Ad Hoc

Procedure and Requirements

Ad Hoc Learning Deadlines

Spring 2024

Spring 2024 Due Dates (Previous Quarter)

By… You must have…
Monday, Apr 1 @ 9:00am Submitted a complete application for any ad hoc Honors projects happening this quarter
Wednesday, Apr 3 @ 5:00pm Received a confirmation email stating that your adviser (Honors Program or Departmental) has approved or denied your application
Monday, Apr 8 @ 9:00am
Received a confirmation email stating that your course instructor approved or denied your application
Tuesday, Apr 9 @ 9:00am
Submitted any revisions for an ad hoc Honors project denied by either your adviser or your instructor
Thursday, Apr 11 @ 9:00am Received adviser approval for any revisions made to an application that was initially denied.
Monday, Apr 15 @ 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
Tuesday, Jun 11 @ 5:00pm Received confirmation that your instructor submitted the final evaluation

Summer 2024

Summer 2024 Due Dates (Upcoming/Current Quarter)

By… You must have…
Monday, Jun 24 @ 9:00am Submitted a complete application for any ad hoc Honors projects happening this quarter
Wednesday, Jun 26 @ 5:00pm Received a confirmation email stating that your adviser (Honors Program or Departmental) has approved or denied your application
Monday, Jul 1 @ 9:00am
Received a confirmation email stating that your course instructor approved or denied your application
Tuesday, Jul 2 @ 9:00am
Submitted any revisions for an ad hoc Honors project denied by either your adviser or your instructor
Thursday, Jul 4 @ 9:00am Received adviser approval for any revisions made to an application that was initially denied.
Monday, Jul 8 @ 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
Tuesday, Aug 20 @ 5:00pm Received confirmation that your instructor submitted the final evaluation

Summer C-Term 2024

Summer C-Term 2024 Due Dates (Next Quarter)

By… You must have…
Monday, Aug 26 @ 9:00am Submitted a complete application for any ad hoc Honors projects happening this quarter
Wednesday, Aug 28 @ 5:00pm Received a confirmation email stating that your adviser (Honors Program or Departmental) has approved or denied your application
Monday, Sep 2 @ 9:00am
Received a confirmation email stating that your course instructor approved or denied your application
Tuesday, Sep 3 @ 9:00am
Submitted any revisions for an ad hoc Honors project denied by either your adviser or your instructor
Thursday, Sep 5 @ 9:00am Received adviser approval for any revisions made to an application that was initially denied.
Monday, Sep 9 @ 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
Tuesday, Sep 24 @ 5:00pm Received confirmation that your instructor submitted the final evaluation

Ad Hoc projects are done in addition to normal coursework within a class with the help and guidance of the faculty member teaching the regular course. Completion of an ad hoc project may earn the student Honors credit that can be applied towards the Interdisciplinary Honors Elective Requirement or, for Departmental Honors students, to their Departmental Honors requirements.

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. The ad hoc topic must relate to the course you are doing the ad hoc project for in some way, but doesn’t need to be explicitly related. The medium that the project is delivered in is completely up to the student. 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.

Application and Evaluation

The Ad Hoc application can be found below, alongside the evaluation rubric that Interdisciplinary Honors advisers use to evaluate your application and structure feedback. Departmental Honors Ad Hoc projects might not be evaluated using this same rubrics.

Ad Hoc Application

Evaluation Rubric

Strong Ad Hoc applications are detailed and specific in outlining the project, motivations, and purpose of the project. See the rubric below for the criteria the Honors staff is considering when evaluating your ad hoc project.

Click here for rubric
Application Question Strong Sufficient Insufficient
Provide a brief description of this course as well as an explanation of the required coursework. A brief description (3 sentence minimum) can be taken from the course catalog or syllabus, in addition to and details about assignments, projects and activities. Provides a comprehensive overview of all components of the course, including course description and goals

Gives context for how much time/emphasis is placed on assignments, projects, and activities

Provides a general overview of coursework and course goals/descriptions

Might lack in specificity but provides a good sense of how the course is structured, and the type of assignments

Unclear what the focus of the course is.

Provides a vague overview of coursework

Lacks in specificity to the point that course adviser cannot discern what type of work is done in class.

