Honors Requirements

Honors in multidisciplinary science centers on a thesis which is the culmination of research conducted under the direction of a faculty advisor. The advisor should be a member of the teaching faculty of the science department relevant to your thesis topic.

Honors Criteria

To graduate with honors, you must meet the following criteria:

  1. Completion of all requirements for the Multidisciplinary Science Major.
  2. Minimum 3.5 GPA average in all classes for the major.
  3. Minimum 3.5 overall GPA.
  4. Completion of 6 credits (or equivalent experience pre-approved by GS Director) of research (401) or thesis (403) or both in an appropriate department. These must be distributed over at least two terms, and cannot be used to fulfill emphasis area requirements.
  5. The Multidisciplinary Science Honors Guidelines sheet (available from program Director), signed by you and your faculty sponsor, must be turned in no later than 3 terms before graduation.
  6. Thesis: Must be submitted at least 6 weeks before your graduation date. Each student pursuing honors will have a thesis committee comprised of the faculty sponsor (Typically the Principal Investigator of the research lab) and the Multidisciplinary Science Program Director. 
  7. Thesis defense: must be scheduled for at least 5 weeks before your graduation date.


Late sophomore, early Junior year: A good time to join a research lab is late sophomore or early junior year, once introductory coursework in the relevant field has been completed. Please see this page for information about how to identify and join a lab. While the page is focused on research in biology, the information and advice can be applied to most fields. Other helpful resources can be found on our Research Opportunities page.

One year prior to degree completion: Notify the MSCI program director of your intent to pursue honors in MSCI and to obtain the MSCI Honors Guidelines Sheet. Submit the filled-out sheet, signed by you and your faculty sponsor, no later than 3 terms before graduation.

At least 6 weeks before degree completion: Submit your thesis to the MSCI Director. Work with your thesis advisor to identify an appropriate timeline for providing them with your thesis, as it may differ from the MSCI expectations. Students in the Clark Honors College can use their CHC thesis work towards MSCI honors; students who do this must follow the timelines for both MSCI and CHC and fulfill all requirements for both.

At least 5 weeks before degree completion: Defend your thesis.