Frequently Asked Questions

Why is there a General Honors Program at the University of Miami?
The General Honors Program was established to encourage and challenge our outstanding students with an academically challenging course of study. Through smaller class sizes taught by exceptional faculty, the General Honors Program seeks to develop in our best students their natural gifts and abilities.
What are the benefits for qualified students to participate in the General Honors Program?
Honors classes are smaller and focused more on why something is rather than what it is, participation in the social branch of the General Honors Program, the Honors Students’ Association (HSA), which enables general honors students to express themselves outside the classroom environment, if you complete the required number of courses to remain active in the Program, you will graduate with the notation “General Honors” on both your diploma and your transcript, and the opportunity to participate in our research program.
I was not initially invited into the General Honors Program. Can I join the program later?
The General Honors Program is no longer admitting new students.
What courses do I take to satisfy the General Honors requirements?

You are required to take a minimum of 24 credits in order to complete the requirement. This applies to all students who joined the Program. Of the 24 credits, at least 12 must be outside your major (this is our way of encouraging you to challenge yourself outside your primary area of interest). If you should have two or more majors, then you may use no more than 9 credits in each major. Of the 24 credits, at least 12 credits must be at the 200 level or higher (regardless of major). Finally, you must earn a grade of 'B' or better in order to receive credit toward the 24 credit requirement.

What about the 'B' minimum grade?
All students who joined the program must earn a grade of 'B' or better in your honors course in order for it to satisfy the 24 Honors credit requirement.
What if I get a 'B-', 'C+', 'C' , etc. in my honors course?
You will receive credit toward your overall graduation requirement, but you may not apply the credits in that course toward your 24 Honors credit requirement.
What recognition do I receive for participating in the program?
There are three direct forms of recognition for students who complete the General Honors Program:
  1. Recognition at the annual Honors Day Convocation
  2. Presentation of a medallion at the annual Honors Day Convocation so that it may be worn with your regalia at graduation ceremonies on the day after the Honors Day Convocation, and
  3. Imprint of the notation 'General Honors' on your diploma and transcript.
What are the differences between General Honors, Departmental Honors, and University Honors?
The General Honors distinction is administered by the Honors Program Office. One receives General Honors by taking certain courses designated as honors. The General Honors Program Office keeps a detailed record of your progress toward General Honors. By contrast, the Departmental Honors distinction is administered by the respective departments. The departments are responsible for informing the General Honors Program Office that a student is to receive Departmental Honors. Thus, the General Honors Program Office is not directly involved in Departmental Honors. University Honors (summa cum laude, magna cum laude and cum laude) will be determined by a minimum GPA unique to the school or college from which the student is graduating.
Are there any direct scholarships available through the General Honors Program?
No. However, the General Honors Program Office promotes nationally advertised prestigious awards such as the Truman, Marshall, Rhodes and Fulbright.
How are honors courses selected at UM?
Each undergraduate department selects the courses to be designated as honors. The undergraduate department then informs the General Honors Program Office what will be offered in a given semester.
Who chooses the professors who teach the honors courses?

The selection of professors for all undergraduate courses at UM is made by the respective departments. After the department has made its choice, the General Honors Program Office is informed of the assignment.

What does the General Honors Program offer to those of us who want to be involved in student activities?
HSA is the social arm of the General Honors Program, and is a student organization that focuses on activities both on and off campus and seeks to involve students in a variety of programs, guest lectures, volunteerism, etc. Members have the opportunity to meet and network with new and returning general honors students, who understand the issues and concerns unique to general honors students.
I plan to study abroad next year; may I receive honors credit for courses I take there?
Honors students who participate in the UM Study Abroad Program can designate one course per semester as honors.
If I cannot take a course designated as honors this semester, will it jeopardize my standing in the General Honors Program?
Not necessarily. You may simply take two honors courses that are 3 credits each next semester to compensate. As a rule, you are expected to take at least two honors courses (6 credits) per academic year so that you have a total of 24 honors credits by the time you expect to be graduated. If you fail to take 6 honors credits in any given year, you may be placed on an inactive status.
What happens if I am put on an inactive status in the General Honors Program?

First, do not panic! Second, come to the General Honors Program Office and find out the reason for the inactive status. For example if it is because you failed to receive 6 honors credits in an academic year, you may be reinstated by planning to double up on honors courses for the next two semesters. The important thing is to contact us as soon as you have received a notice of your inactive status and work out a plan to catch up.

I finally completed that “I” (“Incomplete”) in an honors course last semester; do I need to do anything else?

Yes. You have the responsibility to notify the General Honors Program Office of the satisfactory completion of the course; the Honors Program Office does not automatically receive such information.

Is there an opportunity for general honors students to participate in research?
Yes! General honors students may participate in the General Honors Program Summer Research Internship. Approximately 20 students are selected. Students are required to work 6 to 8 weeks during the summer, and receive 3 Honors credits, a grade from the supervising professor in the fall semester, and a stipend of $1,500 at the completion of the research assignment.