Outline your proposed ad hoc Honors Project, be sure to include the main topic, focus, and goal of the project, as well as details about the deliverable of your project (i.e., if a video, how long will it be? If reviewing resources, how many minimum? how will you find them? etc.) Outlines a clear, specific topic or focus

Connects a specific goal of the project to topic and focus
Includes what additional work will be undertaken for the purpose of the project and how that will support the address of the main goal/focus/topic

Provides specific details about the deliverable
Is generally very specific, with clearly identifiable action items and deliverables

Outlines an identifiable topic and focus
Connects the goal of the project to topic and focus

Includes additional work that needs to be undertaken, but might lack in specificity

Outlines specific details about the deliverable

Gives a good, general picture of the project but might have some pieces still in development

Topic and focus are vague and nonspecific

Goal is general and unfocused

References to additional work are vague

Does not outline specifics of the deliverable (Ex: I will write a research paper)

Does not provide a general picture of the project due to lack of specificity

Discuss your motivations for pursuing this ad hoc project. What do you hope to gain from completion of this project? Meaningfully explains motivation and connects it to personal values and interests or educational and professional goals

Explains how motivation connects to specific aspects of the project and/or the skills/ knowledge that will be gained

Connects motivation to the deliverable and goal of the project

Explains motivation and connects it to personal values or educational and professional goals

Explains how personal motivation connects to skills/ knowledge gained through the project

Does not link motivation to the outcomes of the project

Does not adequately explain how project serves these motivations

Is generally vague and unspecific about motivations for pursuing ad hoc

How does this additional work connect with the educational goals of the course and/or your professors area of expertise? Draws specific, relevant connections between the project outline and goals and the course content

Explains what gaps the project aims to fill/how it supports student’s further interest in the topic

Describes how course/instructor expertise contribute to foundation of the project

Draws relevant connections between project and course content

Describes how project builds off of course content

Describes how course/instructor expertise relate to the project

Makes underdeveloped, vague connections between project and course content

Does not make specific connections between course goals and project

Does not make relationship between the course/instructor and project clear.

Outline your project schedule. In your schedule be sure to include your plan for in-person meetings, when each component of your project is due (drafts, revisions, preliminary research), when you are hoping to receive feedback, and other relevant steps. Provides specific dates/weeks for benchmarks and goals for the project

Identifies multiple meeting times and plan of contact with the instructor

Outlines all relevant steps to the project

Provides general, week-based deadlines for benchmarks and goals

Identifies multiple meeting times and plan of contact with instructor

Outlines relevant steps to the project

May have more general/less specific schedule than a strong response, but still communicates when necessary components of the project will be finished

Provides a brief and vague timeline for goals

Does not identify a communication plan with the instructor

Does not outline major parts of the project process 

Is generally lacking in specificity and does not communicate a realistic or reasonable plan for completing the project

Examples

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. Possible projects include but are not limited to videos, papers, speeches, plays, apps, websites, infographics, or a collection of photos/poems with annotations. Find past project examples and applications below.

See examples of past applications

Other project ideas:

  • 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.

Interdisciplinary Honors Ad Hoc Policy

  • No more than 15 credits of a student’s Interdisciplinary Honors requirements may be satisfied via “Honors by contract” courses (this includes ad hoc, 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.
  • Applications must be received before the due date posted on the Honors website and early applications are encouraged. Ad hoc Honors cannot be awarded retroactively.  
  • Ad Hoc Honors cannot count towards both Interdisciplinary Honors core requirements and Departmental Honors requirements, but it can overlap with a student’s major.
  • We only allow late submissions for emergencies and extraordinary circumstances. Take  time to consider whether applying this quarter is right for you given your circumstances.

Studying Abroad?

Ad hoc can be a great way to get Honors credit on a study abroad trip with a different department or program. We encourage you to consider how you can deepen your experience abroad through ad hoc. For example, we would not want your ad hoc project to require that you be inside studying while abroad in another country, but instead taking advantage of the opportunity you uniquely have abroad. 

  • When you submit your ad hoc application you will be prompted to let us know whether this ad hoc project is for a course happening at UW or 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), please request to meet with an adviser to discuss by the end of the first week of the quarter in which you are pursuing ad hoc. 

Studying abroad with Honors? Honors study abroad trips already receive Honors credit, so there is no need for ad hoc!

Ad Hoc Checklist:

Ready to apply for Ad Hoc? Please use the quick checklist below to check that your project/ course is eligible for ad hoc before applying. 

  • The course is 4 or more credits.

  • The course is decimal graded.

  • I have not already satisfied 3 out of 5 of my Honors elective courses with Honors by Contract.

  • I have connected with the professor about this project and they have agreed to supervise it.

  • I have read through the key deadlines and dates above.

