University Scholars Course Descriptions

NOTE: Click course name for description.


US118-128 Seminar (1,1)

Seminars on critical-thinking topics and service learning. Regular features include examination of pseudosciences, debates on current social/political issues, and aspects of community service organizations. Courses are taught by faculty, staff, and community experts.

US218-228 Reading-Discussion Group and Project Management (1,1)

Small groups of students study throughout the semester with one or two professors. Each group pursues a different course of study determined by the students and faculty together. Recent topics have included Conspiracy Theories in History, Military Tactics, The Science of Science Fiction, and History in Film. The second half of the year, US228, is devoted to learning how to effectively design and manage the specialized studies/senior project and culminates with the selection of a project and mentor.

US318-328-418 Specialized Studies (1,1,1)

Students study in areas of personal interest with individual guidance by faculty mentors. Weekly meetings between student and mentor are expected. Readings begin with a broad scope, then become more concentrated as the year progresses. This study leads to a senior project.

US428 Senior Project (3)

Students do individual creative work under faculty direction. The outcome is a significant product appropriate to the field of study (e.g., scientific research paper, major library research paper, creative writing collection, musical composition or performance, or computer program). The student makes a written and oral presentation to a faculty committee, and undergoes an oral examination on the project.

All University Scholars courses are graded on a pass/fail basis.

Program Requirements and Policies

Class Attendance and Participation

All University Scholars students are expected to be in attendance at the scheduled times for their Seminar, Reading-Discussion, and Specialized Studies Courses. Honors Faculty will be asked to comment on the quality and quantity of each student's participation in the various courses each term.


Academic Programs

Scholars must attend one of the Academic Speaker Program public presentations each semester. (See Academic Speaker Program information.)


In light of the University Scholars Program goals, all Scholars students are also required to attend two cultural events of their choosing each year, one per semester. One of these may be on the University campus, e.g. Music Department recitals, Vanguard Theater performances, Arts Council presentations, etc. (see calendar or individual department schedules for more specific information). The other cultural event attended must be off-campus. The University Scholars will provide transportation to several such events throughout the year.


All Scholars are also encouraged to perform community service each semester, as community service is a sign of a good citizen. Individual service projects are encouraged, and the University Scholars Organization also provides several service opportunities to the Scholars.


The University Scholars Organiztion (USO)

All Scholars must be members of the University Scholars Organization and pay yearly dues of $10 to the treasurer at the beginning of each academic year (fall semester). See additional information on the University Scholars Organization page.


Additional Requirements

Every year, each scholar is required to submit one article or piece of creative writing to The Scholar (the University Scholars Program publication) or to another publication. All Scholars must also maintain a weekly online journal.

University Scholars Organization

Learn about USO.

Visit USO >

Academic Speakers Program

Learn More >