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Honors College
www.nsu.edu/Honors

About

Honors College logo

The NSU Honors College provides an exciting community dedicated to maximizing students' college experience. It offers enhanced academic classes, co-curricular activities and special programs for high-ability students in all majors. The Honors College is a community of scholars where critical thinking, curiosity, imagination and creativity are encouraged. Challenging courses, spirited debate, international study, and research projects can all be part of the Honors College experience. The preparation students receive here will set him/her apart and improve his/her global marketability in the career of his/her choice.

Programs

The Honors College has three component programs: the prestigious Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Applied Sciences (DNIMAS) Science Honors Program for selected math and science majors; the Alison J. and Ella W. Parsons General Honors Program for all majors; and the Discipline-Specific Honors Programs currently available for students in History; Psychology; Interdisciplinary Studies; Technology; Nursing; Health Services Management; Health, Physical Education and Exercise Science; Social Work; and Business.

Characteristics of an Honors Course

Designers of Honors syllabi should strive to give their courses the following common characteristics:

Reading Pretinent Core Text
We suggest at least three readings of pertinent core texts (to be determined by the department and instructor) beyond the usual textbook or other regular course readings.

A text can be any length and any genre, and it can originate from any time period (including the present). Texts might also include films, paintings, seminal articles from journals, classic experiments, important case studies, great musical compositions, etc.

Reading Assignments
We suggest at least one additional reading assignment (beyond the three core texts above) in the history of the discipline or history of ideas.

Assignments
We suggest at least four assignments (with a written or oral deliverable) that require students to R.E.A.S.O.N. (see below) per the QEP.

  • Reflect - on information presented in diverse media and diverse frames of reference to identify main ideas, themes, and assumptions and make comparative judgments from data.
  • Evaluate - the validity and limitations of assumptions in relation to evidence and identify limitations and contradictions in an event.
  • Argue - to effectively advocate ideas and alternative solutions; identify, develop, and evaluate arguments and issues.
  • Solve - problems in creative, efficient, and effective ways to demonstrate creative problem-solving skills.
  • Obtain - desired goals or outcomes by assessing potential deviations from such outcomes; evaluate and implement a plan to work towards a goal or conclusion.
  • Network - to communicate ideas, alternative solutions, and desired outcomes in a variety of media and in diverse frames of reference; communicate the results, findings, and recommendations in a variety of media.

Essays
We suggest students write at least two essays per course (free of significant errors) beyond the writing requirement already in place for the regular course. These two essays may be included in the QEP assignment total. This writing might be in the form of lab reports or problem sets for science or math courses.

Research
We suggest students do and present (as appropriate) research in the pertinent discipline(s). Students should be literate in information technology, i.e., the proper methodology for doing advanced library and internet-based research.

Service Learning or Civic Engagement
We suggest an experiential, relevant, co-curricular component that is academically significant and coordinated with Honors College (including DNIMAS) programming. This may include service learning or civic engagement activities.

Technology
We suggest the infusion of technology that is appropriate, state-of-the-art and well understood by faculty and students into Honors courses across the disciplines.

Science
We suggest that discussion of the scientific method, paradigm shifts, and the role of science in public life be incorporated into Honors courses across the disciplines.

Interdisciplinary Perspectives
We suggest that Honors courses emphasize interdisciplinary perspectives whenever possible.

Academia
We suggest that Honors courses be attractive to students and academically rigorous.