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Credit By Contract

What is an Honors Credit by Contract?

An Honors Contract is a mechanism for adding an “honors dimension” to a course that is not already an honors class. The contract project should add an academic dimension to the course by introducing new material or by allowing the student to go into greater depth than normally required in some aspect of the course. A member of the faculty must supervise the contract.

How are Honors Contracts related to grades?

The Honors Contract will not affect the student’s grade in the class. To receive honors credit, however, the students must receive a grade of A or B in the course, in addition to completing the contract. The advising faculty member must verify that the student has met all of the requirements set forth in the original contract proposal, prior to finals week in the semester.

Are All Honors Students Eligible?

To qualify for “Honors Credit by Contract,” an Honors student should have completed a minimum of seven units of Honors courses, and be considered in “active status” (see policy regarding Active Status and Probation).

How Many Contracts Are Possible in a Semester?

One Honors Contract is permitted in a given semester. Additional requests are reviewed on a case by case basis.


How much work should an Honors Contract involve?

The Honors Contract project should be one that can be finished with 20 to 25 hours of work. In addition, the contract should explain how the student plans to present their project to their peers either at Common Day of Learning or a local, regional, or national conference. If a student is invited to participate in a professor’s research project in a way that will involve substantially greater amounts of time, a separate course for honors credit—such as Honors Directed/Supervised Research—is appropriate in place of an Honors Contract. Students are required to submit a Credit by Contract Proposal, and Final Project Approval form and project to receive honors credits.

Examples of Honors Contract projects include:


Application check list:

  1. Obtain the Honors Contract forms from the Honors College office, or download a request for Honors Credit by Contract (PDF).
  2. Meet with the course faculty member and agree to the terms of the contract.
  3. Develop contract proposal, and submit to course faculty member for review.
  4. Submit the Credit by Contract Proposal Form and course syllabus to the Honors College office by the second week of the semester that the contract will apply.
  5. Complete work under the guidance and mentorship of course faculty member.

Honors Contract work must be completed by prior to finals week at the end of the semester in which the course is taken. For senior students, all work must be completed one month prior to graduation date.

Final credit check list:

  1. Obtain course faculty member’s signature on Final Project Approval Form (see page 3).
  2. Submit a copy of the completed Credit by Contract project and Final Project Approval form to the Honors College office. All projects must be submitted by the end of (prior to finals) of the semester in which the work was completed. Contracts submitted after the above due dates will not be reviewed or approved. The work is review by the Dean of the Honors College, and completion is noted on the student’s Honors records.

Note: An “incomplete” Honors Contract is permitted ONLY in those instances in which the student receives a grade of “I” at the time the course grade is submitted. The Honors Contract then must be completed at or before the time the professor changes the “I” grade by submitting a Change-of-Grade form to One Stop: Undergraduate Registrar.