Academic Requirements

Saint Mary’s College Honors Program Graduation Requirements 

SMC Honors Program Academic Requirements

  • Maintain a 3.5 GPA 
  • Two Honors Contracts (or one Honors Contract and an Honors Independent Study)
    • Honors Contracts enable students to develop, under the guidance of a professor, an enriched curriculum from an upper-division courses in which the student is enrolled.
    • Honors Contracts demand that students achieve “greater depth and rigor” than what is required of their classmates and might well be viewed as a primer for graduate study.
    • Students must have completed at least one Honors Contract or Independent Study by the beginning of their senior year.  Except by special permission, only one Honors contract may be pursued at a time.
  • A Thesis or Capstone Project
    • Students whose majors already require a major need not complete a “separate” Honors Senior Thesis; they will submit paperwork explaining how their major thesis demonstrates unusual academic depth and rigor.
    • Students whose majors do NOT require a thesis may sign up for independent study or topics courses in their departments, or develop their theses independently.
    • Theses are developed with an eye to public presentation (see below!)
  • Presentation of Research
    • Honors Students must present research at least one time. Students may present any one of their contracts, or more commonly, their senior thesis
    • SMC Spring Symposium is a great way to present research; this takes place annually in May.
    • Other options include conferences, departmental thesis forum, or another avenue of the student's choosing.