Honors Courses

The University Honors Program curriculum is the core of an honors education. It is designed to meet the needs of all our students, regardless of their major. Honors courses feature:

  • Broad and interdisciplinary focuses
  • Activities that delve deeply into intellectual traditions
  • Small class sizes
  • Distinguished instructors

Honors Courses

Honors Seminars are unique, discussion-based courses proposed by faculty on subjects within an area of their academic interest and expertise.

Departmental Honors Courses are offered by departments and colleges from across campus and take many forms.

NB: All Honors courses must be taken A–F. A grade of C- or better is required in order for the course to fulfill an Honors course requirement.

Other Courses That Fulfill Honors Experience Requirements

Honors Course Add-Ons

UHP students can work with faculty to arrange one course "add-on" per academic year. Course add-ons substantially change a student's work in a non-Honors course and allow the course to to fulfill one Honors course requirement. Course add-ons can take several forms, including but not limited to:

  • Course-related, faculty-directed research
  • A course-related project
  • An augmented syllabus explaining how the student will have some form of enhanced engagement with the course material.

Grand Challenge Curriculum

The Office for Undergraduate Education has collaborated with deans and faculty to develop Grand Challenge Curriculum (GCC) courses. These courses address important global issues through a solution-driven, interdisciplinary approach to learning. Cross-disciplinary instructors bring unique perspectives to the Grand Challenge being explored. Each GCC course taken at the 3xxx level or higher fulfills one Honors Course requirement.

Graduate Level Courses

By virtue of its graduate education mission, the University offers advanced classes at the 5xxx through 8xxx level that may be especially appropriate for Honors students to take as they seek to broaden and deepen their knowledge of their fields of interest.

Any class taken at the 6xxx, 7xxx or 8xxx level will fulfill honors course requirements. Students seeking access to a graduate-level course will need permission from the faculty member teaching the course. Students should be prepared to demonstrate their preparation when requesting permission from the instructor; they should not assume that access will be granted. Courses offered at the 5xxx level, which do not require special permission to register, may also fulfill an honors course requirement without an Honors course contract or any other verification, unless the course is regularly taken by non-Honors students to fulfill requirements in the student’s major (and selected emphasis area). Such a course, like any other undergraduate non-Honors course, can be the subject of an Honors course contract.

Please consult with your Honors Academic Advisor before enrolling in a graduate level course to be sure the course is appropriate.

Honors Seminars

Honors Seminars are unique, discussion-based courses on a topic of the faculty member's academic interest and expertise. Most Honors Seminar instructors are faculty from departments across the University of Minnesota, as well as a few community experts with exceptional knowledge and experiences to share with our students. 

Seminars are capped at 19 or fewer students to provide for a small class experience and direct interaction with the instructor. Seminars are open to all majors and have no prerequisites unless otherwise stated in the course description. Each year, our seminar series contains a mix of long-running returning courses and one-off courses that may not be taught again.

Detailed course descriptions, meeting times, and availability can be found in Schedule Builder.

Fall 2023 Honors Seminars

Departmental Honors Courses

Schedule Builder provides an up-to-date list of department-based Honors courses by term:

Tutoring for Honors Courses

Tutors are available in the areas of chemistry, math, and physics. Honors students in both honors and non-honors versions of these courses are encouraged to participate in these groups! Tutoring session are occasionally cancelled, so please check this calendar if you are making a trip to Middlebrook.