Winter Elliott, director
Program of Study Brenau offers to incoming freshmen of proven academic excellence enrollment in an Honors Program that spans the four years of baccalaureate education and leads to graduation with one of three noteworthy distinctions: Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program, High Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program and Highest Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program.
Students who accept invitations into the program are assured entry into special honors sections of those liberal education courses appropriate to their interests and talents. These special courses are designed to address the unique educational needs of academically advanced and highly motivated students. To continue in the program, students must maintain a 3.3 GPA in their Honors courses and a 3.3 in their overall coursework. Currently enrolled students and transfer students may apply to the Director of Honors for entry into the program if they have a 3.5 GPA.
Honors sections of the following liberal education courses are available: American Government, Biology, English, Philosophy, Psychology and History. In addition, special English survey courses are available as part of the Honors Program and Honors students may receive Honors credit for work in art, theatre, music and dance history courses. Students are encouraged to take as much Honors coursework as appropriate to their interests and schedules.
In addition, Honors Program students are asked to enroll in at least one of the special portal seminars in their first four semesters.
After they have taken at least six liberal education honors courses, students may complete their studies in the junior and senior years with the special courses discussed in the undergraduate course description section of this Catalog.
An International Honors Experience course is also available to Honors Program students and is described in the undergraduate course description section of the catalog. This course is optional and may be repeated for credit.
In addition to the Honors Program described above, a freshman and sophomore Honors Research Program is offered to highly qualified Honors students by special invitation based on SAT scores and GPA’s in high school. Freshman and sophomores with a 3.75 GPA may be admitted by application to the Director of Honors.
In this Honors Research Program, students will have the opportunity to explore a topic of especial interest, in a one-on-one setting, with a designated faculty mentor. Students in the Honors Research Program may take from one to four of their Honors research courses. These courses are discussed in the undergraduate course description section of this Catalog.
The following graduation distinctions are available:
- For students who have maintained a 3.3 GPA in their Honors courses and a 3.3 overall, three awards become available. If the student successfully completes the special Junior Year Interdisciplinary Seminar, she will be awarded a certificate indicating that she is a graduate with Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program.
- An even higher distinction is possible. Following completion of and with the required GPAs, the student, with the Director of Honors and another faculty mentor, will define, research, and write an Honors thesis in a field of interest to the student. If awarded a grade of A or B, this two-semester project will result in the prestigious graduation designation of High Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program.
- Highest Honors in the Brenau University Honors Program is the most prestigious Honors Program award at graduation. In addition to the requirements for High Honors, the student will demonstrate her commitment to the Honors Program in three ways: by taking an additional two Honors courses; by adapting a Service Learning, Leadership, or Internship requirement to Honors-level work by contract; and by upgrading, by special arrangement, to Honors-level quality a course in the student’s major or minor. This graduation distinction is open to all Honors Program students and emphasizes breadth and depth of inquiry rather than extra coursework.