Honors Frequently Asked Questions

On this page, you can find answers to frequently asked questions. Also be sure to follow the links noted, as other areas of our website have more detailed information on these topics.


Also see the Application Process page.

Can I enroll in the Honors Program if I'm not a student in the College of Letters & Science?

You must be a student in the College of Letters & Science to participate in the College Honors Program and to enroll in Honors Seminars (INT 84AA-ZZ).

Do incoming freshmen apply to join the Honors Program? What are the criteria for admitting incoming freshmen to the Honors Program?

Effective 2021, incoming freshmen can apply to join the Letters & Science Honors Program after they submit their SIR (Statement of Intent to Register) to UCSB. Admission is on a rolling basis, and application details are on the Application Process page of our website. Note: It is also possible to apply to the Honors Program after freshman year if a student is not admitted to the program for freshman year.

When can I apply to the Honors Program if I wasn't admitted as an incoming freshman?

Students admitted to UCSB as freshmen who were not offered admission to the Honors Program will have one opportunity to apply to the program: July after freshman year. Admission is on a rolling basis; please see the Application Process page for application details and deadlines. Also keep in mind that, if you are not eligible to apply to the Honors Program, you may be eligible for honors at graduation; see the Office of the Registrar’s website for details.

Can I apply to the Honors Program as an incoming transfer if I wasn't invited to apply?

Effective 2021, incoming transfer students can apply to join the Letters & Science Honors Program after they submit their SIR (Statement of Intent to Register) to UCSB. Admission is on a rolling basis, and further application details are on the Application Process page of our website. 

Can I apply or reapply to the Honors Program the summer before my third (or fourth) year?

No. Students who have completed their second year are not eligible for acceptance or readmission to the Honors Program. You may want to consult your major department’s undergraduate advisor on earning distinction in your major. Also, you may be eligible for honors at graduation; see the Office of the Registrar’s website for details.

How can I show proof that I am a member of the Honors Program?

Honors Program membership is listed in GOLD under Registration information. If professors prefer, they may also send a list of student names to us to verify students' memebership (send to: Honorsmail@Ltsc.ucsb.edu). Note: In order to access your library privileges, bring a photo ID for library staff to check a list of current Honors students (see the Honors Program Benefits & Advantages page of our site for more information on library privileges).



Also see the Honors Experiences page.

Can I earn course honors in an Honors Section if I choose Pass/No Pass (P/NP) instead of a letter grade?

In order to receive Honors Experience credit for an Honors Section, you must earn a letter grade of B or higher—even if the professor has indicated that grading is optional. Occasionally, a professor will offer an Honors Section as P/NP only. If this is the case, a grade of P will be accepted for credit towards the Honors Program.
Note: An Honors Section taken in conjunction with a regular discussion section counts as 1 Honors Experience (i.e. EARTH 30H + EARTH 30). You must earn satisfactory grades in both the Honors Section and in the discussion section to earn 1 Honors Experience credit.

Can I propose an Honors Contract if I'm not currently in the Honors Program?

No. You must be a current member of the Honors Program to earn credit for an Honors Contract.

Can I participate in an Honors Section if I'm not in the Honors Program?

It is possible, but the decision rests with the professor. Professors should give Honors students priority enrollment in Honors Sections. See the Honors Experiences page for more information about enrolling in Honors Sections.

Can I participate in Honors Seminars (INT 84's) if I'm not in the Honors Program?

No. You must be a current Letters & Science Honors Program student to participate in Honors Seminars. See the Honors Experiences page for more information about INT 84 and 184 Honors Seminars.

As an upper-division student, may I take lower-division Honors Seminars?

Lower-division Honors Seminars (INT 84) are for First Year and Second year Honors students.

Is there a limit to how many INT 84's Honors Seminars I can take while at UCSB?

Yes. You may take 8 units maximum of INT 84 Honors Seminars.

Is there a limit to how many INT courses on the Automatic Honors course list that I can apply toward meeting Honors Program requirements?

While there is no limit to the number of INT 98, 99, 198 and 199 courses that count toward Honors Program completion, please check with a Letters & Science advisor about the maximum you may take toward completing your degree.

Can I earn honors while enrolled in one of these programs: UC Education Abroad Program, UC Washington DC, or UC Sacramento?

The Honors Program will count your UC EAP term as a single, upper-division Honors Experience as long you are registered for at least 12 graded units, earn at least a 3.0 GPA, and have no grade lower than a B. If you participate in UCDC or UCCS, one term will be counted as a single, upper division Honors Experience as long as you earned at least a B in the required research seminar. Individual courses during a UC EAP, UCDC, or UCCS term cannot count as Honors Experiences.

