The Honors Program offers a wealth of special opportunities for motivated, academically successful undergraduate students. These opportunities range from specially designed courses in general education (Honors in General Education Program) and in selected majors (Honors in the Major Program) to the many honors societies that students can join.

High achieving students often take advantage of more than one of these special opportunities to enrich their academic experience at Chico. Through these programs, they find that the quality of their education is heightened and that they forge special relationships with other honors students and with faculty. Moreover, the honors they earn make them highly desirable candidates for graduate school and for employment.


For this program, you complete a portion of your general education requirements by enrolling in special honors sections of general education classes. The honors sections are small, innovative, and interactive. They are taught by some of the best professors on campus. The classes offer a stimulating environment for learning, as well as an opportunity to work closely with honors faculty and other honors students. You become part of a vital learning community that comes together in the classroom as well as outside for social and education events. While in the program, you benefit from pirority registration for all of your classes, and successful completion of the program is prominently noted on your diploma and transcripts.

If you enter the Honors Program in General Education as a freshman, you have several options for your first year of honors work. You can participate as an honors student in the Freshman General Studies Thematic. (See "Freshman General Studies Thematic" following these pages or visit http://www.csuchico.edu/gst for more information.) If you plan to become an elementary school teacher, you can participate as an honors student in the Liberal Studies Integrated Teacher CORE. (See the Education or Liberal Studies chapter of the catalog or visit http://www.csuchico.edu/educ/progs_core.html for more information.) Your third option is to enroll in individual honors classes.

Many of our freshmen enroll in individual honors classes (http://www.csushico.edu/hnrs). Every semester the program offers approximately fifteen different honors classes from a wide range of departments across the university. With one or two exceptions, each class fulfills a general education requirement for graduation. We do offer an occasional section of very popular, non-GE classes as a service to our students. You choose which courses you want to take each semester. This structure gives the program the flexibility to fit well with every major on campus.

Lower-division courses are available in most of the required GE areas, and we are adding more all the time. Some of these classes are special honors sections of popular general education courses. Others are special, innovative classes created just for the Honors Program.

Upper-division requirements are met by special team-taught theme courses. You work with each other and professors from two disciplines, allowing you a richer understanding of a world of rapidly changing social and technological demands and opportunities. In the upper-division Honors theme you have the opportunity to complete a supervised research project, to study abroad, and/or to engage in service learning.

If you choose to take individual honors classes, you are required to complete 27 units or nine honors classes in your four years of study at the university. Of course, you can take more than the nine; many of our students do because they like the classes and do well in them. To remain in the program, you need to maintain a GPA of 3.0 or above in your honors courses and a 3.3 or above in your overall GPA.

The courses we offer for individual honors are outlined here. Which ones you choose to take depends on your interests, your major, as well as a number of other factors. Once you are admitted into the program, you will receive detailed information from us, and Honors staff is always available to review your options with you. Please see the appropriate academic program chapters for complete course descriptions.

Core Courses:
CMST 131H Speech Communication 3.0 A1
ENGL 130H Freshman Composition 3.0 A2
PHIL 102H Logic and Critical Thinking 3.0 A3
MATH 105H Statistics 3.0 A4
Breadth and Code Courses: The following courses satisfy General Education Areas C, D, and E requirements as indicated.
HNRS 175H Creativity & Interpretation 3.0 C1
THEA 112H Acting 3.0 C1
ENGL 251H American Indian Literature 3.0 C2E
PHIL 101H Introduction to Philosophy 3.0 C3
ANTH 113H Cultural Anthropology 3.0 D1
MCGS 155H Intro Multicultural/Gender Std 3.0 D3E
NFSC 100H Basic Nutrition 3.0 E
HNRS 249 Outstanding Prof. Seminar 3.0 varies
HIST 130H United States History 3.0 (A State-mandated code course)
POLS 155H American Government 3.0 (A State-mandated code course)
Unlike standard 'code' courses, Honors in GE 'code' courses cannot be taken as credit/no credit.

Honors Connections:

Incoming freshmen should enroll in Honors Connections their first semester. This course focuses on the building of interdisciplinary learning communities. Working closely with a faculty member, each class explores an issue of contemporary concern from a variety of perspectives. The units earned in this class can be used to satisfy a general education requirement for any one area C, D or E of the student's choice.
HNRS 110H Honors Connections 3.0

Upper-Division Honors Theme:
You must complete 9 units of upper-division Honors theme courses to earn Honors in General Education.
Track 1:
PSYC 313H What Motivates Altruism? 6.0
RELS 342H What Motivates Altruism? 6.0
Plus any one course from Track 2 (except HNRS 399H)
Track 2:
1 course selected from:
BIOL 322H Science & Human Values 3.0
PHIL 322H Science & Human Values 3.0
CSCI 313H Mind in the Machine 3.0
PSYC 332H Mind in the Machine 3.0
SOCI 391H The Global Community 3.0
1 course selected from:
MCGS 316H Gender & Modernization 3.0 E
CMST356H Genocide & Mass Pers 3.0 NW
MJIS 356H Genocide & Mass Pers 3.0 NW
SOCI 356H Genocide & Mass Pers 3.0 NW
Plus the capstone:
HNRS 399H Honors GE Thesis 3.0

Admission to the Honors in General Education Program

Admission as a Freshman

If you are an incoming freshman who has exhibited scholastic ability and intellectual promise, we encourage you to apply for entrance into the Honors Program in General Education. To apply, you must have a high school GPA of 3.5 or an SAT of 1200 or an ACT of 27 or above.

