As a requirement for the Honors Program, students are required to take 10 Honors courses before graduating. Honors students are eligible to contract non-Honors upper level courses, graduate courses and independent studies for Honors credit. Depending on the course type, your role may vary, but the Honors staff will always follow up at the end of the semester to get final confirmation that the student was successful.
For upper level non-Honors courses (numbered 2000 to 4999): The student and professor must agree on an extra Honors component in addition to the standard course requirements. This can be an extra research paper, project, literature review, presentation or any experience that qualitatively enhances the course for the student. This list is by no means exhaustive—the Honors-qualifying project is an agreement between the professor and the student. Because this project is not part of the grading rubric for the students taking the course, it should not be factored into the course grade. For it to count for Honors course contract credit, however, the quality of the project must be worth a B+ or better.
For graduate courses (5000 or higher) or undergraduate courses cross-listed with graduate courses: No extra component needs to be added to student requirements to make it count towards Honors requirements—only confirmation that the student will be held accountable for completing the graduate-level syllabus. A contract proposal form must be submitted to the Honors office in order for the Honors staff to know that you wish the course to count towards your Honors Program requirements.
For independent studies: No extra component needs to be added to student requirements to make it count towards Honors requirements, however a contract proposal form must be submitted to the Honors office in order for the Honors staff to know that you wish the course to count towards your Honors Program requirements.
Tips for developing contracts:
- Set very specific expectations for what you consider a successful project. For instance, if regular meetings are expected, make this a requirement for successful completion.
- Consider a due date earlier than the end of the semester for a project, so a student may have time to revise and re-submit.
- If multiple students in the course wish to contract, look into the possibility of a group assignment.
Below are examples of contracts students undertook that we like--they are specific, add qualtitative learning experiences to the course, and are substantial enough to justify the course counting towards a student's Honors course requirement.
ARTH 2096 Cultures of Excess: The Patronage and Criticism of Courtly Luxury
The Honors requirement includes a modified final project for the class, which is an exhibition catalogue. To fulfill the Honors requirement, the minimum amount of art to be included in the catalogue has been raised from 6 to 8, which will involve more research and writing. In addition, I will be required to prepare a formal presentation about my exhibition catalogue for the class, which is not a requirement for non-honors students in the class.
FILM 4398 Screenwriting Master Class II
After writing a second draft of my feature length screenplay and completing the normal course requirement, I will write a third draft that will serve as the polished edition of my piece. It will be based on feedback from the previous drafts. I will then work with my professor to begin submitting my screenplay to contests, fellowships and retreats, taking the first step toward Hollywood/indie film production circulation.
Asian Studies 3541 Japan Today
This course is primarily discussion based with short article readings due every week. To add an Honors dimension to the course I will be reading three books on varying topics related to the culture of Japan and writing a five page critical review of each book. This will give me a much deeper look on Japan’s society than the course will offer, for I will be dealing critically with specific viewpoints and topics.
PBHL 3104 Professional Seminar in Public Health
Rather than volunteering 25 hours over 8 weeks at my volunteer site, I will be volunteering 6 hours a week every week for the Spring Semester. This will amount to volunteering 65 hours more than non-honors students in this course.
SPSY 2271 Introduction to School Psychology
I will be participating in the Incredible Years Program at Dunbar Promise Academy alongside the professor of this course and students in the school psychology graduate program. I will receive the training and participate on a weekly basis. Beyond that, I will be keeping a clinician’s log of my experiences and relating it to research I will be doing on the effectiveness of social skills programs in school by reading different studies, and how my experiences fulfill the NASP (National Association of School Psychologist) practice model in foundations of service deliver, as well as direct services. Attached with this contract is an extensive overview of this project.
Bio 2241 Invertebrate Biology
This is in conjunction with my effort to found a Temple Entomology club. I intend to work in conjunction with the Academy of Natural Sciences to establish an insect trap on Temple’s campus. I will collect 2-3 separate samples in the Spring Season, from which I will sort and mount the species collected. I will then create a display of the mounted specimens, and publish/present a study of the biodiversity of our local ecosystem. It will be an examination of urban ecology, ideally and eventually be a part of the Academy’s permanent collection.
STHM 3221 Athletics Administration
My professor and I discussed various options for adding an Honors dimension to this course, and we agreed that an additional research project would be the best way to do so. Overuse injuries are a frequently discussed topic in the realm of collegiate athletics, and I am interested in completing a research project examining the relationship between overuse injuries and the policy changes that the NCAA is attempting to make to decrease these injuries. I will conduct research on my topic in the necessary fields, and I will write a 6-8 page paper (at minimum) detailing my findings. I am confident that completing this project will add an Honors dimension to the course, while also allowing me to conduct research in my intended career path.