generally, students begin the University Honors Program in their first year. Once they have completed most of their Discovery requirements, they are more likely to complete Departmental Honors.

Students generally begin Departmental Honors in the Junior year. Unlike University Honors, there is no invitation required. The requirements and processes to join vary by major. Students should contact their major's Honors Liaison to discuss joining Honors in Major.

See a list of liaisons and requirements here.