Honors Program

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Professional Staff: Dr. Matt Decker

The Honors Program at Ohio Christian University is planned to prepare students for graduate studies. The honors program enhances the undergraduate educational experience of students who have demonstrated high academic proficiency throughout high school or through their first year of college. The program consists of learning activities and curriculum that engages students in advanced levels of research that challenge them to explore new ideas and concepts. It provides an avenue for students to develop communication and writing skills, develop critical thinking skills, and improve their ability to integrate faith and learning in their professional field. The curriculum and activities are interrelated in nature and encourages conversation between liberal art classes, the Bible, and the student's professional field.

All students graduating from the University's Honors Program must complete 10-14 hours of honors course work. Honors graduates are recognized at graduation and receive a special certificate and honors medallion. Completion of the Honors Program is also noted on transcripts.

The Honors Program consists of four basic areas:

  • Honors General Education classes
  • Honors Bible classes
  • Honors Professional Field classes
  • Senior Honors Proposal and Project

Effort is made to assure there is no or at least minimal additional financial obligation required of students in the program. When participation in the program puts the student in tuition overload, the additional fee for overload hours for honors classes is waived. The cost for the senior project is underwritten by the program including materials, copying and binding of the project, or other associated costs.

 

Honors Seminars Requirement

The Honors Program requires the completion of five general education honors classes, two honors Bible classes, and one professional field honors class. An additional honors syllabus/contract is required in these honors classes. It is the responsibility of the student to approach the instructor with a proposed idea of what he/she will do for the honors segment of the course. The object is to simply not do more work, but rather to do advanced work in the subject area. Honors contracts require the signatures of the students, the overseeing faculty member, and the Honors Program Director. This contract along with the student's seminar project is filed in the student's honors portfolio.

The facet of the program allows Honor Scholars to do advanced work by including unique objectives, challenging assignments, and extraordinary evaluative tools to their general education, Bible and major field courses. The student is responsible for keeping on schedule to meet each of the syllabus/contract requirements. If the syllabus/contract is fulfilled to the satisfaction of the overseeing faculty member and Honors Program Director, the honors student receives honors credit for the course.

Honors Colloquiums

At the beginning of each semester all honors students are required to attend an honors colloquium. The colloquium provides the opportunity for the Director to discuss the program with honors students. At these colloquiums selected upper class honors students may discuss their honors projects including how they selected and prepared project proposals and the insights garnered from this experience.

Honors Proposals

At the beginning of their junior year, honors students are enrolled in a project proposal seminar. This seminar is planned to assist honors students with preparing their project proposals. Students must submit their project proposal at the end of the class.

Senior Honors Project

The honors capstone project may be completed during the junior or senior year. This project provides the scholar with the opportunity to explore a topic within his/her major field of study. Projects may be varied and include research, development, application, or creative works. Specific requirements with respect to the type of work, the format of the project report, and other details are determined by the student's area of concentration and proposal. Each student, with assistance from a mentor professor, conducts research in his/her major or approved research field and communicates those findings in an honors project.

The Senior Honors Project is completed as an independent study, under the direction of a mentoring faculty member, and must include a substantial written report, similar to an undergraduate thesis. The Senior Honors Project contract requires the signatures of the student, mentoring faculty, and Honors Program Director. A three-five hour project is required.

Summary

Required Courses:
Honors General Education Classes 2-5
Honors Bible Classes 2
Honors Major Class 1
Proposal Writing 1
Senior Honors Project 3-5
Total 10-14 Hours

Honors Program Requirements for Students Admitted Their First Year

Honors English Composition I 1 must include research skills
Honors English Composition II 1 must include research/writing skills
Honors Introduction to Sociology 1 must include research techniques
Honors History Elective from required history course 1 must include historiography
Honors Introduction to Literature 1 must include critical analysis
Honors Pentateuch 1 must include biblical integration into liberal studies
Honors Gospels 1 must include biblical integration into liberal studies
Major Field Honors Class 1 must include the integration of liberal studies and biblical studies into career field
Senior Honors Project 4-6 hours  
  • Project Proposal
1 hour  
  • Honors Project
3-5 hours  
Total 12-14 hours  

(Major field honors classes must be selected from: Strategic Management, Survey of Music History I-III, Personality Theories, Ethics, Educational Psychology, or a class approved by the Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) Director if the student is enrolled in the IDS program.)

Honors Program Admission Requirements

Admission to the Honors Program in the First/Freshman Year

Students beginning their first full year of college are eligible for admission into the Honors Program. They must satisfy the following requirements:

  • ACT composite score of 27 or above, or SAT composite score of 1820 or above.
  • High School GPA of 3.4 or higher on a 4.0 scale.
  • Two references in writing from persons familiar with the academic abilities of the applicant.
  • Submission of a completed Honors Program Application form and 300-350 word essay.
  • Interview with the Honors Program Committee.

Second Year Admission

Students may be admitted to the honors program at the beginning of their second year and may waive no more than three of the required honors classes. Students waiving two or more honors classes must enroll in their senior project for 4 or 5 hours of credit.

Admission to the Honors Program in the Second/Sophomore Year

Students who do not meet all of the requirements for admission at the beginning of their freshman year, or those who do not seek admission as first-year students may apply to the program at the beginning of their second year if they satisfy the following requirements:

  • Completion of at least 26 credit hours with a 3.5 GPA.
  • Letters of reference from two OCU professors.
  • Submission of a completed Honors Program Application form and 300-350 word essay.
  • Interview with the Honors Program Committee.

Admission to the Honors Program as a Transfer Student

Students transferring to Ohio Christian University at or before the start of their second/sophomore year may be admitted to the Honors Program if they satisfy the following requirements:

  • 3.5 GPA in all undergraduate work completed.
  • ACT composite score of 27 or above, or SAT composite score of 1210 or above.
  • Letter of recommendation from two professors at the previously attended college or university.
  • Submission of a completed Honors Program Application form and 300-350 word essay.
  • Interview with the Honors Program Committee.

Honors Program Requirements for Students Admitted Their Second Year

Honors History Elective from required history course 1 must include historiography
Honors Introduction to Literature 1 must include critical analysis
Honors Pentateuch 1 must include biblical integration into liberal studies
Honors Gospels 1 must include biblical integration into liberal studies
Major Field Honors Class 1 must include the integration of liberal studies and biblical studies into career field
Senior Honors Project 5-6 hours  
  • Project Proposal
1 hour  
  • Honors Project
4-5 hours  
Total 10-11 hours  

 (Major field honors classes must be selected from: Strategic Management, Survey of Music History I-III, Personality Theories, Ethics, Educational Psychology, or a class approved by the Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) Director if the student is enrolled in the IDS program.)

Continuation in the Honors Program

The Honors Program at OCU is a four-year program (three years for those admitted as second/sophomore year students). To continue in the program from year to year, the Honors Scholar must meet the following requirements:

  • Maintain a 3.5 GPA or higher.
  • Enroll in the fall and spring Honors Seminars.
  • Progress toward completion of other Honors Program requirements, including the completion of the Honors general education and Bible classes, major field honors classes and the submission of an acceptable Senior Honors Project.

Schedule Conflicts

In the event an honors student has a schedule conflict that prevents him/her from enrolling in the honors section of a required honors class, the student must propose an alternative section of course substitution to be taken for honors credit. For example, if the student has a schedule conflict that prevents him/her from enrolling in Introduction to Literature, an alternative literature course such as Adolescent Literature must be proposed as an alternative honors course. The honors student must complete the additional hour of honors work for honors credit.