Can I earn honors credit for non-Letters & Science coursework?

Honors Program students may only earn credit toward Honors Program completion through Letters & Science courses, with some exceptions. Please see the list of Automatic Honors Courses on our site for those exceptions.

Does a linked Honors Section (like EARTH 30H that must be taken concurrently with EARTH 30) count as one Honors Experience or two?

Successful completion of a linked Honors Section counts as one Honors Experience, even though “course honors” appears next to both sections. You must earn a B or better in both sections in order to count as one Honors Experience.

Does an honors Chemistry lab (CHEM 2AC, 2BC, 2CC) count as a separate Honors Experience?

Yes, those labs each count as one Honors Experience. See the quarterly Honors Section lists on the Honors Experiences page for more details on how many Honors Experiences each Honors Section is worth.

How do I enroll in Chem 109AH-Honors Organic Chemistry

In spring quarter, the department emails students who enrolled in Chem 1A, 1B, and 1C or Chem 2A, 2B, and 2C during that academic year and who earned at least B+/A- in both Chem 1A and 1B or in 2A and 2B, inviting them to apply for the fifty spots available in Chem 109AH.  The department determines who gets to enroll based on all UCSB grades, GPA, and major as well as the order the students applied.

Can I earn honors credit for the program before I’m admitted to the Honors Program?

No. Honors credit (Experiences) for the Honors Program may only be earned while you’re a member of the Honors Program. Honors work completed prior to your Honors Program start quarter will not count toward meeting Honors Program requirements. This same rule applies to completing Community Service requirements.

Can I participate in an Honors Contract with an instructor who is not technically the professor?

In general, Honors Contracts must be supervised by a course's instructor of record holding one of the following titles: Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, Lecturers SOE, Lecturers PSOE, Senior Lecturers SOE, Affiliated Faculty. If the instructor of record is a Visiting Professor, the honors contract may need to be reviewed and approved by the Dean to determine if it meets our academic standards and we'll notify you of the decision

Teaching Assistants and Teaching Associates, or Graduate Students may not supervise Honors Contracts.

(Note: The online Honors Contract Proposal Form lists these acceptable and unacceptable types of instructor titles; when proposing a contract with the instructor, please ask for their title in order to include this in your contract proposal.)

Dismissal & Reapplication

When does the Honors Program conduct its annual review of Honors students' records?

Honors Program advisors complete the annual review every summer, based on cumulative GPA and Honors Experiences earned through that spring quarter. GPA dismissals from the program may not be appealed. In the case of insufficient honors work, summer session honors work may be taken into account for readmission to the program. Upon dismissal, it is your responsibility to inform the program of any summer-session honors coursework. Honors advisors will then work with you on possible readmission to the program. Please see the Annual Requirements page of the site for details on annual requirements to remain in the program. Also see the Completing the Program page for total requirements.


What about the College of Creative Studies?

Two great options for highly motivated UCSB students: The College of Creative Studies or Letters & Science Honors 



If I'm on track to complete the Honors Program, what do I have to do?

In order to finalize completion of the Honors Program, graduating students will submit the Intent to Complete the Honors Program online form by the end of the second week of your final quarter at UCSB (be sure to list any honors courses in progress). Note: If you're graduating in the Summer or Fall and will be participating in Commencement, you must submit your Honors Completion form early (by the Spring deadline) in order for advisors to determine if you're on track to complete the program and be eligible for honors-related Commencement regalia. See the Completing the Program page for more information.

Note: This is separate from declaring your graduation candidacy with the Registrar's Office. Please see their website here for more information.

Is there a special Honors Program ceremony?

The Honors Program holds an awards ceremony and reception, typically on the Friday afternoon of Commencement weekend. We will email graduating honors students details in the Spring about the event, only if they have submitted the required Intent to Complete the Honors Program form.

Is there special Honors Program regalia to wear at Commencement?

Graduating Honors Program students are eligible to buy an honors fourragere cord (worn over the shoulder). Details will be sent to eligible Honors Program students in Spring quarter regarding this cord.

How do I found out what "honors" level I'll earn at Commencement?

GPA-based honors catergories exist, based on qualifying units and GPA. Graduating students will have projected honors levels for Commencement, since records are not yet finalized. Our office receives "potential" honors levels from the Registrar's Office. That information will be used for Commencement purposes, and the Registrar will later designate students' final honors levels when records are finalized. The Registrar's website has more information here about the various honors levels.