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Hofstra University Honors College

Frequently Asked Questions

When do I start?
When you are selecting courses before registration for the coming term. Notification goes out repeatedly to your Hofstra email.

When is the deadline?
Ideally, faculty submit proposals for new INHO’s around the end of the mid-semester registration period, either just before Thanksgiving in the fall and on or around April 1 in the spring. These deadlines do not apply to students pursuing PHOs or Honors Options in courses with a recently approved proposal. In those cases, Honors Options may be initiated as late as the first week of the semester.

Is the deadline absolute?
We encourage you to speak to the professor(s) before the deadline. If the professor needs time, we are flexible. We also help students make arrangements to join after the deadline right up until the beginning of the semester, but you need to begin the process early. When a faculty member is reactivating an INHO that was run recently, the deadlines are especially flexible.

Which courses are eligible?
Theoretically all courses are, but some departments have set aside certain courses as not appropriate for enrichment.

Can Honors Options be taken in introductory courses?
Many departments regularly run honors options in introductory courses. Still, it varies by School and department: for example, Honors Options are not available for Elementary or Intermediate language classes, nor for introductory courses in the School of Communication.

How much work is involved?
The emphasis is on a qualitative rather than a quantitative difference in the work. The difference in amount of work should be modest to moderate, and not pose a burden to the student who still has to satisfy the normal requirements of the class. The additional work should personalize and intensify the course as a whole, and be continuous through the term, not due all at once at the end of term.

What if it appears like too much work?
You do not need to stick with an INHO, even if you have initiated it, if it appears unmanageable for whatever reason (content-related or personal); moreover, a student can drop an Honors Option at any time (preferably before the official withdrawal deadline). The student should discuss with the professor how such a withdrawal from the INHO might affect the regular grade.

How many Honors Options can one take?
There is no limit per semester or overall. Some students continue to pursue honors credits even after having satisfied the requirements for an HUHC designation. We do not recommend however that you do more than one or two per semester so that you have time to do the additional work fully and completely without neglecting regular class work. Honors Options are meant to enrich your experience and should not interfere with regular course assignments.

Where can I find information about faculty who have done Honors Options in the past?
The HUHC web site will have this data on-line for consultation, but we encourage students to follow their own interests and initiatives in contacting faculty for INHOs in courses that serve their needs and interests. Many want to be asked!

Is it fair to initiate conversations with three or four faculty about Honors Options and then select the best one?
Yes, initial conversations with faculty are just that. It is fair for you to ask several faculty whether they are interested, as you try to get a feel for the direction an Honors Options might go in several specific classes. Just be certain to let faculty know when you’ve opted not to follow up on an initial inquiry; and do so before the faculty member has put any work into the development of the honors option proposal

Is it fair to begin three or four INHOs and then select the best one?
No, it is unfair to the faculty members who do extra labor preparing proposals in good faith on the assumption that your request for an Honors Option in that course and section implies a serious interest and commitment.

Is an INHO a binding contract?
No. There is no penalty if you drop an Honors Option, though the professor will not receive the stipend for the work done to arrange the Honors Option and accommodate your interests. Discuss the matter with the professor to make sure your withdrawal from the Honors Option will not affect your grade in the class

Can you do an Honors Option in the summer?
Yes, but we do not recommend it for courses taken abroad, since you should spend all available time abroad exploring the town and country you are visiting. For that reason, we developed the Study Abroad Honors Option which requires a structured journal, not linked to any particular class, and which encourages students to do more outside of class to discover and think about that particular place from various perspectives.

Can you do an Honors Option in the three week January or August terms?
Normally, the answer is no. The time is insufficient to allow for additional work, though study abroad during those terms still allows the Study Abroad Honors Option based on a structured journal, which is not tied to the course or grading schedule and can be submitted after the term.

How many honors credits do I need?
For the HUHC Graduate designation you need 30 honors credits, including Culture and Expression and one HUHC seminar. One half (15) of the total of 30 can be earned through honors options or by any combination of honors options and seminars. The Honors College Associate designation requires 18 honors credits including one HUHC seminar. The Honors College Recognition Designation requires 24 honors credits, up to 15 of which may be transferred from an honors program or college at another accredited university of college.

Can I earn honors credits for my departmental honors essay/project?
Yes. Most departments have their own Honors Essay or Honors Research listing (often 100 or 199) for departmental honors. When a student registers for such a listing, they typically do so with a particular professor who serves as the honors thesis advisor. The credits earned for the Honors Essay/Project also count toward the completion of HUHC designation requirements. Students who graduate with 30 honors credits (including C&E and one HUHC seminar), a GPA of 3.6 or above, and a completed departmental honors essay or project will earn the HUHC Graduate with Distinction designation on their transcript and diploma.