The Honors College at Marshall University is committed to creative, critical inquiry and respect for a multiplicity of thoughts, experiences, and identities. We support our students as scholars who are dedicated to becoming socially conscious, responsible leaders and lifelong learners engaged in the acquisition and application of knowledge for a greater good. In the Honors College, we believe that honors education should support honorable action. While there is much to learn in the context of the traditional classroom, we believe that opportunities to learn while doing things outside the classroom enhances creative and critical inquiry and elevates respect for others. Through experiential learning, students find ways to readily connect and apply their formal education to real world conditions in the communities of which they are a part. Honors students at Marshall University have a variety of different types of experiential learning opportunities. Some of these opportunities are institutionally sponsored and others may develop organically through a student’s needs and their own creativity. The Honors College supports both paths to providing experiential learning for Honors students. We want our students to be actively engaged in their learning and to seek out challenges that allow them essential self-reflection.
As the college continues to develop the framework of our support for Honors experiential learning, new information will be provided here and elsewhere. For now, we will outline future opportunities. Our experiential learning opportunities may be categorized broadly as: Collaborative Learning; International Engagement; and Scholarly & Creative Projects.
The Honors College has opportunities ranging from student-led courses that provide academic credit for learning experientially to ways for students to get engaged in the honors mission at Marshall through living and learning in on-campus housing. And, for those of you who want to get deep into the work of how things get done in the college, there are opportunities to serve on the committee’s that make policy and practice. Get engaged!
Honors College Student-Led, Peer, Faculty, and Community Partner Mentored Courses
The Honors College provides student-organized and led courses that are based in a fundamental need for collaborative work and that contribute to the welfare of particular communities. These are not faculty taught instructional courses–though each has a Faculty Mentor to provide guidance and support. Rather, they are an institutional means for students to earn academic credit for experiential learning in the context of productive work conducted on behalf of the college, its students, and the communities of which we are a part. Students must be advised by the college in order to obtain permission to enroll before registration.
In the meantime, if you’re interested in applying for one of the defined roles, you can apply below. If you have any questions, you can reach out to Brian Kinghorn, who will serve as the Faculty Mentor for the team. Dr. Kinghorn will forward names of selected team members to the college prior to Honors Advising and Priority Registration so that these students can be permitted to enroll.
For examples of Honors Internships, please see the presentations here.
Living and Learning Communities
The “houses” provided to students by the Office of Housing and Residence Life offer opportunities for student residents to create purposeful links between academic, residential, and social components of their college experience while living together in a community with shared interests.
Honors College Policy Making
If you really want to get under the hood of the Honors College, these are for you! Get engaged and have a real impact on the policy and practices of the college.
Study Abroad Experiences
The Honors College encourages students to consider studying abroad as a way of encouraging creative, critical inquiry and respect for a multiplicity of thoughts, experiences, and identities. Study abroad aids students in becoming socially conscious, responsible leaders and lifelong learners who are actively engaged in the acquisition and application of knowledge for a greater good.
In recognition of the value of study abroad experience, the Honors College will waive up to 6 of the required General Honors credit hours for study abroad experiences for which the student receives academic credit through Marshall. To receive a waiver of 3 honors credits, students must earn a minimum of 3 transfer credits and the study abroad experience must have a duration of at least 3 weeks. A total of 6 credits of waived honors credit can be awarded for a semester abroad with full time enrollment of 12 credits or more. Students must request the waiver by submitting the Study Abroad Honors Credit Waiver Petition form available on the Student Forms page. In order to receive a waiver of General Honors credits, students must submit the form to describe enhanced academic experiences that they expect to have before they leave and another after they return to provide justification for why these credits deserve an honors credit waiver after they return.
NOTE: No more than 6 hours TOTAL (for any reason, for any student) can be waived from requirements in the Honors Curriculum.
Scholarly & Creative Projects
The Honors College supports the creation of Departmental Honors in all majors interested in developing especially robust scholarly and creative experiential learning opportunities in their programs. The illustration below is a significantly more challenging pathway to completion of the required capstone that entails creation of committee to oversee a thesis project. The experience is available to both Honors and non-honors students based on the criteria stated by the department. As of today, there are two majors in the College of Liberal Arts that have developed Departmental Honors in consultation with the Honors College. The Honors College is prepared to accept these defined Departmental Honors credits toward completion of the Honors Curriculum for Honors students in good standing with the college who are in these majors. The college would be willing to do so for other major programs who develop similar opportunities for their students.
In the first term, the student will prepare a study plan and literature review for an independent research project; at the end of the term, this work must be presented to a committee of at least three faculty members who will together determine the grade.The prerequisites for pursuing the second term of the honors option include: an “A” in the first term, a GPA in all concluded major program classes of a minimum of 3.5, and written permission by the advisor. In the second semester, the student will conduct the proposed research project and report her/his findings (the report will ordinarily be a written thesis, but can be supplemented by presentations in other media–an exhibition, a film, etc.). At the end of the term, this work must be presented to a committee of at least three faculty members who will together determine the grade. The grade “A” for the work in the second term will be recognized on the students’ official transcript as “Graduating with Honors” in either Anthropology or Sociology.
More Departmental Honors opportunities can be expected if other major programs work to develop them for their students. Interested faculty can reach out to the college with proposals and students can help by showing their support for development of Departmental Honors in the departments of their majors. The Honors College would be very happy to help.