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Established in 1997, the Honors Program at Montana State University Billings provides an enhanced and supportive learning environment responsive to the educational needs of exceptionally motivated undergraduate students. This goal is accomplished through the guidance of faculty noted for excellence in teaching who offer small Honors sections of regular courses, interdisciplinary colloquia, special seminars, and increased opportunities for undergraduate research and creative endeavors. Students also have direct access to professors in small courses with unique intellectual challenges. Membership is open to undergraduate students from all majors seeking enriched learning, cultural awareness, and fellowship. The program fosters an affordable small college experience while benefiting from the University’s size and many degree options. As a community of scholars, faculty work enthusiastically to help students achieve the following goals:
- Develop skills in self-expression, critical thinking, information gathering, and problem solving through lively class discussions.
- Use interdisciplinary methods to investigate, research, and compose analytical or scientific papers of substantial length and depth.
- Acquire a competitive advantage for scholarships, graduate admissions, and professional placement.
The program is overseen by faculty members on the Honors Advisory Council. Students may also serve the program as members of the Student Advisory Board, which selects a representative for the Council. The Board also supports the program by enriching a sense of community so that social activities—such as service learning, outdoor excursions, and other special events—can increasingly flourish.
At present, the University Honors Program is designed so that many courses contribute to satisfying General Education requirements. Students earning at least 21 credits with a GPA of at least 3.0 in Honors courses (including 3 credits in an upper-division course) will have their official transcripts notated: University Honors Scholar: General Honors.
At the heart of the Honors curriculum are courses that examine significant original texts in terms of their historical and cultural backgrounds. Honors courses are frequently offered in history, political science, integrated science, education, law and society, social science, communications, economics, and other areas.
Consult the University Honors Program website at www.msubillings.edu/CAS/honors or contact the Director to see the specific courses scheduled for the current semester.
For acceptance into the University Honors Program, incoming freshmen must satisfy at least one of these requirements:
- have a high school GPA of at least 3.5.
- be in the upper fifth of the student’s graduating class.
- have a composite ACT score of 26 or better.
- have a Chancellor’s Scholarship.
- be supported by a letter from a high school teacher attesting that the student has the intellectual motivation that is expected of an honors student.
Those students who have completed at least 15 credits of higher education may be admitted to Honors courses by having one the following:
- a letter of recommendation from a university faculty member.
- a cumulative GPA of at least 3.2.
Students who earn a grade of “B” or higher in an Honors course are also eligible for admission to the program.To learn more about what we can offer you, please contact Tami Haaland, Director of the University Honors Program. You can reach her by phone at (406) 657-2948 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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