Course Catalog 2022-2023

Honors Program


The Honors Program at Rochester University provides intellectually curious students with unique preparation for a lifetime of leadership and achievement in professional, academic, community, and social arenas. The Honors Program encourages students to cultivate all of their God-given talents and is compatible with all of Rochester University’s degree programs and extracurricular opportunities.

Academic Opportunities 

Honors courses bring Rochester University’s most academically gifted students together in one classroom, offering a dynamic learning environment that is characterized by interdisciplinary learning, low student-teacher ratios, and stimulating class discussions. Many Honors courses satisfy general education requirements.  

Honors credit can be earned in two ways: designated Honors courses offered through the Honors Program (course titles begin with “HON”), and Honors contract work. These courses can be taken as part of any degree program at Rochester University.

HON courses can be taken to fulfill a range of general education requirements. Courses developed exclusively for the Honors Program include HON 2013 Communication and Critical Thinking, HON 2113 The American Experience, HON 2213 Global Citizenship, HON 2314 Science as a Human Enterprise, HON 3113 The American Experience: Advanced Studies, and HON 3213 Global Citizenship: Advanced Studies. While most general education courses offer an overview of a specific discipline, these courses complement the breadth of knowledge by offering an in-depth, interdisciplinary, and thematic approach. HON courses meet and exceed the general education learning objectives through interdisciplinary approaches.

Rochester University also offers Honors versions of courses offered by other departments. Honors students are encouraged to register for the Honors sections of the following: HON 1102/REL 1002 Introduction to Christian Faith, HON 1113/REL 1013 Survey of Biblical Literature, HON 2023/SEN 2013 Corporate Responsibility and Social Entrepreneurship, HON 2033/THL 2013 Spiritual Formation, and HON 3653/LDR 3653 Strategic Leadership Theory and Practice.

Honors contracts allow students to earn Honors credit in regular upper-division courses and can be pursued by students who have completed 12 hours of Honors coursework and have a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher. Honors students are responsible for initiating Honors contracts with their professors and are encouraged to pursue Honors contracts within their majors. Benefits of Honors contracts include the opportunity for students to form a closer association with a faculty member, investigate topics of interest at a deeper level, and receive guided, practical preparation for graduate school and professional work. Students wishing to pursue an Honors contract must fill out an application, available from the Honors Program Director (

Honors students must maintain a GPA of 3.5 or higher to enroll in any Honors course.



Students who meet the following eligibility criteria are encouraged to apply for admission to the Honors Program:

  • Incoming freshmen - ACT score of at least 27, SAT score of at least 1290 (not including the essay), OR cumulative high school GPA of 3.5 or higher.
  • Transfer students - cumulative transfer GPA of 3.5 or higher.
  • Existing RU students - cumulative Rochester University GPA of 3.5 or higher.

The application to join the Honors Program is found at



All Honors coursework is clearly designated as such on student transcripts. Graduating students who have participated in the Honors Program and have maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher are eligible for recognition at Rochester University's annual Academic Awards ceremony and will receive Honors cords to be worn at commencement exercises. The credit requirements for this distinction are as follows:

  • Honors Scholar - at least 14 credits of Honors coursework completed.
  • Distinguished Honors Scholar - at least 20 credits of Honors coursework completed.


Additional Information

While personal growth is the primary reason to join the Honors Program, participation is also highly valued by prospective employers and graduate schools.

Honors Program participation is open to all eligible Rochester University students and is compatible with all degree programs and extracurricular activities. However, Honors coursework is offered through the traditional program only.

More information about the Honors Program can be obtained by visiting or by emailing the Honors Program Director at