The Honors Program

PSU honors students working in a lab

There are many benefits to being an Honors student at PSU. You’ll receive personalized advising, priority registration for classes, and support from trained tutors in the Honors Writing Center. We also offer internships for credit, access to leadership opportunities, and enrichment workshops focused on graduate school and careers. Your time in the University Honors College will be both challenging and rewarding.

Students from all majors and departments are welcome to join the University Honors College. Honors students take courses in academic writing, critical thinking, and research skills, and are encouraged to find internships and research opportunities and to study abroad. The overarching goal of the Honors curriculum is to transform students from consumers of information to producers of knowledge, with the thesis as the culminating achievement.

At PSU, general education is fulfilled by the completion of the requirements for either the University Honors College (HON) or University Studies (UNST), both of which are 4-year programs. Completing Honors does not add additional time or credits to the PSU degree, and does not change the required courses for any major. Since Honors courses also satisfy many degree (BA/BS) requirements, both writing requirements, and can simultaneously fulfill major requirements, it is an expedited path to graduation for many. Students should plan on taking one Honors course per quarter, with Honors faculty and fellow Honors students; all other courses for the major or electives are taken with all PSU students.

PSU Honors student on his way to class

First Year

The Global City

Lay the Groundwork: Form tight bonds with your peers in a small, year-long course, focused on developing advanced writing skills through intensive study of the urban environment.

15 credits

PSU Honors students studying together

Second Year

Urban Discourses

Explore New Perspectives: Learn how to tackle questions in the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities by investigating how researchers approach problems in their fields. 

12 credits

PSU honors student in the honors college

Third Year

Theory & Practice

Personalize Your Path: After one required seminar, students may choose to complete their remaining credits through additional seminars, internships, research opportunities, or study abroad.

12 credits

PSU honors student walking in the woods

Fourth Year

Honors Thesis

Showcase Your Skills: Apply your expertise to an in-depth thesis project of your own design. Work with a faculty mentor in your major and publish your thesis in PSU's online database.

8 credits

Transfer Students

30-89 College Credits:  Begin with second-year coursework; all three courses are required.

90+ Credits: Begin with third-year coursework, including HON 399.

Transfer Bridge Course (HON 399): This required course is designed to introduce transfer students to the Honors writing and research tools and connects them with a cohort.