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Program Requirements

Honors Core + General Studies, Departmental, and Co-Curricular Honors Options

 Honors students walking at the Spring 2016 commencement graduation ceremony

To graduate with MSU Denver Honors Program distinction, each student completes Honors coursework and an Honors thesis, and maintains a 3.3 undergraduate GPA.

The Honors Program curriculum requires 21 units of approved courses and activities. Each student is able to design their own path through the Honors curriculum by completing the Honors core courses and combining a selection of academic and co-curricular options.


 

 


Honors General Studies Options

Honors students can select from general studies options to complete academic course requirements. Many of these options can also fulfill degree program and university requirements. 


Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): ENG 1010 or ENG 1009 with a grade of C- or better; Student in the Honors program or approval by the Honors Director

Catalog Description: This is a course for students in the Honors Program and addresses the process of writing extended essays supported by research. The course includes an introduction to research methods, practice in critical reading, thinking, and writing across the disciplines, integration of source material, and the conventions of MLA and APA styles of documentation. Students can expect to do a series of shorter writing and research assignments leading to the longer, documented paper and will write reflectively on their writing process.

Note: Because of continual development in research technology and techniques, credits ten years or older, from any institution, will not transfer. ENG 1021 requires a grade of C- or better to fulfill the General Studies requirement.

General Studies: Written Communication 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course integrates both the theory and practical skills of topic research, composition, delivery, and criticism of public speaking. Skill development includes effective public presentation strategies and audience analysis. Students develop critical listening skills by evaluating their own public-speaking style, as well as the effectiveness of their peers and professional speakers. This course builds public-speaking confidence, and introduces the student to the power of public rhetoric in social and professional contexts. May be taught as hybrid.

General Studies: Oral Communication 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of the fundamental concepts of human nutrition, including digestion, absorption, metabolism, and the function of nutrients as they relate to human health and disease.

General Studies: Natural and Physical Sciences

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: In the Modern Period, Critical Theory emerges as a decidedly multidisciplinary field that challenges the foundations of the existing social order through in-depth analysis of capitalism, culture, power, the family, and the individual. This course provides an overview of the development of the field of Critical Theory and examines some of its major currents. Topics may include: Psychoanalytic Criticism, Marxist Criticism, Discourse Theory, Feminist Criticism/Gender Studies/Queer Theory, Deconstruction, Race Theory, Postmodernism, New Historicism, Cultural Studies, Narratology, and Digital Media Studies. B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: Arts and Humanities

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course studies historical works that have had a literary, philosophical and artistic impact on the notion of the self. How these works have transformed the relationship of the individual to the world will be examined from different perspectives, and students are encouraged to employ critical thinking to make thematic connections across disciplines. B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: Arts and Humanities

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: This course is an interdisciplinary inquiry where students learn about the dynamics of social change. Important examples of radical social transformation provide the historical backdrop for the discussion. Students explore definitions and theoretical models that can be used to explain and institute change. Students are also encouraged to learn about and connect with community-based organizations involved in creating change and promoting social justice. Some sections of this course may be offered as Service Learning courses. B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: S & B II

Credits: 3 

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: In this course students learn about the initial discoveries that sparked new scientific fields and about the subsequent revolutions caused by such discoveries. By examining the role of the scientific method in the production of knowledge, students improve their own scientific literacy and learn to critically examine historical scientific experiments. Students investigate the methodologies used, the theories and hypotheses tested, and manipulate original data created in selected experiments. Course discussions also examine the complex relationship between science and world views. B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: Natural and Physical Sciences

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): Enrollment in the Honors Program or Permission from the Honors Director.

Catalog Description: Technology’s impact on human life emerges in a wide array of fields such as agriculture, medicine, warfare, politics, education, transportation, space exploration, communication, data science and robotics. In this interdisciplinary course, students consider definitions of technology and examine the historical relationship between humans and technology. Course discussions also explore debates on the ethical uses of technologies and how technological developments impact our lives as individuals and collectively. B- or better required for Honors credit.

General Studies: S & B I

Honors Core Courses

Core courses taken by all honors students include 2 interdisciplinary Honors Colloquia as well as the Senior Honors Thesis, an independent research and/or creative project normally completed during the senior year. The Senior Honors Thesis can also be completed in conjunction with degree program requirements. 


Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Junior-level standing, or permission of the instructor

Catalog Description: Students explore the expectations that shape scholarly writing in their various disciplines and employ the correct forms, interpret and synthesize the literature, and presentment of their researched writing to various audiences. Students draw on research appropriate for discipline-specific publications and/or conference presentations. During this course, students learn to transform their work into publishable articles with the guidance of instructor feedback and peer review.

General Studies: Written Communication

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): C or better in ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Enrollment in the Honors Program.

Catalog Description: This variable topics course provides students with the opportunity to examine historical and/or contemporary issues from interdisciplinary perspectives. Course activities will include relevant readings from a variety of perspectives and disciplines, discussions encouraging synthesis and analysis of conflicting or competing views, and written assignments. B- or better required for Honors Credit

Note: This course may be repeated under different topics for a maximum of 9 credits

 

Summer 2018 Colloquium Offerings

HON 391T American Dream: Myths and Realities

Description: The belief that the U.S. is the land of opportunity –a place where social mobility is truly possible– lies at the heart of many narratives on the American Dream. This course explores the history of the concept of the American Dream, the ways it has been depicted, and how it is etched into national identity. Students examine the relationship between the American Dream and democratic values and discuss the relevance of this concept to lived realities in the U.S. today.

