The Davidson Honors College is a campus-wide association of faculty and students united by a common concern for academic and personal excellence. Its mission is to foster intellectual and civic values, and to support the best possible teaching and learning circumstances for participating faculty and students.
The College offers an academic and social home to talented and motivated students as they pursue their undergraduate education. Students from all major areas in the College of Arts and Sciences and the professional schools are welcome, as well as students who are undecided about a major. Honors is not a major in itself, but an enhancement to General Education in the liberal arts and sciences as well as to virtually all undergraduate majors on campus.
The Honors College building, at the center of the campus, provides a large student lounge, study rooms, classrooms and a computer center for student use. The Honors Students' Association plans and conducts a variety of social and academic activities as well as community service projects throughout the year. Special Honors residence hall floors and living units are available.
The Davidson Honors College also sponsors The University of Montana Office for Civic Engagement, an office that coordinates student service activities in the community and beyond, and supports the integration of community service experience into the academic curriculum.
In accordance with our mission, the DHC is committed to offering students the additional resources, challenges, and encouragement to be active and collaborative learners. DHC students are expected to:
Honors students are expected to pursue these student learning outcomes inside the classroom and out, in their work and their recreation, in volunteer service, membership in clubs and organizations, participation in campus and civic governance, in independent study, pursuit of their hobbies and interests, and in formal course work.
Honors courses are limited in enrollment to 20 students and usually are conducted in a discussion or seminar format, emphasizing critical thinking, the development of written and oral communication skills, direct contact with the faculty, and use of original texts or "hands-on," participatory experience. These courses are taught by outstanding faculty selected according to their department's standards of excellence. Course offerings vary somewhat and represent many academic departments and subject areas. Honors courses typically fulfill General Education and many common major requirements.
Some Honors courses are offered as a part of Freshman Interest Groups. In these groupings, a cohort of students enrolls for the same two or three courses in a given semester. Each course meets separately with its own instructor, but the same students are in all courses. Frequently in contact with one another and dealing with the same issues daily, these students tend to have a more intense learning experience than those in individual courses.
At the junior and senior level students are offered a selection of Honors seminars. These seminars are open to students from all disciplines. The aim of these seminars is to assist students in applying different methods of inquiry and research, in using the insights of various disciplines, in integrating the students' knowledge, and in developing well-informed personal stances toward the material and issues studied.
In their senior year, students complete an Honors thesis or research project, assuming responsibility, together with a faculty mentor, for an original scholarly research or creative project. This project may coincide with a departmental requirement, and is intended to prepare students to fulfill roles of intellectual, moral, and cultural leadership as they realize their places in society.
A college education invites students to formulate goals and reflect on their progress toward attaining them. Davidson Honors College students are responsible for evaluating their aims and attainments from year to year in collaboration with an advisor. Entering students are asked to assess their abilities and resources and begin to formulate interests and aims in light of the student learning outcomes mentioned previously.
Davidson Honors College students are required to complete a minimum of seven Honors courses, including HC 121L and a senior Honors research project (which may be counted as one Honors course). An Honors section of LS 151L or LS 152L may be counted as equivalent to HC 121L. HC 120, Introduction to Honors, also is required of all first-year students. As this is a one-credit course, it does not count toward the seven Honors courses required to graduate. Details are available in the Davidson Honors College office or on the DHC web site at www.dhc.umt.edu.
It also is recommended that all students include in their curriculum at least one course or independent study project which includes an experience of volunteer community service or study abroad.
To maintain good standing in the Davidson Honors College, students must take at least one Honors course per year and maintain an overall cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above. Academic progress is reviewed each semester. Those whose grades are below the 3.0 standard are given an academic warning. A student whose cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0 is placed on academic probation and remains in this status until the cumulative grade point average rises to 3.0 or higher. Suspension from the Honors College occurs when the term grade point average of a student on probation is below 3.0. A suspended student may be reinstated when the cumulative grade point average rises to 3.0 or higher.
Graduation through the Davidson Honors College requires a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, and 3.4 in the major field. Upon successful completion of the requirements, students will receive their bachelor degrees as "University Scholars" in their respective majors and have this distinction noted on their diplomas. Graduation through the Davidson Honors College is not connected with the distinctions "with honors" and "with high honors" bestowed on the recommendation of major departments according to certain grade point averages and/or on the basis of exams or other means of assessment in the senior year.
The Davidson Honors College administers the Presidential Leadership Scholarships for incoming freshmen, and several other scholarship programs for currently enrolled students. For further information about these scholarship programs, contact the Honors College. Honors students and those transferring from other institutions are eligible for the general scholarship program. For further information, contact the Financial Aid Office. The Honors College also coordinates University of Montana participation in the National Merit Scholarship program. Four-year awards are available to National Merit finalists who have indicated UM as their first choice for attending college, as well as to semi-finalists. Interested students should contact the Honors College for details as soon as they know their status in the competition.
