Dr. Mark Helper and Sarah Pierson, B.S. '06.

Dr. Mark Helper and Sarah Pierson, B.S. '06.

The Jackson School of Geosciences offers a departmental honors program to undergraduate majors. The honors program is closely tied to the pursuit of advanced research projects. Doing an undergraduate research project or thesis can significantly enhance a student’s résumé and prospects for advancement to graduate school. Because successful research projects rely on a student’s initiative, while deepening their knowledge, they often help students land key summer internships early in their undergraduate career.

Students must maintain high academic standing to apply for honors, which they do after completing 60 semester hours of coursework, including at least 8 hours of upper-division coursework in geological sciences.

Honors Program Minimum Requirements

  • A University overall GPA of at least 3.00, and a GPA in geological sciences of at least 3.50.
  • Completion of GEO 171H, 172H, and 173H with a grade of at least B.
  • Completion of GEO 379H (honors tutorial course) with a grade of at least B.
  • Completion at the University of at least 60 semester hours of coursework counted toward the degree.

The statement “Special Honors in Geological Sciences” will appear on the transcript of each student certified as having completed the honors program.

Students interested in the honors program should apply to the departmental honors advisor, Dr. Mark Cloos, when they have completed 60 semester hours of coursework, including at least 8 semester hours of upper-division coursework in geological sciences.

Honors Courses

171H, 172H, 173H – Research Methods

Restricted to students in the Geological Sciences Honors Program, and others by consent of instructor. Preparation for independent research projects (GEO 379H) through exposure to current research programs, facilities, personnel, and projects in the Jackson School of Geosciences. Students are guided through the selection of research topics, mentors and supervisors; the preparation of research proposals; the conduct of research activities; and oral and written presentation of results. May be counted as three of the six geological sciences senior elective hours.

Prerequisite: Upper division standing, admission to the Geological Sciences Honors Program (which requires 8 semester hours of upper-division coursework in geological sciences, a University grade point average of at least 3.00, and a grade point average in geological sciences of at least 3.50), or consent of honors adviser.

379H – Honors Tutorial Course

Special supervised research project resulting in written honors thesis with oral defense of project. Conference course. May be counted as three of the six geological sciences senior elective hours.

Prerequisite: GEO 173H, and consent of the student’s research supervisor and the departmental honors advisor.