Honors College


Applicants do not need to apply to the Honors College separately but are automatically considered for admission to the Honors College once they have completed an application to The University of Akron.

To be admitted to the Honors College, a student must normally be enrolled as a full-time student in a bachelor’s degree program. A student may be admitted to the Honors College upon graduation from high school, upon transfer from another college or university, or following an assessment of his or her academic and career record. 

Admission to the Honors College will be offered to applicants entering from high school who provide evidence of the following:

  • High school grade-point average of 3.5 or above
  • Excellent class rank
  • Admissions test scores (ACT 27 or above or SAT ranking in the highest 10 percent nationally) 

Other applicants, whether transfer students, continuing undergraduates, or students who have been away from school for several years, are evaluated in terms of previous grades and other appropriate documented accomplishments.

Honors Curriculum

Academic Majors

An Honors College student completes the requirements for a major in one of the colleges awarding bachelor’s degrees. The student enrolls in honors classes, whenever those are available. The Honors Research Project counts as advanced coursework.

Honors Distribution

In place of The University of Akron General Education requirements (except for physical education), an Honors College student completes an individually selected set of courses to meet the Honors Distribution. With the approval of the Honors Council, the student completes a balance of coursework in the humanities, languages and the arts, social sciences, and natural sciences, enrolling in honors sections of those classes when available. The Honors Distribution consists of the following four Group requirements totaling at least 38 credits:

Group I (The Humanities)

Six or more credits in courses offered by these departments:

  • 3001: Women’s Studies
  • 3002: Pan-African Studies
  • 3200: Classical Studies
  • 3240: Archaeology (depending on the course)
  • 3400: World Civilizations
  • 3400: Humanities in the Western Tradition 
  • 3400: History
  • 3220: Latin
  • 3600: Philosophy

Group II (Languages and the Arts) 

Six credits of English Composition (Honors) and/or other English; and three or more credits from the other departments listed below:

  • 2020:222 Tech Rep Writing (with certain restrictions)
  • 3300: English
  • 3500: Arabic
  • 3500: Chinese
  • 3500: Japanese
  • 3520: French
  • 3530: German
  • 3550: Italian
  • 3570: Russian
  • 3580: Spanish
  • 7100: Art
  • 7500: Music
  • 7520: Applied Music Lessons
  • 7600: Communication
  • 7700: Sign Language
  • 7800: Theatre
  • 7900: Dance

Group III (The Social Sciences)

Six or more credits in courses offered by the departments below:

  • 3006: Institute for Life-Span/Gerontology
  • 3230: Anthropology
  • 3240: Archaeology
  • 3250: Economics
  • 3350: Geography and Planning
  • 3700: Political Science
  • 3750: Psychology
  • 3860: Sociology 

Group IV (The Natural Sciences and Mathematics)

Three or more credits in mathematics, computer science, or statistics; and six or more credits of science courses, including a lab.

  • 3010: Environmental Studies
  • 3100: Biology
  • 3150: Chemistry
  • 3230:151: Human Evolution
  • 3370: Geology
  • 3450: Mathematics (135 or higher)
  • 3460: Computer Science
  • 3470: Statistics
  • 3650: Physics

No group can be totally fulfilled with advanced placement, bypassed, or other alternate credit options. If a course the student selects is offered as an honors section, that is the section the student should take. In case of scheduling conflict, postpone until the student can schedule honors sections. Suggested courses and special cases are noted on the Honors Web page.

Honors Colloquia

All Honors College students participate in the Honors Colloquium series: Humanities in the sophomore year, social sciences in the junior year, natural sciences in the senior year. These one-semester, two-credit courses are interdisciplinary seminars open only to Honors College students.

  • 1870:250 Honors Colloquium: Humanities (during second year; during first year if majoring in Nursing or Dietetics)
  • 1870:360 Honors Colloquium: Social Sciences (during third year; during second year if majoring in Nursing or Dietetics)
  • 1870:470 Honors Colloquium: Natural Sciences (during fourth year; during third year if majoring in Nursing or Dietetics)

Honors Research Project

The Honors College student is required to complete an Honors Research Project. This capstone of the honors student’s academic and pre-professional studies begins with a choice of faculty adviser and submission of a proposal in the junior year. It is a chance to work intensively, with the guidance of a faculty sponsor, on a thesis, investigation, production, or problem of the student’s choice. In designing, completing, and reporting on their Honors Research Projects, these students have unique opportunities to apply their learning and test their abilities. Students should register for Honors Research Project course credit, totaling at least two credits.

Other Features


Students admitted to the Honors College are eligible for academic scholarships awarded by the University Honors Council, ranging from partial awards, covering part of each year’s tuition and fees, to the Lisle M. Buckingham Scholarships, which provide tuition and general fees, room and board, for up to eight semesters.


In each academic department, threre isan Honors Faculty Adviser who is available to advise Honors College students in that major, from orientation until graduation. With this Honors Faculty Adviser’s guidance, the student plans the Honors Distribution and schedules what is needed to meet departmental, college, and Honors College degree requirements. Professional Honors advisers are also available in the Honors College office to assist with general academic advisement issues, and personal and career counseling.

Priority in Registration and Residence Assignment

Honors College students are in the first group permitted to register for classes every semester. New Honors College students also have priority in residence hall assignments within the Honors residence, which also contains the Honors College offices, computer facilities, seminar, individual and group study rooms, and meeting spaces for the use of commuting Honors students.

Open Classrooms

An Honors College student, with the instructor’s permission, may attend undergraduate classes or lectures for which the student is not formally enrolled. Free access is available.

Access to Graduate Courses

With the permission of the Honors Faculty Advisor and the graduate program instructor, an Honors College student may enroll in graduate courses for either undergraduate or up to 12 credits of graduate credit.

The Honors Advisory Council

Consisting of faculty representing the colleges granting the bachelor’s degree, two Honors College students, the Director of Admissions, the Director of Student Financial Aid, and the Dean of the Honors College, the Honors Council is responsible for all decisions on admissions to the Honors College, the awarding of Honors College scholarships, the approval of each student’s Honors Distribution and Honors Research Project, and the definition of policies and procedures appropriate to the mission of the Honors College.