Ad Hoc Honors

Procedure and Requirements


Winter 2018 Due Dates
By... You must have...
Monday, Jan 15 @ 9:00am Submitted a complete application for any ad hoc Honors projects happening this quarter
Wednesday, Jan 17 @ 5:00pm Received a confirmation email stating that your adviser (Honors Program or Departmental) has approved or denied your application
Monday, Jan 22 @ 9:00am Received a confirmation email stating that your course instructor approved or denied your application
Tuesday, Jan 23 @ 9:00am Submitted any revisions for an ad hoc Honors project denied by either your adviser or your instructor
Thursday, Jan 25 @ 9:00am Received adviser approval for any revisions made to an application that was initially denied.
Monday, Jan 29 @ 9:00am Received instructor approval for any revisions made to an application that was initially denied.
Friday of Finals Week Completed your ad hoc Honors project
Monday, Apr 2 @ 9:00am Received confirmation that your instructor submitted the final evaluation

Ad hoc Honors provides students the opportunity to work with an instructor to create a plan of additional study in order to pursue a course or study abroad program with more depth. Completion of this ad hoc project may earn the student Honors credit that can be applied towards the Interdisciplinary Honors Core or Departmental Honors requirements, as determined by the appropriate advisers (University Honors Program advisers for Interdisciplinary Honors and departmental advisers for Departmental Honors).

Any Honors student who exercises this option must show significant initiative and pursue a serious amount of supplementary work in his or her exploration of the subject. Instructors should not accept this contract if they are unable to also give the time and effort necessary to supervise the Honors student's project. Ad hoc must be a partnership between the instructor and student and both must commit to extended effort and be available, aware, and engaged in the project. Unless both are prepared to make this commitment, the ad hoc option should not be undertaken.

For Interdisciplinary Honors

  • No more than 15 credits of a student's Interdisciplinary Honors Core requirements may be satisfied via "Honors by contract" courses which include ad hoc (either on-campus or via study abroad), graduate courses, and HONORS 499.
  • A course must be 4 or 5 credits to be considered for ad hoc Honors and must be decimal graded.
  • Large courses (50+ students) and introductory survey courses (including English composition classes) will not be approved for ad hoc credit.
  • Introductory language courses will not be approved. See an Honors Program adviser to discuss upper-level language courses.
  • Courses which are offered as Honors versions are not eligible for ad hoc (ie, ART 190 or PHYS 121).
  • Ad hoc Honors cannot be awarded retroactively. Applications must be received before the due date posted on the Honors website. Students are encouraged to submit applications as early as possible.
  • Coursework taken to fulfill an Interdisciplinary Honors Core requirement may overlap with a student's major but cannot also be used to satisfy a Departmental Honors requirement.
  • If you are participating in an Honors Program sponsored study abroad or exchange you do not need to do an ad hoc Honors project to earn Honors credit.

2010-2014 Interdisciplinary Honors curriculum

  • Courses must have an assigned Areas of Knowledge designation listed on the Time Schedule. Honors credit type is awarded according to this designation:
    • I&S = Honors Social Science
    • VLPA = Honors Arts/Humanities
    • NW = Honors Natural Science
    • Students may not ad hoc their Honors Interdisciplinary course requirement; this may only be fulfilled though an HONORS 39X or other Honors-sponsored course

2015 Interdisciplinary Honors curriculum

  • Courses taken for ad hoc do not need an assigned Areas of Knowledge designation listed on the Time Schedule.
  • Ad hoc Honors courses can only be applied to the "Additional Any" category of the Honors curriculum.

For Departmental Honors

Please contact your department directly for information and guidelines about what courses may be appropriate for Departmental Honors credit. You may begin by reviewing Departmental Honors requirements and your department's home page, but please speak with an adviser for final confirmation.


Students applying for ad hoc Honors credit (Interdisciplinary or Departmental) must:

Studying abroad?

If you are participating in a study abroad program for which you do not yet know your exact instructor(s) or course title(s), you will submit a preliminary application, to be revised when those details are available. Just remember, you cannot get Honors credit until those final details are entered and final approval is granted.

  1. Review the above information to ensure the course is eligible for ad hoc credit. Email or meet with the appropriate adviser to confirm eligibility.
  2. Contact the instructor well before the start of the quarter and discuss the concept of ad hoc Honors, as well as your ideas for a project. Gain preliminary approval from your instructor prior to submitting your online application.
  3. Complete and submit the online application as soon as possible and before the quarterly due date posted on the Honors website.
  4. You will receive an email from the Honors Program once your adviser has reviewed your application. If approved, your instructor will be prompted to review and approve the application as well; you will receive an additional email confirmation once this has happened. It is your responsibility to ensure your adviser and instructor submit their approvals via the online system by the due date posted on the Honors website. Should your adviser or instructor decline your application, you will receive an email allowing you to revise your original application one time only.
  5. Once approved, complete your ad hoc project as outlined.
  6. At the end of the quarter, your instructor will receive an email asking them to submit final confirmation that you have completed your project. You will receive a final email once your instructor has submitted the approval. It is your responsibility to ensure your instructor provides this final confirmation via the online system. Without this confirmation, Honors credit will not be awarded.
  7. Processing ad hoc Honors takes several weeks after that final confirmation has been received; you can expect to see an "H" designation on your transcript by the middle of the following quarter.


Students interested in pursuing ad hoc Honors should brainstorm potential projects and are encouraged to think creatively as to how they will more deeply explore the subject material. Some possible projects include:

  • Making an interactive Google Map embedded with text, photos, and videos;
  • Conducting primary research, such as in-person interviews, and integrating that research with theory and analysis;
  • Deeply researching a particular aspect of the course and teaching that subject to the rest of the class;
  • Making a podcast of interviews and analysis related to a course theme.

As shown by these examples, ad hoc work should be in-depth and not merely an extension of a pre-existing assignment. Please feel free to meet with both an adviser and your instructor to discuss potential ideas.