Students applying to the Davidson Honors College should show evidence of academic talent and motivation. Generally, a minimum high school GPA of 3.5 is expected, as well as an ACT score of 27 or higher, or SAT combined score of 1800. These criteria are not absolute, and highly motivated students are encouraged to apply.
Applications particularly are welcomed from older or non-traditional students and students from varied racial and ethnic backgrounds. College transfer students with a record of strong academic performance (GPA of 3.5 or higher) also are welcome to apply. The Davidson Honors College Application for Admission must be postmarked or submitted online by December 31. Note that all applicants to the Davidson Honors College also must complete a separate application for admission to The University of Montana-Missoula.
The Presidential Leadership Scholarships are The University of Montana's premier academic scholarships, recognizing outstanding talent, academic performance, leadership, and contribution to the community. These awards are renewable for four years, subject to satisfactory performance by the student. Each scholarship includes a full or partial tuition waiver, the value of which varies according to the amount of tuition each year.
Eligible candidates for the Presidential Leadership Scholarship must be recent high school graduates who have not previously enrolled as a regular college or university student. Recent finalists for the Presidential Leadership Scholarship posted an average of 3.98 GPA, SAT combined score of 2100, and ACT composite score of 32.
All Davidson Honors College applications for admission received by December 31 of each year will be considered for the Presidential Leadership Scholarship.
U = for undergraduate credit only, UG = for undergraduate or graduate credit, G = for graduate credit. R after the credit indicates the course may be repeated for credit to the maximum indicated after the R. Credits beyond this maximum do not count toward a degree.
Note: All HC courses require consent of the Honors College unless otherwise noted.
U 120 Introduction to Honors 1 cr. Offered autumn. Interdisciplinary offerings by various faculty. Orientation to practical and theoretical issues facing students entering college.
U 121L Ways of Knowing 3 cr. Offered autumn and spring. A critical assessment of contrasting epistemological stances expressed in various views of God, nature and the self.
U 122E Ways of Knowing II 3 cr. Offered spring. Prereq., HC 121L or LS 151L or LS 152L. This course traces the major Western ethical traditions, examines the influence of those traditions in normative political theory, and provides dramatic illustrations of the moral life.
U 194 Seminar Variable cr. (R-6)
U 195 Special Topics Variable cr. (R-6) Experimental offerings of visiting professors, experimental offerings of new courses, or one time offerings of current topics.
U 196 Independent Study Variable cr. (R-6) Prereq., consent of instr.
U 198 Internship Variable cr. Prereq., consent of instr. Practical application of classroom learning during placements off campus. A maximum of 6 credits of Internship (198, 298, 398, 498) may count toward graduation.
U 202 Introduction to Civic Leadership 3 cr. Offered spring This service-learning course provides students with a broad overview of leadership development through engagement with campus and community organizations. Students will examine a variety of leadership models, analyze their own capacity for ethical leadership, and develop a personal leadership philosophy.
U 270 Service Learning Seminar 2 cr. Offered Wintersession. This service learning course provides students with an in-depth, week-long community service experience in the West. Students participate in a seminar class prior to service and learn through active reflection and discussion. Students will explore aspects of citizenship and civic responsibility for addressing and solving social problems. Students explore aspects of citizenship and civic responsibility to address and solve social problems.
U 295 Special Topics Variable cr. (R-6) Experimental offerings of visiting professors, experimental offerings of new courses, or one time offerings of current topics.
U 298 Internship Variable cr. (R-6) Prereq., consent of instr. Practical application of classroom learning during placements off campus. A maximum of 6 credits of Internship (198, 298, 398, 498) may count toward graduation.
U 320E Research Portfolio Seminar 3 cr. Offered autumn and spring. Designed to assist undergraduate students with their independent research projects. This seminar enables students conducting research in separate disciplines to apply the intellectual strategies and to explore the ethical concerns common to research in most disciplines.
U 395 Special Topics Variable cr. (R-6) Experimental offerings of visiting professors, experimental offerings of new courses, or one time offerings of current topics.
U 396 Independent Study Variable cr. (R-6) Offered intermittently. Prereq., consent of instr.
U 398 Internship Variable cr. (R-6) Prereq., consent of instr. Practical application of classroom learning during placements off campus. A maximum of 6 credits of Internship (198, 298, 398, 498) may count toward graduation.
UG 495 Special Topics Variable cr. (R-6) Experimental offerings of visiting professors, experimental offerings of new courses, or one time offerings of current topics.
U 496 Independent Study Variable cr. (R-6) Prereq., consent of instr.
U 498 Internship Variable cr. (R-6) Prereq., consent of instr. Practical application of classroom learning during placements off campus. A maximum of 6 credits of Internship (198, 298, 398, 498) may count toward graduation.
U 499 Honors Thesis/Project Variable cr. (R-9) Prereq., consent of thesis/project director and dean of Honors College.
James McKusick, Ph.D, Yale University, 1984 (Dean)
Erin Brown Saldin, M.F.A., University of Virginia, 2007 (English)