Departmental Honors Programs
The COMS Honors Program informs the most capable and motivated majors in the COMS Department about enriched educational opportunities and services available to them. It also encourages and guides qualified students to graduate with departmental honors.
Who participates in the COMS Honors Program?
Students admitted to the COMS major, who have an overall GPA of 3.2 or higher, are considered members of the COMS honors program. Being in the COMS Honors Program is a first step toward graduating with honors and a good way for any top student to get more out of being a COMS major.
What are the qualifications for graduating with departmental honors?
There are three: a) an overall GPA of 3.25; b) a COMS GPA of 3.5; and c) completion and defense of an honors thesis (for which 2-6 hours of COMS 498 are awarded).
How does a student arrange to write an honors thesis?
Meet with a faculty member who teaches in an area of communication that especially interests you. Discuss topics you might explore in depth and sketch out what a thesis might entail. Enroll in COMS 498 Honors Thesis with that individual (or continue your work with a colleague better suited to guide your project). Then complete the study, meet with a three-professor committee to present and review your thesis, and see "with honors" added to your diploma.
What opportunities accompany participation in the COMS honors program?
Students in the COMS honors program:
- are admitted to the COMS courses in which they wish to enroll
- are eligible for Lambda Pi Eta, a national Communication Honors Fraternity
- are invited to meet with scholars visiting the COMS Department
- receive information about graduate school fellowships and scholarships, about special seminar and research opportunities with faculty, about local and regional conferences in the field of communication, and other educational opportunities
- are invited to semi-annual meetings with the honors coordinator and other faculty members
- may be recruited by faculty for participation in research projects or special seminars that may provide a basis for their honors thesis
- may serve on a three-person Honors Advisory Committee to help the honors coordinator administer the program effectively (One representative from this committee attends COMS faculty meetings)
How do students get involved in the COMS honors program?
Every semester, the honors coordinator will contact all admitted COMS majors who have a GPA of 3.2 or higher. She will inform them of current and upcoming opportunities to participate. (Students who don't hear from her, or who have a slightly lower GPA or expect to apply for departmental admission very soon, may write her a note requesting to participate.)