Program Requirements

Your P.A.T.H. to Success

The PAthways To Honors (P.A.T.H.) is a new, flexible program that offers students three routes to achieving their CALS Honors credentials:

  • CALS Academics: This path is a focus on rigor and depth in the classroom with an opportunity to help with teaching or curriculum development. CALS Academics requires you to take ALS 398H during the spring semester of your second year; choose a faculty mentor to oversee and guide your progress in CALS Honors and your major program of study; take 24 credit hours of honors courses (6 hours must be in CALS, 18 can be in any college) at the 200-level or higher; maintain a cumulative 3.35 GPA; and prepare a poster to present at a CALS Honors symposium that describes your experience and the influence that it has had on your career plans. Honors contracts can be developed for courses that you’d like to take that do not have an ‘H’ section available (honors contracts are available through the University Honors Program website). You may substitute up to 6 of the 24 required credit hours of coursework by serving as an undergraduate teaching assistant or working directly with a faculty member on teaching or curriculum development.
  • CALS Scholars: A focus on research that allows you to work closely with a faculty member to develop an independent research project. In this path, you first complete ALS 398H during the spring semester of the sophomore year, then choose a faculty mentor to serve as your research supervisor. You will enroll in a two-semester research experience, first completing ALS 498H, which requires completion of a project proposal, and then ALS 499H, which requires completion of the research, analysis of associated data, and completion of a scientific paper and a poster to be presented at the University Undergraduate Research Symposium or a CALS Honors symposium. You can complete this sequence at any point prior to graduation. If you choose this path, you must take 6 credit hours of honors courses at the 200 level or higher and must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.35.
  • CALS Abroad: Study abroad and consider cultural differences related to your major and career plans between the US and your international destination. In this path, you can study abroad at a location of your choosing and complete a minimum of 3 weeks, 3 credit hours, or both. During the spring semester of your sophomore year, you must take ALS 398H and choose a faculty mentor to oversee your progress. (The mentor does not have to be on the trip.) You will complete at least 12 credit hours of honors coursework at the 200 level or higher. The study abroad experience can account for 3-12 of the required honors credit hours, and there is no minimum course level. In addition, supervised research overseas can count for up to 3 of the required credit hours. You will develop and present a poster at a CALS Honors symposium that describes your study abroad experience and the influence it had on your career plans. Finally, you must maintain a cumulative 3.35 GPA or higher.

Note: Although you are encouraged to participate in aspects of each of these pathways, you must complete one to receive CALS Honors credentials.