Honors Courses and Research

The Honors College offers a range of honors courses — from specialized seminars in which small groups of students explore a topic in-depth with a top Clemson professor, to honors sections of departmental offerings that offer a high level of academic rigor.

Students pursuing departmental honors enroll in a series of courses in their major department that prepares them to conduct and present their research.

Contact the Honors Advisors if you assistance with your schedule, classes or have questions.

Download instructions on how to search for Honors courses in iROAR.

To view the Spring 2022 Honors Seminars and their course descriptions - click here

The Clemson University Honors College offers a wide range of courses designed especially for Honors students. These include:

  • Freshman Seminars

    In the fall of the semester, first-year Honors students are eligible to sign up for intensive, discussion-based seminars on a wide range of classic and contemporary topics. Freshmen seminar students receive general education credit in the social sciences, literature, or arts and humanities. Examples include:

    • The Enlightenment: Rights, Power, and Liberty
    • The History of Evil
    • The Epic and Authority
    • The Fictions of War
    • The 1960s: Decade of Change
  • Clemson University Honors Seminars

    Every semester, the Clemson University Honors College offers up to fifteen Honor seminars on topics drawn from the arts, the humanities, and the social, physical, and biological sciences. These discussion-based courses are taught by many of Clemson's top faculty members and are open to all Honors students. Recent seminars have included:

    • Becoming Harry Potter
    • H1N1 and Pandemics
    • Spies and Spy Novels
    • The Greatest Math Problems of All Time
    • The 2010 Midterm Elections
    • Understanding the Current Economic Crisis
    • America and the World
    • Puzzles and Paradoxes
    • Write the Great American Novel!

    See Honors Seminars  for all the details

  • General Honors Courses

    Clemson University Honors students have the opportunity to take Honors sections of a wide range of department-based courses, including many elective and required courses in mathematics, the physical sciences, engineering, the life sciences, the humanities and the social sciences. Examples include:

    • Biology HON 1100 — Principles of Biology I
    • Chemistry HON 1010 — General Chemistry
    • Economics HON 2110 — Principles of Microeconomics
    • English HON 1030 — Accelerated Composition
    • Mathematics HON 1060 — Calculus of One Variable I
    • Music HON 2100 — Music Appreciation
    • Physics HON 2210 — Physics with Calculus II
    • Philosophy HON 1030 — Introduction to Ethics
    • Psychology HON 2010 — Introduction to Psychology

    See the Student Handbook link for all the details including Requirements for completing General Honors.

  • Departmental Honors, Advanced Research

    Students engaged in Departmental Honors research are enrolled in advanced courses in their disciplines, leading, in general, to the completion of a senior research project or thesis.  Examples of recently submitted Honors projects include:

    • Effect of Mutations on the Expression of CG13222 Regulatory Element
    • Understanding Acetate Kinase Metabolism: The Search for Answers
    • DR/SD: Disaster Relief/Shelter Development
    • Happy Daggers and Other Stories
    • Merger Analysis: The Walt Disney Company Acquisition of  Marvel Entertainment
    • United States Public Opinion of China
    • 3-D Image reconstruction of Aortic Aneurysms for Real-Time Biomechanical Analyses
    • Robotic Bead Deposition System for Bio-fabrication
    • System Identification of Vehicle Parameters
    • Assessing the Effectiveness of a High Risk Appraisal and Counseling Intervention in Managing Obesity and Obesity-Related Diseases among a Latino Population
    • Departmental Honors Research Grant Funding


    Departmental Honors Requirements

    See the Student Handbook for all the details including specific requirements for completing Departmental Honors in your area of interest.

    Departmental Honors Contacts

    Click HERE for a specific academic department contact to learn more about Departmental Honors in your department.

  • Interdisciplinary Honors

    Interdisciplinary Honors is equivalent to Departmental Honors distinction and is specifically for students who wish to combine at least two academic disciplines into one cohesive project. For more information, see the INTERDISCIPLINARY HONORS WEBSITE.

  • Honors Contracts

    Honors students can also work individually with faculty members to create specialized Honors courses through the use of the Honors contract system. To create such a course, students simply enroll in a non-Honors course, then work out an agreement with the instructor to make additions or modifications to the course syllabus and requirements. All Honors contracts must be approved by the Honors College.

    Students may earn honors credit for a 3000- or 4000-level course by means of an Honors Contract (in exceptional cases contracts for 1000- and 2000-level classes may be approved). The purpose of such contracts is to enable students to experience the educational enrichment that typifies honors courses, and to explore topics in greater depth than is normally possible in a regular undergraduate course.

    It is recommended that you meet with your professor prior to submitting this form. Please refer to Honors Student Contract Course Policies and What Makes an Honors Course an Honors Course? documents for additional details about Honors Contracts. 

    The Honors Contract Form is due on Friday, December 10 for spring 2022 classes. The contract form will open Monday, November 1. Once students submit the Honors Student Contract Proposal form, the professor listed on the Contract will be asked to review and submit the final proposal to the Honors College. Students should email the professor to notify them when the contract proposal form has been submitted so they can be on the lookout for an email to review and submit the final proposal. Students should also let the professor know that that email may go to the "junk" or "clutter" folder of their email. The Honors Contract Faculty Review is due by Wednesday, December 15. Students will receive a decision about Honors Contract Proposals by Friday, December 17 with further instructions. 

    Faculty — At the end of the contract period (semester or summer term), the instructor shall submit the grade of P (pass) or NP (no-pass) in the iROAR system for the HON 4000 section assigned to the contract.

    Please email Dana Irvin with questions.

  • Create-a-Course Contest

    Every Fall, the Honors College sponsors the annual Create-a-Course contest, which allows students to create and design the Honors course of their dreams!  Last year's winner was The Graphic Novel. The winning student receives a prize and, of course, the chance to take the course they invented!

Clemson University Honors College Contact Information

Clemson University | 180 Core Campus | Clemson, SC 29634-5106 | 864-656-4762 | Email: Clemson University Honors College