The University Honors College is one of the most comprehensive and academically rich programs of its kind in the country. The Honors College emphasizes experiential learning, providing transforming life experiences inside and outside of the traditional classroom by encouraging study abroad, internships, and community service. The program fosters in-depth scholarship by encouraging multiple degrees in diverse subjects, undergraduate research, graduate work, capstone courses, and an Honors Thesis. With access to advanced educational opportunities, and special recognition and privileges, our Honors Scholars experience the best that a large research university can provide and the personal attention expected from an elite small college.
The Honors College provides two comprehensive, university-wide options for academically talented students: the Honors College for incoming freshmen students and the Advanced Honors Program for upper-division current UB and transfer students. Students accepted to each program receive special benefits, allowing them to create educational experiences unique to their individual interests.
The responsibilities of an Honors College Scholar who enters as a freshman include successfully completing 21 credits of honors coursework, including the Honors Colloquium in the spring semester freshman year and completing one Honors seminar in the fall semester of the freshman year. Students should maintain a minimum semester and overall Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.3 during the first year and at least a 3.5 GPA in each successive year, as well as graduate with an overall GPA of 3.5.
Beyond Colloquium (2 credits) and the Honors seminar (3-4 credits), students must select and complete additional credit hours of Honors Experiences from the following list before graduation (to reach the required total of 21 honors credits):
- Undergraduate research*
- Independent study*
- Internship or practicum*
- Study abroad*
- Undergraduate supervised teaching*
- Graduate coursework
- Departmental Honors coursework
- Departmental Honors thesis or project*
- Senior Capstone coursework
- Contract Honors coursework
- Honors Experience Petition
- Additional Honors Seminar
*Denotes non-coursework category
- 5 credits must be completed by the end of the freshman year (credits earned through the Honors Colloquium and the Honors Seminar) and 13 credits total must be completed by the end of the junior year to maintain good standing in the Honors College.
- A maximum of 9 credit hours per category are allowable.
- At least 3 credits must come from non-coursework categories, denoted with *.
- A total of 3 Honors Seminars may be taken.
- Courses in a student’s major may be used to meet the Honors Experience requirements.
Advanced Honors Program
Each semester, highly qualified current university students are invited to apply for admission to the Advanced Honors Program. Students are eligible to apply once they have completed 45 credit hours and have a minimum overall GPA of 3.5 (including all transfer credit). The program provides an individualized honors opportunity for academically talented students, including those who may not have been eligible for the Honors College upon admission to the university.
The responsibilities of an Advanced Honors Scholar include successfully completing 16 credits of honors coursework, including the Advanced Honors Colloquium in their first semester of the program. Students are required to maintain a minimum semester and overall Grade Point Average (GPA) 3.5 GPA in each successive year and graduate with an overall GPA of 3.5.
Beyond Advanced Honors Colloquium (1 credit), students select and complete 15 credit hours of Honors Experiences from the following list before graduation (to reach the required total of 16 honors credits):
6 credit hours of Honors coursework (chosen from the following):
- Contract Honors coursework (at the 200 level or higher)
- Departmental Honors coursework (at any level)
- Graduate Coursework
- Honors Seminar (enrollment limited to available seats)
3 credit hours of Honors experiential coursework (chosen from the following):
- Independent Study
- Internship or Practicum
- Honors Experience Petition
- Service Learning
- Study Abroad
- Undergraduate Research
- Undergraduate Supervised Teaching
6 credit hours of thesis coursework* (any combination of the following):
- Departmental Honors Thesis or Project
- Undergraduate Thesis Research
*If only 3 credit hours of thesis coursework are required to complete the thesis, an additional 3 credit hours of Honors coursework or experiential coursework must be completed. Undergraduate thesis research coursework is generally completed through research (498) or independent study (499) credits as determined with your faculty mentor.
8 credits must be completed by the end of the junior year to maintain good standing in the Honors College in addition to maintaining a 3.5 UB undergraduate GPA.
March 1 and October 1
Honors College Scholarships
The Honors College offers several scholarship awards for prospective and enrolled Honors Scholars.