  • I have read through the ad hoc timeline and policies.

  • My project is not an extension of an existing course assignment.

Departmental Honors Ad Hoc 

Departmental Honors ad hoc policies vary major to major, because of this, you will need to contact your Departmental Honors Adviser directly after reviewing their Departmental Honors webpage for information and guidelines about what courses may be appropriate for Departmental Honors credit. If your departmental policies refer you to our ad hoc policies, please see the Interdisciplinary Honors Ad Hoc policies above.

Frequently Asked Questions

What course should I ad hoc?

The answer to this question will be unique for every student, however, here are some things to keep in mind to help you choose a course to ad hoc:

  • Are you excited about expanding on a topic presented in the course or connecting the course topic to another interest of yours through an additional project?
  • Are you interested in getting to know the professor better? Does the professor have the availability to meet with you throughout the quarter and advise you on an additional project?

How much work should it be?

The project should be a similar workload as completing a major paper, or a final project, but not necessarily a cumulative project/final. A rule of thumb is that your ad hoc project should take about 20 hours throughout the quarter, this will ebb and flow depending on your project, but includes drafting the application, reaching out to and getting feedback from the instructor, as well as completing the project itself. The project should be a similar workload as completing a major paper or a final project.

What type of project can I pursue? Does it have to directly relate to my course topic?

Ad Hoc projects are a great way to prioritize pursuing a project you’ve always wanted to work on but have never prioritized. Make it a priority and explore your curiosity with the guidance of a faculty member.

Your project can be in any format, but must have some type of deliverable. Examples of deliverables include: Videos, infographics, essays, play books, short stories, annotated photography, sculpture, research papers, graphic design, interactive google maps with embedded info, primary research, podcasts.

Either the medium you complete the project in (i.e the deliverable) or the topic itself must relate to the professor’s expertise and/or course topic. For example;

  • If you are taking a video editing course, you could propose to make a video about any topic because your professor will be able to give you helpful feedback about the video structure itself.
  • In a course unrelated to video editing, you could propose to make a video expanding on or diving deeper into a course topic, while the professor may not have the expertise to give you feedback about the structure of the video, they will be able to give you good feedback about the topic/content.

What are examples of projects that students have done?

See examples of well-crafted past applications for Ad Hoc Honors here (remember, these are examples, make it your own!) 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.

Tips for choosing a project/topic?

Ad hoc can be a great way to expand your knowledge and/or skill set;

  • Choose a medium you actually like working in or are curious to try out, if you hate writing papers, do not propose to write a paper! If you enjoy making art, propose to explore your topic through an art form.
  • Choose a topic you’re actually curious about
  • Consider looking at job descriptions for potential careers you may be interested in. Are there any skills you may not get to build experience in before graduating listed in the required or desired skills section? For example, you could choose a project that would help you practice public speaking, process/analyze data, perform outreach, make a web app etc.

How do I reach out to the instructor?

While some professors are familiar with ad hoc, others are not. When you reach out to the professor (ideally before the quarter you are taking the course) be sure to include:

  • Self Introduction
  • Explanation why you’re reaching out and an overview of ad hoc, as well as a link to our ad hoc page
  • Why you are interested in ad hocing their course in particular
  • What ideas you have for your ad hoc projects
  • A recognition that they may not have the capacity to complete an additional project with you this quarter, that’s okay, and you’re still excited to take their course regardless

Can I extend a class assignment for my ad hoc project?

No, your ad hoc project needs to be an additional project, and the topic and medium you complete the project in should be different than the course assignments.

Can I submit after the deadline?

We will only allow late submissions for emergencies and extraordinary circumstances such as a death in the family, a serious illness (cold and flu excluded), or injury with proof provided. Please take some time to consider whether applying this quarter is right for you given your circumstances. If you believe this applies to you please reach out to uwhonors@uw.edu. All applications regardless of extenuating circumstances must be approved by Honors by the end of week 3 of the quarter in order for students to have enough time to complete their project by the final deadline.

I think my course is eligible for ad hoc but I am not quite sure, can I check with an Honors adviser before submitting?

Yes! Send an email to uwhonors@uw.edu and include a link to the course you are hoping to ad hoc to confirm eligibility.

My ad hoc course still is not showing up as Honors on my transcript, what gives?

Your transcript and degree audit should be updated by the Friday following the final grading deadline of the quarter. If by this date the course is still not applying correctly to your Honors Additional Any category, or appearing with an “H” on your transcript, please email uwhonors@uw.edu.