The Honors program at BVU is designed to encourage you to develop your academic talents beyond the regular curriculum and to discover what your are capable of. One way this is accomplished is through the honors research project. In this project, you engage in challenging research and creative activity under the direction of a faculty mentor. This section sets out guidelines to assist you and your faculty mentor as you design, propose, conduct, evaluate, and present an original scholarly or creative project.
An honors project is more than a big course paper. It is an original undertaking sustained over the course of several semesters. The project begins as a proposal in HONR 300 (Honors Proposal), is conducted for HONR 350 (Honors Research), and is finally completed when you present your findings in HONR 498 (Honors Capstone). Projects must be designed and executed especially for the program and cannot be mere revisions of an earlier study. However, it is acceptable for your honors project to serve as a substantial extension of previous work, provided the honors project itself requires considerable additional research, testing, analysis, interpretation, or implementation. An honors project must comprise a relatively self-contained component of the larger body of work of which it is a part. If you wish to build on previous efforts, you should discuss your ideas with your faculty mentor and with the program director. You must demonstrate the cohesiveness and completeness of your honors project in the proposal document. The final decision whether a project meets requirements lies with the honors program director.
Honors projects can be individual endeavors in which you work with a single faculty mentor to complete the project. Likewise, a project can be a collaborative effort including several students and/or faculty mentors in various combinations. Team projects provide an opportunity for a highly motivated group to complete a much more complex or involved project than would be possible for an individual.
In addition to the routine components of an honors proposal, students wishing to engage in collaborative projects must specify 1) the specific rationale behind the decision to collaborate on this particular project, 2) the unique intellectual or creative contribution each member brings to the project, 3) how work is to be distributed equally among team members, and 4) a procedure for enforcing individual accountability to group tasks. Collaborative projects involving students from multiple disciplines and schools are also encouraged. Students wishing to work on team projects should consult with the honors program director before beginning the proposal process.
You should expect to:
Your faculty mentor will provide you with significant intellectual guidance and personalized mentoring to assist you in the design, execution, and assessment of your project. You should talk to the honors program director if you are worried about your grades.
When you join the honors program, you agree to maintain a 3.5 cumulative GPA or higher, enroll in the required classes, attend all meetings called by the program director, and to participate actively in the life of the community. If your cumulative GPA falls below a 3.5, you will receive a letter informing you that you are on probation in the program. You will have one semester to bring your cumulative GPA back up, at which time you will again be considered in good standing. If after one semester on probation, you are unable to meet the GPA requirements, you will receive a letter informing you that you have been dismissed from the program. The Honors program director and the Coordinator of Honors & Dean’s Fellows will work to help you find the resources you need to succeed. You should come talk to the honors program director if you become worried about your grades.