Honors Conversion Policy

Guidelines to Convert Courses Not Designated as Honors Courses

The Honors conversion process is used as a mechanism for an Honors student to earn “Honors credit” in a course that is not listed as an Honors course. The Honors conversion process may be applied to the following types of courses: regular courses, independent study courses (including independent study Honors thesis courses), study abroad courses. Courses with sections already offered for Honors credit and courses with Honors course equivalents cannot be converted, students must enroll in the Honors section or course. Depending upon the type course being converted, specific guidelines, signatures, and forms are required. Please take care to follow the instructions given below for the type of course you are converting.

Message for Faculty

To be carried out successfully, an Honors conversion requires careful planning, close collaboration between the Honors student and faculty member throughout the semester, and a serious commitment by both parties to see the project through. THANK YOU for your willingness to undertake this responsibility. We hope that your participation in the student’s undergraduate Honors education results in a mutually engaging and rewarding experience. The following are guidelines to assist you in the development of a productive Honors conversion. If you wish to discuss any aspect of the Honors conversion process, please call the Honors Program Office at (860) 486 4223.

Converting Regular Courses to Honors Credit

An Honors conversion is a method for adding an “Honors dimension” to a course or section that is not already an Honors course. It is generally used when Honors students desire to study a topic for which no Honors course or section is scheduled. It is also used for Honors students involved in independent study, research, or graduate courses (no form is required for graduate courses).

Content of Conversion

The Honors conversion project should go more deeply into methodology and theory; it should address more sophisticated questions and/or include more advanced or demanding readings or problems; and it should satisfy more rigorous standards than non-Honors coursework. The following is a sample of appropriate activities: researching and writing an extra scholarly paper; preparing and delivering a presentation of relevant material to the class; attending symposia or lecture series and writing critical reviews of the ideas presented; participation in additional service activities or field experience and analyzing one’s experiences; completing an additional set of challenging problems or laboratory experiments; participation in regular seminars that complement a class.

Education Abroad Courses

Honors students who wish to do Honors work while studying abroad may propose a conversion project with the on-site instructor. Study abroad conversions require approval from the Honors advisor in the department approving the course for UConn credit and the Honors advisor in the student’s major department. The UConn Honors advisor in the course department would be considered the instructor of record for the conversion project and would consult with the course instructor on site to confirm its successful completion. Alternatively, students may work under the supervision of the Honors advisor in the course department —from a distance to complete a conversion project for a course taken while abroad.

Group Conversions

An instructor may arrange to oversee a group of students enrolled in the same class in a group conversion experience. Students and the instructor would meet at the start of the semester to decide on a conversion project that they could work on as a group. Students will complete individual conversion forms in the new online system.

Workload

The Honors conversion project should require no more than an additional 20 – 25 hours of work beyond other course requirements for a three credit course. For courses with fewer or more credits, the Honors conversion project workload should be prorated according to the number of course credits.

Meetings with Instructors

There should be planned regular meetings between the faculty member and student(s) to review, discuss, and revise as the project develops.

Eligibility to Supervise a Conversion

All course instructors may offer Honors conversions. Graduate students are asked to consult with a tenure-track member of the department who teaches the same course to review the development and fulfillment of the conversion project. If the conversion project is overseen by a graduate student, both the graduate student and her/his faculty supervisor must review the conversion.  Whomever’s name was selected on the online form would approve the request and the completed work at the end of the semester or contact honors@uconn.edu to complete the approval.

Independent Study Courses

(Including Honors Research and Thesis Courses)

Honors conversion for any type of independent study course requires Honors-level work in the discipline. Honors students would participate in more advanced research or take more initiative in an Honors independent study as compared to a non-Honors independent study experience. Research undertaken in Honors independent study courses often becomes part of the Honors thesis. In some departments where specific thesis courses are not offered, students use the independent study designation for their Honors thesis (conversion forms required). Students should consult with their Honors advisors to ensure proper registration for the Honors thesis and to discuss how the conversion of this independent study course fits into their Honors Final Plan of Study.

Eligible Courses and Guidelines

Students may convert any independent study course (not already coded as Honors grading) approved by their Honors advisor and faculty supervisor. This may include “independent study” and “research” type courses. To obtain Honors credit, students enrolled in independent study courses must complete a Course Conversion Agreement.  Conversion forms must be approved by the departmental Honors advisor and the instructor of record for the independent study.

5000- or 6000-Level Graduate Courses

Graduate courses offer Honors undergraduate students the opportunity to participate in advanced seminars and higher-level courses in their disciplines. Upon approval of the Honors advisor, graduate courses may be used toward the requirements for Honors Scholar graduation and marked on the Honors Final Plan of Study. In some cases, graduate courses are required for Honors work in the major department. Students do not need to file Honors conversion forms for graduate courses; if approved the course will count towards their required 12 Honors credits for graduation, however, will not be coded as “Honors credit” on their transcript.

Timelines, Deadlines, Signatures, Completion, and Posting Honors Credits

(All Conversion Types)

Forms, Timetable, and Deadlines

The Conversion request form must be submitted in the online Honors system by the deadlines posted. For fall and spring semester approved request forms are due three weeks into the semester. Summer approved conversion requests are due by the end of the first week of the summer session. Forms for study abroad courses are due three weeks from the beginning of the study abroad semester. Students must complete the conversion project during the semester in which the course is offered. Courses may not be retroactively converted.

Approvals

Course Conversion requests must be approved by the instructor and student’s  Honors advisor by the third week of classes or first week of classes for summer. In the case of study abroad courses, the agreement must be approved by the student’s Honors advisor (in place of the instructor) and the Honors advisor in the department providing credit.

Completing the Conversion Process

To receive Honors credit, students must earn a B- or above in a graded course (courses taken for P/F or S/U grades may not be taken for Honors credit) and complete the work outlined in their conversion agreement, independent study or graduate course by the end of the semester. The Honors Program Office sends an email to instructors with instructions how to confirm that conversion projects of students in her/his classes have been completed satisfactorily. Within a few weeks of receipt of instructor confirmation and confirmation of a grade of B- or above, the Honors Program Office requests the Honors credit notation on the student’s transcript. Students should check their unofficial transcript to confirm that Honors credit has been applied by the beginning of the following semester. Graduate courses will not have the “Honors credit” notation listed on the transcript but can be used toward Honors credit in their major providing the graduate course is listed as part of the approved Honors Final Plan of Study.