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Requirements for Graduating with Honors

A USC Upstate Honors student is:
  • Intellectually curious and participates in undergraduate research, attends and hosts speakers and other extracurricular events and explores the world through study abroad;
  • A global citizen who contributes to his or her community and society through thoughtful service learning activities;
  • A leader who shares his or her ideas publicly through presentations and projects;
  • Academically accomplished and has achieved two of the following criteria: a minimum high school GPA of 3.25, SAT verbal and math score of 1100, or top 10 percent of their graduating class;
  • An active part of the honors learning cohort who completes at least six credit hours of honors courses per year. These courses include yearly honors seminars: The Life of the Mind (HON 101), Self and Society (HON 201), The Ethical Factor (HON 301), and The Process of Progress (HON 401).  
To graduate from the USC Upstate Honors Program, students must:
  • Complete at least 18 credit hours of honors seminars, courses, internships and tutorials of 200-level or above. This course of study will serve as an interdisciplinary minor, with the title of the student’s honors project designating the interdisciplinary focus of study on the transcript. All honors students, including those who transfer to USC Upstate with junior standing are required to complete the upper-level honors seminars: The Self and Society (HON 201), The Ethical Factor (HON 301), and The Process of Progress (HON 401). Honors students who enter USC Upstate as first-year students will typically complete more than 24 credit hours of honors courses, including 100-level courses and the Life of the Mind seminar (HON 101);

  • Maintain an average cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher;

  • Compile an electronic Honors Portfolio of projects and reflections from the honors seminar courses (HON 101, 201, 301, and 401), internships, research experience, service learning activities and extracurricular activities. The final portfolio will also include a Statement of Purpose describing the student’s accomplishments in the capstone honors project and the interdisciplinary theme or focus of study that underlies the student’s honors experience;

  • Present to a public audience a capstone project designed and proposed during the fall semester in HON 401 (The Process of Progress) and completed in the spring semester in a three-credit tutorial or internship under the guidance of an honors faculty member. Students are encouraged to pursue creative project formats, including multimedia, performance, experiential or application-based projects, although conventional thesis projects may also be accepted. Projects must be approved by the director of the Honors Program;

  • Complete a minimum of 20 hours of service learning activities, typically as a course requirement in Honors 201. Other service learning or community service must be approved by the director of the Honors Program. Short reflection essays about this community engagement will be included in the electronic Honors Portfolio; 

  • Demonstrate significant contributions to honors activities by serving on the Honors Student Council and/or participating in the programming of the Honors Program, such as research assistantships, study abroad and cultural activities. Each semester, honors students must attend four events that are approved by the director of the Honors Program. Short reflection essays about these events will be included in the electronic Honors Portfolio.  

Additional Information
Honors Program Application
Honors Courses

Faculty Applications
Propose an Honors Course

Contact Us
Catherine Canino
Director
864-503-5657

800 University Way
HPAC 208
Spartanburg, SC 29303
Toll-free: 800-277-8727 
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