This seminar will include selections from many kinds of texts as a means for examining the topic of the American Dream including: critical theory, journalism, political commentary, short fiction, novel and film. Topics will include: theories of social class and social mobility, the relationship between the American Dream and work, the different ideological currents that tend to characterize narratives on the American Dream, the role of ideology and cultural production in society, obstacles that stand in the way of achieving the American Dream, and the mythic status of the American Dream vs. lived realities

 

Fall 2018 Colloquium Offerings

HON 391U Environment, People, & Place

Description: The purpose of the course is two-fold. First, to introduce students to the interdisciplinary field of political ecology, which seeks to understand the interconnections between the natural and social worlds. This provides a foundation for critical analysis of major environmental issues facing the world including the political, economic, social, and cultural implications. Second, the course requires students to create projects that communicate to the general public a specific environmental challenge and solution. Looking at a variety of human-environment interactions from local to global perspectives, the course is divided into four main themes: 1) introduction to political ecology, 2) climate change, 3) environmental justice, 4) and case studies to better understand how social and natural worlds are intertwined. 

 

HON 391V Adventures in Podcasting

Description: This course will investigate the nature of podcasts as a relatively new medium where many Americans turn for news, entertainment and education. We will investigate the medium as it pertains to the current cultural moment, as well as create our own weekly podcast on a subject agreed upon by the class as a whole. 

 

Credits: 1

Prerequisite(s): C or better in ENG 1020 or ENG 1021, Junior or Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director

Catalog Description: This course is to be taken prior to the Senior Honors Thesis (HON 4950) and is only open to Honors students. This course familiarizes students with project organization and the scope and proper format of an undergraduate thesis project. Each student will develop: a thesis statement, a project outline, an initial bibliography, and a working abstract. Each student will also identify a primary Thesis Advisor for the project. The Thesis Advisor is a faculty member with expertise in a discipline closely related to the topic of the thesis project. This course must be completed with a B- or better in order to advance to the Senior Honors Thesis. 

Credits: 3

Prerequisite(s): HON 4948 with a B- or better, Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director, approval from student's department/degree program if taken in place of Departmental Senior Experience course. 

Catalog Description: The Senior Honors Thesis is the culmination of the Honors undergraduate experience allowing students to synthesize learning using critical analysis and logical thinking. In this course, students complete an independent research and/or creative project under the direction of a primary Thesis Advisor and the Honors Director. The Thesis Advisor is a faculty member with expertise in a discipline closely related to the topic of the thesis project. Students submit a written thesis and deliver a public oral presentation of their work. This course must be completed with a B- or better in order to count for Honors credit.

Note: Students are required to receive approval from their department chair if this course is taken in place of a departmental Senior Experience course. 

Credits: 1

Prerequisite(s): HON 4948 with a B- or better, Senior standing, enrollment in the Honors Program and permission from the Honors Director, approval from student's department/degree program

Catalog Description: This course must be taken in conjunction with a departmental Senior Experience, capstone, or advanced research course.

Note: Students are required to receive approval from their department chair if this course is taken in place of a departmental Senior Experience course. 

Departmental Honors Options

Students can earn credit toward Honors Program completion by demonstrating high achievement in a wide variety of courses offered through academic departments.


Up to 6 optional hours.

Honors students earn up to six hours of honors credit by demonstrating high achievement in select courses from across all academic departments.

Experiential Learning

Up to 6 optional hours

These opportunities may be offered in partnership with academic departments, the Applied Learning Center, and/or Study Abroad.


 

Honors students may earn up to 6 optional hours from a study abroad experience.

Please visit MSU Denver's study abroad portal for more information.

 

Students can participate in an internship for up to six optional hours towards honors completion. 

Co-Curricular Honors Options

Students also have the option to acquire hours toward the completion of the Honors Program by participating in a variety of co-curriculuar options

Maximum of 8 non-credit-bearing units


Serve as an officer in the Honors Student Council

Up to 3 optional units for year-long service

  • Serve as student representative for the Honors Program and Honors Council
  • Plan and execute a number of engaging events designed to promote thinking in our communities

Up to 3 optional units

  • Participate in D-phi related events
  • Participate in events organized and/or approved by the Student Honors Council
  • Participate in the RMHC yearly event (1 unit/year)
  • And more!
  • 4 activities = 1 unit

Present undergraduate research at an academic conference

Up to 3 optional units, 1 unit/conference

  • Students should work with the Honors Program advisor and Student Travel to plan travel
  • Present at Western Regional Honors Conference (WRHC), yearly event 
  • Present at National Collegiate Honors Conference (NCHC), yearly event
  • Present at a discipline-specific conference

Up to 6 optional units, 1.5 units/semester.

Serve as:

  • Student tutor
  • Supplemental Instruction Leader
  • Peer Ambassador
  • TA or RA
  • Writing Center Student Employee
  • New Student Orientation Student Employee
  • MET Report Student Employee
  • MET Media Student Employee
  • Many of these options are also paid positions
  • Many of these options are also paid positions
  • These opportunities are offered in partnership with Student Academic Success, First Year Success, Individualized Degree Programs, and through certain academic departments
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