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Honors in the Social Sciences

As an HSS student, you will complete a total of 21 credits, most of which will be satisfied through your General Education or major/minor requirements.

The following serves as a general overview of the program. Each student’s experience will be individualized according to their interest, and we encourage all students who are thinking of applying to meet with the HSS director as early as possible to discuss the program requirements and how it could enhance your college experience.

  • Take Pre-requisite Course
    • HSS200, 3 credits: An interdisciplinary seminar that is open to all students who are interested in the HSS program. This course will provide you with a foundation and an overview of the program, and introduce you to theories and methods from several social scientific disciplines. The course emphasizes the diversity of approaches through which knowledge about “society” is produced in the academy today. Faculty from across the Division of Social Sciences give guest lectures.

  • Apply to HSS
    • Following completion of HSS200, you may apply to gain official acceptance to the program by submitting an online HSS Program Application.

  • Submit Minor Concentration Form
    • Upon acceptance to the HSS program, you must submit a minor concentration form describing what you plan to study and what courses you will take to fulfill the honors requirements. (See Thematic Courses for more information.) This form should be completed in consultation with the HSS director who is available to advise you on your area of interest and how best to put your interests into action.

  • Complete Thematic Courses
    • You will take four thematically related courses – at the 200 level or above, with at least one at or above the 300 level – for a total of 12 credits. Often one of these courses will be an independent study to conduct background research on your thesis topic. It is also possible, on a case-by-case basis and with a compelling reason, that courses a student has already taken may fulfill part of this requirement. You will work with the HSS director to select you thematic courses

  • Complete Capstone Project
    • During your junior or senior year in the HSS Program, you will develop a significant piece of social science research on a topic related to your particular thematic track, resulting in a substantial capstone project. The mechanism for such research projects is either the honors or capstone program of a department within the division or a 3-credit research-oriented independent study (HSS 350) that is supervised by the HSS director.

  • Take Senior Research Colloquium
    • HSS390, 3 Credit: As you complete your capstone project, you will enroll in HSS390 Senior Research Colloquium. In the colloquium, you will present your work to faculty and student colleagues from across the Division of Social Sciences.


 Office Information


Honors in the Social Sciences Program

Director: Dr. Kara Schlichting

Office: Powdermaker 352-N


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