The Honors Thesis is a written manuscript that presents a piece of original scholarship conducted under the guidance of a faculty mentor. For most Honors students, completion of the Honors thesis will be the climax of their college careers. Working on a thesis project provides ways of developing the ability to investigate a problem and to do serious writing, research, or creative work that will provide a foundation for work in their chosen profession.
By completing an Honors Thesis, you will develop knowledge, skills and initiative that are essential to meet future challenges. You will develop self-knowledge and new personal resources. When you are pushed to the limit of your energy and creativity, you will discover new ways of addressing problems and organizing time. This training is invaluable and you will often look back to realize just how much difference it made in your professional preparation.
In addition to independent work, the project involves a close relationship between the student and the faculty members, particularly with the professor supervising your scholarly work. Such sustained interpersonal interaction contributes greatly to the quality of the experience, leads to more intimate and informative letters of recommendation, and sometimes leads to lifelong professional relationships.
Typically, preparation for the Honors Thesis starts in the junior year and finishes in the senior year. In the spring semester of their junior year, students find a mentor and write a proposal for their project which must be approved by the Research Committee of the Honors Council. They then conduct research or scholarship for their project, usually into the Fall semester of their senior year. They write up the project and present their work at the SURE Conference in the spring semester, as they graduate with their Honors degree.
The Honors Thesis process is documented in the Thesis Handbook, which also contains appropriate forms for students and faculty mentors.