University Honors Program
phone: (208) 885-6147
Idaho Commons 315
University of Idaho
875 Perimeter Drive MS 2533
Moscow, ID 83844-2533
Student studying in library

Frequently Asked Questions

“Like most people, I joined the Honors Program because of the courses, but then I learned it was so much more than that. There is always someone to help me with homework or keep me motivated. I love that I can get solid advice from others who care about me. I love that I have friends who understand my passion for knowledge and adventure within the dorms, LLCs, Greek system, and off campus. Because of the community within the Honors Program, I am surrounded by people who are passionate and make me want to be a better person.”
Jennifer Downen '17
Mechanical Engineering
Emmett, ID
  • Why should I join the Honors Program?
    According to honors students, among the most compelling reasons are

    1. Chances to make friends and exchange ideas with other UHP students
    2. Small, stimulating classes taught in a discussion format by selected faculty
    3. Distinctive extracurricular offerings, including student leadership opportunities, "Fireside Chats" with faculty, free chamber music series tickets, cultural enrichment and other trips and service activities
    4. Priority registration privileges
    5. Scholarships for select students
    6. An exceptional course of study, learning and research in advance of graduate school or various professional and career paths
    More than 470 students are active in the UHP.

    We encourage you to consider the benefits of the program by applying for admission today.
  • Are honors courses more demanding than non-honors courses?
    Honors classes offer opportunities to explore subjects in significant depth, challenging students through discussion and writing.

    Students find that their education and academic performance are enhanced by strong mentoring relationships with faculty devoted to enabling each student to fulfill his or her potential, and by the lively, participation-based modes of learning in small classes.

    Honors students generally average higher grades in honors classes than in non-honors classes.

    Honors classes are graded relative to the abilities of the students. You must earn your grade, but you are not held to unfair standards relative to students in non-honors classes.

    We think you will thrive by taking advantage of these modes of learning and mentoring.

    “Honors provided a more intellectually challenging experience for me while in college. I most enjoyed the honors classes that explored the teachings of famous philosophers (Honors Philosophy), different religious practices (Honors ISEM Sacred Journey) and Greek tragedies (Honors English, Western Literature). These specific classes involved more in depth thinking, discussions and writing, all very valuable for an individual.”

    Susana Ruiz-Gallegos ’15
    Sociology and Psychology
    Boise, ID 

  • How will the Honors Program fit with my major?
    Honors students are enrolled in nearly every degree program at the University of Idaho.

    Many of the honors courses fill the university’s general education requirements. Others can be applied to a student’s major.

    Students in especially demanding majors may find it challenging in some semesters to fit a desired honors course into their class schedule. But, experience shows that advising from a student's major advisor and the honors director can provide the support needed to remain active in the honors program, earn an Honors Core Award or complete an Honors Certificate.

  • What makes the honors curriculum distinctive?
    The honors curriculum encourages students to think outside the box, fostering knowledge, initiative, and creativity within the students.

    Lower-division honors core courses enable students to learn with their peers in small classes taught by honors faculty. These classes also fulfill requirements in the university's general education core curriculum.

    Moreover, each year the program offers innovative upper-division seminars for further exploration, with each class limited to seventeen students.

    Recent and forthcoming topics include "Energy Issues," "Banned Books," "Nanotechnology," "Geography of Conflict," "Music in Film," "Africa in Rebellion," "History of Gangs in America," "The Uncommon Traveler," "Crossing Borders with the Graphic Novel," "The Zombie Apocalypse and International Issues" and "Politics and Film."
  • Are there residence halls on campus specifically for honors students?
    Yes! UI honors students take advantage of a variety of communities and living groups, including specific honors communities.

    The McCoy Hall community is a first year student living option found in Theophilus Tower. Scholars LLC is a living option for upper-classmen within the university’s Living Learning Communities.

    Honors housing provides students with the advantage of meeting and living with other students who maintain high academic standards and who are also interested in being involved in extra-curricular activities and campus life.

    Residents share a variety of academic, social and cultural enrichment opportunities.

    Honors Program members have priority in reserving rooms in McCoy and Scholars LLC residences. Reserve your room now.
  • Does the UHP offer scholarship and tuition waiver support?
    Yes. The University Honors Program offers a limited number of awards and scholarships for Idaho residents and WUE-rate waivers of nonresident tuition. For more information, see the scholarships page.
  • Who receives priority registration privileges?
    Students with a 3.3 cumulative/institutional GPA who have completed prior to the current semester a minimum of:

    • 3 HON-designated credits* in the first semester
    • 6 HON-designated credits by the end of the second semester
    • 9 HON-designated credits by the end of the fourth semester
    • 12 HON-designated credits by the end of the sixth semester
    shall receive permission to register with the first group of seniors.

    * New members who enroll for at least 3 HON-designated credits during their first semester in the program also qualify for priority registration.

  • May honors students participate in study abroad or student exchange programs?
    Honors students are encouraged to apply for exchanges to other American universities or to universities abroad.

    More than 20 honors students study abroad each year. Students have participated in semester or year-long international exchange programs during recent academic years to study in Australia, Chile, China, Ecuador, England, France, Ghana, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Nepal, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Scotland, Spain and Sweden.

    Many of these students have benefited from their UHP and UI scholarships and from the university's International Experience Grants (typically $1,000 per semester).

    Students who participate in a one or two-semester study abroad experience may receive an Honors Core Award or Honors Certificate at a reduced credit requirement. For more information, see the study abroad course contract.
  • Can I be in the Honors Program and in a sorority or fraternity?
    Of course! We have honors students every year who choose to join Greek life and still remain active in the program.

    Greek students can still take advantage of all the honors program and honors community have to offer including courses, activities, events and more.