The Honors Program is designed to enhance the educational opportunities of
academically gifted students who seek to participate in analytical, synthetical, and
creative study. The program welcomes students who are eager to accept academic
challenges and to become creatively involved in their own pursuit of educational
excellence. Honors students explore classical works and contemporary thought across the
academic disciplines. Honors students may join the Honors Student Association, which
provides highly motivated students opportunities for social interaction, educational
trips, campus leadership and program development.
To be eligible students must demonstrate academic achievement meeting at least two of
the following minimum standards:
- 3.5 high school GPA;
- 78th or higher percentile on ACT or SAT;
- 3.5 Columbia College GPA.
Students with prior college experience must have 30 semester hours of credit with a
minimum GPA of 3.5 or higher on a 4.0 scale and meet one of the criteria listed above.
Home-schooled or other non-traditionally schooled students are eligible for admission
to the Honors Program upon presentation of an ACT, SAT, or GED score at or above 78th
percentile and demonstration of scholarship in high school level academic coursework.
Students may petition for admission to the Honors Program if they have completed a
minimum of 30 hours of academic credit at Columbia College with a cumulative grade point
average of 3.6. Credit transferred from another academic institution may not be used
when petitioning to participate in the Honors Program. To petition for admission a
student must complete a petition form and write a letter to the Honors Program Director
including the reasons for desiring admission and the anticipated benefits to the
student. The student must also have two Columbia College faculty members submit letters
to the Director supporting the petition. The Director grants admission to the Honors
Once eligible, a minimum 3.25 GPA overall and a 3.0 GPA in Honors courses is required
to remain qualified for the Honors Program. No Honors courses may be taken with the
pass/fail option. Entering Freshmen who qualify for the Honors Program are strongly
encouraged to enroll in HNRS 110 Introduction to Honors and HNRS 111 Introduction to
To graduate with Honors, a student must complete at least 21 academic hours in the
Honors Program. A one credit hour community service project for Honors 310 must be
completed. Students may enroll in a maximum of 9 hours of Honors credits designated for
General Education and may be eligible to enroll in a maximum of 3 hours of Honors
credits for an Honors distinction project. An eligible Honors student may apply no more
than six hours of Honors credits transferred from accredited institutions toward the
completion of the Honors Program.
Recommended Honors Plan of Study
||Introduction to Honors I
||Introduction to Honors II
Recognition of Academic Achievement
The Dean's List is an honor accorded to students who achieve academic distinction.
Students may be named to the Dean's List if
- they complete at least 12 semester hours of Columbia College credit in a given
semester with a GPA of 3.5 or higher; or
- they complete a minimum of 6 semester hours during each of two consecutive evening
sessions with a GPA of 3.5 or higher.
A grade given to replace an Incomplete cannot be applied to Dean's List requirements.
ESOL 100, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, ENGL 107, MATH 104 or MATH 106 do not count towards
Dean¡s List eligibility.
Courses elected by students as pass/fail or satisfactory/unsatisfactory are not
included in the minimum requirement of at least 12 semester hours (Day) or the minimum
of six semester hours (Evening).
In the spring of each year, an Honors and Awards Convocation is held, a special
occasion recognizing those students who have made exceptional contributions to Columbia
College through outstanding scholarship and/or leadership. Students who have completed
at least 15 semester hours at Columbia College with a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher
are eligible for these awards. Recipients of these awards are generally chosen from this
Columbia College confers baccalaureate degrees with the following honors
|3.9 and above
||summa cum laude
|3.75 to 3.89
||magna cum laude
|3.5 to 3.74
To receive a degree with these honors, students must have completed 60 hours of
credit at Columbia College.
Students who graduate with at least 39 Columbia College hours and earn at least a 3.5
cumulative G.P.A. may be eligible for the Dean's Academic Achievement Award upon
graduation. Students must meet the following criteria:
- Hold an Associate in Art or Associate in Science from a community college with an
articulation agreement with Columbia College.
- Complete a bachelors degree at the ESD site of articulation.
- Earn a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.5 or higher.
- Complete 39 hours in residency with Columbia College.
Students seeking a second baccalaureate degree to whom a Dean's Academic Achievement
Award was granted with a prior degree must complete an additional 39 hours in residency
with at least a 3.5 cumulative G.P.A. to be granted a second Dean's Academic Achievement
Students eligible for Latin Honors are ineligible for the Dean's Academic Achievement
Baccalaureate Degrees with Distinction
The Bachelor's Degree with Distinction is available for any degree program offered by
Columbia College and requires a demonstration of excellence in a special two-semester
project (excluding summer session) in addition to satisfying degree requirements.
Distinction work is done under the direct supervision of a faculty member qualified
in the field of the project. At all major stages of the project (formal prospectus,
complete draft or evidence of significant and substantive progress, and final project),
work must be submitted by designated deadlines to the Chair of the Academic Honors and
Awards Committee for approval or direction. Credits and grades for distinction work are
To be eligible, a student must have second-semester junior standing (with at least 15
semester hours at Columbia College) and a 3.5 cumulative GPA. Eligibility is based on
the assumption that a student may be eligible after five semesters. Entry into the
program must be at a date that permits two semesters of work on the project.
Each Commencement, special recognition is given to students earning a 4.0 grade point
average who have completed the entire course of study for the bachelor's degree at
The President's Honorarium for Academic Excellence (Overload Fee Waiver)
Columbia College students who have earned 30 institutional semester hours may take an
overload to a total of 21 semester hours without additional cost if their cumulative
grade-point average is at least 3.75.