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Current Students FAQ

More About Grades & Honors Coursework

There is no predetermined curve in honors classes (or any classes). Theoretically, it is possible for all students in an honors course to earn an A. Honors courses count the same as all other courses in calculating a student's grade point average (GPA). They are not weighted in determining the GPA.

Experience indicates that the answer is no. Many students do their best work in honors courses. Your grades depend on your own motivation, study habits and interest.

To maintain good standing in the Honors College, a student must earn a GPA of at least 3.3 at the completion of 27 hours (or 2 semesters) and reach a GPA of 3.5 or higher at the completion of 58 hours and thereafter.

Students must also be making progress on their Honors course requirements. In the senior year, students must be enrolled in 499. It is to a student's advantage to complete all the university honors sections and honors seminar requirements in the first two years, but a student may use later years to finish honors requirements if necessary. In the first year, all required cultural and service activities must be completed.

Good standing is required for a student to register for honors sections and seminars, to receive priority registration, to be awarded honors merit scholarships (including renewal of an honors merit scholarship) and to obtain honors tickets for cultural events.

All honors courses and seminars are indicated as honors on your transcript. When students complete all required hours of honors seminars and honors university studies sections, they are recognized with a certificate and a UNCW Honors Scholar pin.

When students also complete the 499 project requirements, they graduate with University Honors and honors in the major. This is noted on the transcript, diploma and in the graduation program. Students also receive a medallion to wear to graduation.

Start thinking about departmental honors early in your college career. Talk with faculty members about their work and your interests.

Learn from other students about the entry process, talk to your honors academic advisor and get to know the faculty in your major. Although the project is usually undertaken in the senior year, you should begin to prepare well before that.

In order to prepare, many students do a directed independent study (491 and, in some majors, 291) course to investigate a topic or perhaps work closely with a professor in a lab or research setting. Watch for workshops on “Preparing for Departmental Honors” each semester. Also consider taking HON 191 your first year.