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Section Two - Attachment 2.10 - Policy Statement 08-12: University Honors Program

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University Honors Program

(This policy supersedes Policy Statement 82-09 and 00-08)

This revised policy was recommended by the Academic Senate on March 27, 2008 and approved by the President on April 8, 2008.

The University Honors Program exists to meet the needs of high-performing students who want an enriched undergraduate program. It offers three options.

General Honors Plan I (minimum of 24 units) is designed for entering freshmen and consists of a minimum of 18 units of lower- and upper-division honors courses (which must include UHP 100 and 150) and a culminating 6-unit active learning project requiring a reflective component in the student's major (UHP 496 and UHP 498). Active learning project options include: performance, exhibition, study abroad, community-based learning, research/creative project (thesis), or internship.

General Honors Plan II (minimum of 15 units) is designed for upper-division transfers from community colleges and consists of nine units of upper-division honors courses and a culminating 6- unit active learning project requiring a reflective component in the student's major (UHP 496 and UHP 498). Active learning project options include: performance, exhibition, study abroad, community-based learning, research/creative project (thesis), or internship.

Honors in the Major (minimum of 9 units) consists of a minimum of one upper-division honors-specific course in the student's major department and a culminating 6-unit active learning project (courses in the major department equivalent to UHP 496 and UHP 498). Students in General Honors whose major department offers an Honors in the Major Program may apply to participate in both programs, in which case the General Honors active learning project would be satisfied through the Honors in the Major option.

Admission. Admission to the University Honors Program is based upon high school grade-point average, SAT or ACT scores, community college or CSULB grades, and faculty recommendations, as appropriate. Admission standards are designed to restrict participation in the program to the top 10 percent of CSULB students. Students who fail to maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00 will be withdrawn from the program. Also, students who fail to register for courses in the General Honors Program for two consecutive semesters will be withdrawn from the program.

Approval of Courses. The identification and staffing of courses to be offered as a part of General Education for students taking General Honors are decisions made by the director of the University Honors Program, following consultation with the Honors Advisory Council. Proposals for Honors in the Major and the creation of honors-specific courses other than UHP must be approved by (1) the department curriculum committee and department chair; (2) the college curriculum committee; and (3) the director of the University Honors Program, following consultation with the Honors Advisory Council. The management and staffing of the senior Active Learning Project must be approved by the department curriculum committee and department chair of the student's major, as well as by the director of the University Honors Program.

Definition of Honors Courses. Honors courses are different from most undergraduate offerings both in content and in the way they are taught. Honors courses are designed to be more demanding; they include a heavier emphasis on theory and/or address more complex issues. The assigned readings are normally scholarly works, both books and articles, rather than textbooks. Class time is devoted to discussions designed to give students the opportunity for independent interpretation and analysis. The emphasis is on written papers or projects, not standardized testing. Assignments are constructed to accommodate individual student interests and concerns. In short, the presumption is that students in the University Honors Program are able to embark on more challenging and creative assignments, are less dependent upon the assistance of their instructors in understanding assigned readings, and are motivated to function at a more advanced stage of critical analysis when considering the validity of a given work.

Definition of Senior/Active Learning Project. The senior project/portfolio is intended to provide the opportunity for personal intellectual growth. It can take the form of an original research or creative effort or it can incorporate study abroad, community-based learning, or an internship component. It can also be a project that is demonstrated, performed, or exhibited. Accordingly, the form that the research/preparation (UHP 496) and writing/demonstration/performance/exhibition (UHP 498) may take will vary with the student's major. The end product will be either a scholarly paper, a performance, or an exhibition. A performance or an exhibition must be accompanied by a reflective written component. The director of the University Honors Program will determine the appropriate format for the senior active learning project in consultation with the faculty member supervising the student's work.

Advisory Council. The University Honors Program shall have an Advisory Council composed of the director (ex officio, non-voting); a designee of the provost (ex officio, non-voting); eight members of the faculty, two from the College of Liberal Arts and one from each of the other colleges, selected by the respective college councils, preferably from among faculty who have taught in the program or supervised senior active learning projects; and two students, one seeking General Honors and one seeking Honors in the Major, selected by the faculty members of the Advisory Council. Terms shall be for two years in the case of faculty and one year in the case of students, and members shall be eligible for re-appointment. The Advisory Council shall conduct a minimum of one meeting each semester.

 

Section 2: Program Development and Approval
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