Design Your Own Experience
Contracts give you the chance to earn Honors credit in non-Honors courses. Credit is based on the fulfillment of a customized project designed through a collaboration between student and professor. Honors contracts should be driven by your curiosity and can be used as a building block to other opportunities, including the honors thesis.
Before approaching an instructor, read the guidelines below and contact the Honors Director if you have questions.
Your Honors contract should outline a learning experience above and beyond normal course requirements. Develop the contract plan in consultation with your instructor. The project or experience described in the contract should include the kind of educational enrichment that characterizes honors courses. Ideally, the contract should include opportunities for student/faculty interaction. The emphasis should be placed on the quality of the experience rather than the quantity of work completed; this option should not merely cause you to do additional work to earn honors credit! Consider what type of project would improve your overall learning experience in the course and set you up for future success.
Honors Contract Examples
- Give class presentation(s) based on research undertaken for the contract
- Prepare a lecture or facilitate a class period or two under the supervision of faculty
- Engage in meaningful community service
- Review additional readings or materials to enhance or expand understanding of course content
- Create an original piece of music, work of art or design portfolio
- Undertake challenging lab experiments and report results
- Complete research paper
Grading is based on regular course requirements and a contract should not affect your grade in the course; the instructor should evaluate the final contract as satisfactory or unsatisfactory. If the final work is satisfactory and a course grade of B or higher is earned, the course credits will count toward an honors designation. The deadline for completing contract work is the end of the semester in which the course is taken. An incomplete contract is only permitted if an Incomplete is given for the course. The Registrar's Office will add an "Honors Contract" transcript notation for successfully completed projects.
- A minimum of six hours of pre-existing honors credit are generally needed before designing a contract
- Students may complete no more than two contracts in a semester
- Up to three contracts can count toward University Honors with Distinction; up to two contracts can count toward University Honors
- UNI General Education courses are not eligible for contracts
- Honors contract applications must be submitted by the third Friday of the semester in which the course is taken (first Friday of a summer school session) *Friday, September 8th for Fall 2023 contracts
- Students will receive approvals (or request for modifications) approximately one week after the submission deadline
- Archival copies of finished projects must be submitted to the Honors office by the last day of the semester in which the course is taken
- Faculty supervising an honors contract will evaluate final student work by completing the Honors Contract Faculty Report