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University Honors Program

Every student at the George Washington University enjoys extraordinary opportunity. For a select few, the University Honors Program heightens the challenge and increases the depth of their academic experience.

This program forges exceptionally productive relationships among a community of undergraduates and faculty mentors. Most students demonstrate outstanding intellectual curiosity and a desire to engage with professors. They are self-motivated, articulate and inspired to make a difference in the world. 

Available to students in all of GW’s undergraduate schools, the program offers about 50 special courses each semester—all of them writing-intensive, discussion-driven and limited to 15-20 students. Many honors courses use a problem-based or case study approach in which students drive the learning process and professors serve as facilitators rather than lecturers. Because of their expanded scope and interdisciplinary structure, honors courses carry four credits rather than the typical three credits. 

The Honors Program’s wide-ranging curriculum addresses Western and Eastern traditions of thought, arts and cultures around the globe and important multidimensional world issues such as global climate change. In their first two years at GW, honors students take a series of special courses unique to the program. In the third and fourth years of the program, students engage in special or departmental honors in their majors. To graduate as a University Honors Program Scholar, students must qualify for departmental honors. All of the program’s students participate in an honors global issues practicum—a senior year capstone experience that provides an opportunity to apply and reflect on what they have learned as undergraduates.

New students may apply for admission to the Honors Program at the time they apply to GW. The Honors Program also accepts a small cohort of continuing students who choose to apply to the program during the second semester of their first year at GW.