Washburn Observatory

Honors in the Major

Requirements for Honors in the Linguistics Major

Students may graduate with Honors in the Linguistics Major by meeting high academic benchmarks, taking some required courses for honors, and completing a year-long independent honors project. The Honors in the Major program for Linguistics requires the following:

Academic Excellence

  • GPA of 3.3 or higher in all university coursework
  • GPA of 3.5 or higher in all Linguistics courses, and all courses from other departments counting towards the Linguistics major

Coursework with concurrent Honors enrollment

Two Linguistics courses must be taken for honors. To take a Linguistics course for honors, students enroll in the regular course, and enroll concurrently for 1 credit of Honors Tutorial:

  • Ling 481/482: Junior Honors Tutorial – 1 credit (x2)

A total of 2 Honors Tutorial credits are required. (Despite the title, the “Junior” honors tutorial can be taken at any grade level.) Typically students take foundational courses such as Ling 310 (Phonology), Ling 322 (Morphology), or Ling 330 (Syntax) for honors. Students must obtain the professor’s permission to add the honors credit to a course, and need to be authorized to register by the program administrator.

The requirements for the honors credit are determined in consultation with the professor, but typically involve a research paper or project that goes beyond the basic requirements of the course. A grade of B or better is required for both courses taken for honors.

Independent Honors Thesis

The core portion of Honors in the Major is the honors thesis. Students complete a year-long in-depth research project, typically in their senior year. Students must enroll in a 3-credit section of Honors Seminar-Senior Thesis each semester of their senior year, for a total of 6 credits.

  • Ling 681: Honors Seminar – Senior Thesis – (3 credits in Fall)
  • Ling 682: Honors Seminar – Senior Thesis (3 credits in Spring)

Students work closely with a particular professor at all stages of the honors thesis, from development through final write-up. The professor serves as the student’s honors advisor, and must be a Language Sciences faculty member. Both sections of Honors Seminar must be completed with grades of B or better.

Note that the Honors in the Major sequence requires at least two years to complete, and students must embark on the program while still taking foundational courses. If you are considering declaring Honors in the Major, make sure to consult with the Undergraduate Advisor as soon as possible. It is not possible to add Honors credits retroactively to courses taken in prior semesters.

Declaring Honors in the Major

Make an appointment with the Undergraduate Advisor to declare. Honors courses must be chosen, relevant permissions obtained from professors to allow enrollment in honors sections, and an Honors in the Major Declaration Form submitted to the L&S Honors Program Office located in Washburn Observatory.

Note that Honors in the Major is different from Honors in the Liberal Arts. Honors in the Linguistics Major involves taking Linguistics courses for honors, while Honors in the Liberal Arts is a separate program that involves taking breadth/general courses for honors. Contact the L&S Honors Program Office directly to declare Honors in the Liberal Arts.

See the Linguistics Guide Entry for full details about Honors in the Major.