THE MILLERSVILLE UNIVERSITY HONORS PROGRAM ADMISSIONS STANDARDS AND ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS
The University Honors Program provides challenging and enriching educational experiences for Millersville University's most talented and motivated students. Those who elect to join the program are encouraged and guided by their faculty mentors to realize fully their academic and professional potential and to raise their sights and ambitions beyond what they felt was possible for them to accomplish. The program is designed to give the students the knowledge, skills and self-confidence they will need to prosper in graduate and professional school as well as in the world of business.
Designed to fulfill the University-wide General Education requirements, the program is open to undergraduate students in all majors. It provides honors students with a core of stimulating and demanding liberal arts courses. These courses are intended to introduce honors students to the intellectual underpinnings of Western culture while developing their ability to think critically, to do independent research, and to write in a style which is both lucid and analytical. The core requirements explore the evolution of the following: the Western intellectual and literary traditions, mathematical theory and applications, and scientific methods in theory and practice. These requirements include an honors composition course and an advanced writing experience in the form of a senior thesis. The core courses are intended to encourage a commitment to academic pursuit among our best students while providing them with a common intellectual bond. The core is to be augmented with a variety of honors General Education electives from which the student may choose to complete the requirements of the program. The majority of these courses put emphasis upon research and writing.
Honors courses have limited enrollments. This creates an intimate and stimulating learning environment where students from varied backgrounds and disciplines can develop a sense of intellectual camaraderie. While honors courses involve both depth and breadth of study and stress independent research and writing, the workloads required are manageable. The primary concern of the faculty teaching in the program is the cultivation of the academic talents of the honors students. Through formal study and informal advisement, honors students are encouraged to realize their intellectual and professional potential.
Entering freshmen who have combined Scholastic Aptitude Test scores of 1200 or better and are in the top 10% of their high school graduating class are eligible to join the University Honors Program. As motivation, enthusiasm, and commitment to learning are often better predictors of success in the program than test scares, students who do, riot meet these formal criteria but who are seriously interested in participating in the program-may apply to the Director for admission. In order that no superior student be denied the opportunity to participate in the program, all students who have earned a grade point average of 3.35 at the University are eligible to enroll in honors courses and to join the program. Other interested students may be admitted to honors classes with the permission of the Director.
Completion of the program requires that a minimum of 30 hours of honors credits be taken. Students must pass honors courses with grades of A or B to receive honors credit for their work.
Honors Composition (HNRS ENGL 110)
An accelerated composition course which presumes basic writing competence. The course emphasizes the development of research and analytical skills. Students who have already demonstrated competency in ENGL 110 may be exempted from that honors competency requirement with the written approval of the Director.
Quantitative/Analytical Reasoning Component (QARC): To be fulfilled by completing either Honors Calculus I (HNRS MATH 163) or Honors Applied Calculus I and II (HNRS MATH 163-1666).
HNRS MATH 163 provides a comprehensive introduction to the concepts of calculus and is primarily aimed at students majoring in mathematics and the sciences. The notions of limit, definite and indefinite integral and derivative are developed in detail. Additional time is devoted to the underlying philosophy of mathematics as well as to how to use the calculus in a modern computational environment.
HNRS MATH 166 is designed to provide the non-technical honors student with an introductory survey of calculus as applied to the business, social, and life sciences. Frequent use of relevant and factual applications demonstrate how differential calculus serves as an indispensable tool for modeling and problem solving.
HNRS MATH 166 is a continuation of HNRS MATH 165. It emphasizes integral calculus and differential equations and their applications in the real world. Honors students in non-technical majors are required to pass both MATH 1 655 and MATH 168 with grades of A or B In order to fulfill the honors calculus requirement. Students who have already demonstrated competency in the first semester of the Calculus (Math 161) may be exempted from that honors competency requirement with the written approval of the Director.
Credits earned in HNRS ENGL 110, HNRS MATH 163, HNRS MATH 166 and HNRS MATH 166 count towards the total of 30 hours of honors credits required to graduate in the University Honors Program when grades of A or B are earned. Honors credit is not awarded to students who demonstrate competence in these areas by other means.
The Western. Literary Tradition I or II (Honors/English 238 or 239)
HNRS ENGL 238 is an English course specially designed to introduce honors students to mayor works of the Western literary tradition. The course studies the works of writers from the Ancient World through the seventeenth century.
HNRS ENGL 239 studies works of literature beginning with the Neoclassical period and ending with Modernism.
These courses may be taken independently of one another. While only one of these courses is required for graduation in the Honors Program, students are strongly encouraged to take both courses. Together, these courses provide the student with an understanding of the literary foundations of Western civilization essential to a well-rounded education. In addition, the courses fulfill the General Education Humanities/Fine Arts requirement of two courses in one discipline and help fulfill both Writing courses and upper-level General Education course requirements.
The Western Intellectual Tradition I or 11 (Honors/Social Sciences 201 or 202).
HNRS SSHE is an introduction to the main currents of thought in Western civilization from the Ancient World through the Enlightenment which focuses on seminal thinkers and their impact on European culture.