Admission as a Transfer, Re-Entry, or Currently Enrolled Student

If you are transferring to the university and will have sophomore standing or better (30 or more transferable units), you will need a 3.3 or better GPA in your transferable course work to apply to the program. If you are already enrolled in the university, you may join the Honors Program prior to completing your lower division general education course work. You must have at least a 3.3 cumulative GPA.


Application forms for the Honors Program in General Education are available from the Honors Office (OCNL 236), 530-898-5749. An application can also be downloaded from http://www.csuchico.edu/hnrs/general.html.

Honors Houses

Honors students from various majors can apply to live in the Honors Houses (part of Konkow Hall, one of the newer campus residence halls). Honors Houses offer a study-oriented atmosphere as well as social events. They are managed by the University Housing Office.


Honors in the Major is a program of independent work in your major. It involves six units of honors course work completed over two semesters. Your honors work will be recognized at your graduation, on your permanent transcripts, and on your diploma. It is often accompanied by letters of commendation from your mentor in the department or the department chair. Most importantly, however, the Honors in the Major program allows you to work closely with a faculty mentor in your area of interest on an original performance or research project. This year-long collaboration allows you to work in your field at a professional level and culminates in a public presentation of your work. Students sometimes take their projects beyond the university for submission in professional journals, presentation at conferences, or competition in shows. Such experience is valuable for graduate school and professional life.

Some common features of Honors in the Major programs are:

1) You must take six units of Honors in the Major course work. At least three of these units are independent study (299H) as specified by your department. You must complete each class with a minimum grade of B.
2) You must have complete nine units of upper division course work or 21 overall units in your major before you can be admitted to the Honors in the Major. Check the requirements for your major carefully as there may be specific courses that must be included in these units.
3) Your cumulative GPA should be at least 3.5 or within the top 5% of majors in your department.
4) Your GPA in your major should be at least 3.5 or within the top 5% of majors in your department.
5) Most students apply for or are invited to participate in Honors in the Major during the second semester of their junior year. Then they complete the six units of course work over the two semesters of their senior year.
6) Your honors work culminates with a public presentation of your honors project.

While Honors in the Major is part of the Honors Program, each department administers its own program. Please contact your major department or major advisor to apply.

You can earn honors in the following majors:
Agricultural Business
Art and Art History
Asian Studies
Biological Sciences
Business (all options)
Child Development
Computer Science
Construction Management
Engineering (all options)
Geography and Planning
Health and Community Services
Nutrition and Food Sciences
Physical Education
Political Science
Religious Studies
Social Science
Social Work
Theatre Arts
If you are interested in participating in this honors program but your major is not listed, contact the Honors director at 530-898-4767.


Phi Eta Sigma is a national honor society for freshmen from all majors who have a GPA of 3.5 or better and have completed 12 or more units. Go to http://www.csuchico.edu/phieta/.
Golden Key National Honor Society
recognizes academic achievement in junior and senior undergraduates in all fields of study who are in the top 15% of their respective class. Visit http://www.csuchico.edu/goldkey/.
Phi Kappa Phi
is a national honor society for second-semester juniors (upper 5 percent of their class) and seniors (upper 10 percent of their class) from all majors. For more information browse www.csuchico.edu/pkphs. Discipline Associated Honor Societies exist in many departments across campus. Check with your major department for details or visit http://www.csuchico.edu/sac/org/cathon.html.
Pinnacle National Honor Society
for non- traditional students with a 3.0 GPA for undergraduates and 3.5 for master's candidates. Contact the Re-Entry Commissioner for details.


Each semester the college deans recognize superior scholarship by including on their Dean's List those students who earn a 3.5 GPA or better on 12 or more graded units the preceding semester.


The university recognizes superior academic performance at graduation and on students' diplomas and transcripts. Each college of the university may award honors to up to 5 percent of its undergraduates each year. Honors designations are distributed as follows:
Summa cum laude
may be given to no more than the top 1 percent of the graduating class.
Magna cum laude
may be given to no more than the top 3 percent of the graduating class.
Cum laude
may be given to no more than the top 5 percent of the graduating class.
'With Distinction'
is the honors designation used for master's degree graduates. This honor is awarded to students who maintain a 3.9 or above grade point average on all approved master's program course work and satisfy criteria established by the graduate committee of the program offering the degree.