HNRS SSCI 202 is an introduction to the main currents of thought in Western civilization since the French Revolution, again focusing on seminal thinkers and their impact on the Western civilization.
These courses may be taken independently of one another. While only one of these courses is required for graduation in the Honors Program, students are strongly encouraged to take both courses. Together, these courses provide the student with an understanding of the historical and intellectual foundations of Western civilization essential to a well-rounded education. In addition, the courses fulfill the General Education Social Science requirements of two courses in one discipline and help fulfill both Writing courses and upper-level General Education course requirements.
An Honors Laboratory Science Course
The honors laboratory science courses include an hour-long seminar. The hour will provide an opportunity to consider the intellectual and historical context in which the core ideas of the course developed and to explore and discuss in greater depth those ideas raised in the lecture and laboratory components. Honors laboratory science seminars are offered by the Biology, Chemistry, Earth Science and Physics departments to accompany select laboratory science courses. HONORS/BIOLOGY 108, the Biology seminar, is offered on a regular basis and, when taken with Biology 100, satisfies the honors laboratory science requirement. HONORS/PHYSICS 230, the Physics seminar is taken by arrangement when the student is enrolled in Physics 231. Chemistry and Earth Science seminars are available by arrangement.
THE EARTH IN SPACE (HNRS ESCI 202) is an honors laboratory science course for honors students with non-technical majors. It is designed to be taken during or after HNRS MATH 166. The course uses basic calculus to provide a mathematical model for the analysis of scientific concepts drawn from classical and modern physics, astronomy and cosmology, and the earth and atmospheric sciences. Conclusions made from these analyses are tested by scientific observation, experiment and theory. Prerequisites: MATH 165 or the equivalent introductory calculus course.
An Honors Perspectives Course.
A variety of interdisciplinary perspectives courses are offered on a regular basis.
An Honors Senior Thesis
An honors student planning to take HNRS 499, Honors Senior Thesis, shall take HNRS 489, HNRS Independent Study, the semester before taking HNRS 489. The principal purpose of HNRS 489 is to survey the background literature of the thesis topic, assemble a comprehensive bibliography and initial thesis proposal and write an analytical bibliographical essay. The thesis title, a one paragraph summary of the proposed thesis and the names of the proposed advisor and committee members must be submitted to the University Honors Program Committee for approval no later than the end of the junior year. The defense committee must include faculty knowledgeable in the area of the thesis, and at least one member of the committee must be outside the department of the thesis advisor. A representative or designee from the University Honors Program Committee must also be present at the defense. Students with demonstrable extenuating circumstances may apply to the Honors Program Director for permission to take both HNRS 489 and HNRS 499 during the same semester. A grade of A or B must be earned in these courses for them to carry honors credit. The thesis will fulfill the general education upper division writing course requirement. After the thesis has been successfully defended, the student must submit two copies of the corrected thesis to the Honors Program office. One of these copies will be bound and added to the permanent collection of the University Library.
Students who have successfully defended their theses are encouraged to enter them in the competition for the prestigious Breidenstine Award given to the student who has written the outstanding thesis of the year. Theses should be submitted to the Honors and Awards Committee in care of the Dean of Graduate Studies.
A minimum of nine hours of Honors General Education Electives must be taken.
A minimum of two honors courses must be taken in each of the following General Education academic areas: Mathematics/Science, Humanities/Fine Arts, and Social Science.
A total of thirty credits of honors work is required for graduation in the University Honors Program. If the above requirements are met by course selections totaling fewer than 30 honors credits, additional honors electives must be taken to fulfill this requirement.
Although exposure to a foreign culture is not required for graduation from the University, honors students are strongly encouraged to use at least one of their honors electives to gain an understanding of the culture and mores of peoples in other parts of the world. Honors courses dealing with foreign cultures are offered on a regular basis.
Although neither the University nor the Honors Program requires competence in a foreign language for graduation, students who are contemplating graduate school should give strong consideration to achieving reading competence in at least one foreign language.
Academic Standards and Graduation Requirements
A progressive minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) requirement shall govern student retention in the program. Students must achieve a 2.75 GPA after taking 15 credit hours to remain in the program. Any student whose GPA falls between. 2.75 and 3.00 after the completion of 15 credit hours will be placed an probation in the Honors Program and must raise his or her GPA to 3.00 by the time 45 credit hours have been completed to remain in good standing in the program. All University Honors students must attain a cumulative GPA of 3.25 by the time they have completed 60 credit hours of work. To graduate with the University Honors Baccalaureate Degree a student must complete all work required in the program with grades of A or B and must qualify to graduate with honors (3.35 GPA).
Students who have not fulfilled the requirements for graduation in the University Honors Program are required to take honors courses in order to remain in good standing in the program. Students failing to take honors courses for two consecutive semesters will be dropped from the program.
Students who plan to graduate with the University Honors Baccalaureate must notify the Director of the program of their intentions no later than the end of their Junior year. Accompanying this notification must be a proposed senior thesis topic approved by the faculty member who has agreed to supervise it. The senior thesis, successfully defended, must be submitted to the Director of the program no later than two weeks before the date of graduation in order for the student to graduate with the Honors Baccalaureate.