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Top Honors Programs

Honors colleges can be a cost-effective and highly rewarding undergraduate experience for top-notch students. In the best-case scenario, you can enjoy all the benefits of a large university (research opportunities, athletics, and a diverse student body) while still benefiting from an intimate, rigorous, and individualized experience usually reserved for students attending elite liberal arts colleges.

Below, we have compiled a list of the nation’s top honors colleges/programs. The selection was based on the following indicators of program quality.

  • The selectivity of the college/university (overall)
  • The selectivity of the honors program
  • Average honors class size
  • Number of honors classes
  • Availability of honors housing
  • Whether priority registration is offered to honors students

Schools marked with an asterisk (*) rated especially high on several indicators and were ranked among the top 20 honors programs according to our methodology.

 

To view additional data columns, click the + icon to the left of the institution's name.

InstitutionACTSATGPA/Class RankHonors-Only LivingPriority RegistrationRequired # of Honors CreditsSenior Thesis/ProjectClass SizeEnrollment (Approx)Exclusive Scholarships
Arizona State University (Barrett)*29 (Average)1343 (Average)3.8 (Unweighted Average)YesYes36Required157,400Yes
Auburn University29 (Minimum)1350 (Minimum)3.85 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes30Required25-301,500Yes
Boston University331515 (Average)Top 3%YesYes36RequiredUNAVAILABLE600No
City University of New York (Macaulay)*33 (Average)1460 (Average)94.4% (Average)NoYes24+RequiredUNAVAILABLE2,000Automatic (Free Tuition)
Clemson University (Calhoun)*34 (Average)1500 (Average)Top 4% (Average)YesYes24+Optional20 max1,500No
Colorado State University30 (Average)1400 (Average)3.8 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes26Required18-221,800Automatic
Florida Atlantic University27-311210-13603.96-4.0YesN/A120 (All credits taken)Required10:1 ratio500Automatic
Florida State University34 (Average)1500 (Average)4.4 (Weighted Average)YesYes18+Optional15-251,200Yes
George Washington UniversityNo Minimum CriteriaNo Minimum CriteriaNo Minimum CriteriaYesYes33Yes15-20500No
Indiana University32-34 (Minimum)1430-1500 (Minimum)Top 7.5-10%YesNo18+Optional20-254,000Yes
Iowa State University30 (Minimum)1370 (Minimum)3.5 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes15+Varies by major17-30500Yes
Louisiana State University30 (Minimum)1360 (Minimum)3.5 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes32RequiredUNAVAILABLE3,000Yes
Miami University301340 (Average)4.0 (Average)YesYes24Optional201,600No
New Jersey Institute of Technology (Dorman)*33 (Average)1485 (Average)Top 10%YesNo33RequiredUNAVAILABLE700Yes
Northeastern UniversityUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEYesNo18+Optional19 maxUNAVAILABLEAutomatic
Ohio State University32-33 (Average)1470-1490 (Average)Top 5-10%YesYesVaries by majorVaries by major204,000No
Ohio University (Honors Tutorial College)*30 (Minimum)1370 (Minimum)Top 10%YesYes33-39Required20-30250No
Oklahoma State University27 (Minimum)1290 (Minimum)3.75 (Weighted Minimum)YesYes30Required15-222,100Yes
Oregon State University27 (Minimum)1300 (Minimum)3.75 (MInimum)YesYes30Required12-201,200Yes
Penn State University (Schreyer)*Not ConsideredNot Considered4.0-4.33 (Weighted)YesYes35Required24 max2,000Automatic
Purdue University*32 (Average)1450 (Average)3.9 (Unweighted Average)YesYes24Required25 max2,800No
Rutgers University32-33 (Average)1530 (Average)Top 5-10%YesYes21-40Required18 max (Seminars)2,000Automatic
Temple University*33 (Average)1460 (Average)3.95 (Unweighted Average)YesYes30+Optional202,300No
Tulane UniversityUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEYesYes15+RecommendedUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLENo
Texas A&M University28 (Minimum)1360 (Minimum)Top 10%YesYes30RequiredUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLENo
Texas Tech University29 (Minimum)1300 (Minimum)Top 10%YesYes24+Required25 max1,500Automatic
University of Alabama30 (Minimum)1360 (Minimum)3.5 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes18Required15-271,800Yes
University of Arizona31 (Average)1423 (Average)3.89 (Unweighted Average)YesYes30Required25 max4,000Yes
University of Arkansas28 (Minimum)1310 (Minimum)3.5 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes40+Required172,900Yes
University of California, Irvine (Campuswide Honors)*32 (Average)1470 (Average)4.2 (Weighted Average)YesYes15-24RequiredUNAVAILABLE1,000No
University of Central Florida (Burnett)32 (Average)1457 (Average)4.46 (Weighted Average)YesYes24Optional20 max2,000Yes
University of Connecticut*33 (Average)1449 (Average)Top 4% (Average)YesYes15-30Varies by major19 max2,000Yes
University of Delaware*30-331370-14703.99-4.25 (Weighted Average)YesYes21+Optional20-25UNAVAILABLENo
University of Georgia*34.8 (Average)1538 (Average)4.27 (Weighted Average)YesYes27Optional17-202,500Yes
University of Houston29 (Average)1380 (Average)73% in Top 20%YesYes36Optional25 max3,100Yes
University of Illinois (Campus Honors)*UNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEYesYes18RequiredUNAVAILABLE500Yes
University of Iowa30-331400-1500"mostly A's"YesYes24OptionalUNAVAILABLE2,600Yes
University of Kansas*32.4 (Average)1480 (Average)3.95 (Unweighted Average)YesYes21Optional171,300Yes
University of Kentucky32 (Average)1460 (Average)3.89 (Unweighted Average)YesYes30Required15-202,500Yes
University of Maryland*33 (Average)1490 (Average)4.5 (Weighted Average)YesNo18Required (some programs)204,000Yes
University of Massachusetts31 (Average)1411 (Average)4.29 (Weighted Average)YesNo26Required153,000Yes
University of Michigan32-341440-15403.9 (Unweighted Average)YesYesVaries by departmentRequired15-182,000Yes
University of Minnesota32-351430-1540Top 1-4%YesNo30RequiredUNAVAILABLEUNAVAILABLEYes
University of New Mexico28 (Minimum)1320 (Minimum)3.5 (Minimum)YesYes15-51Optional16-171,700Yes
University of Nevada, Reno30 (Average)1380 (Average)3.85 (Average)YesYes30Required"seminar size"1,200Yes
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill*31 (Average)1420 (Average)Top 3% (Average)YesYes24Optional221,800Yes
University of Oklahoma30 (Minimum)1360 (Minimum)Top 10% (Minimum)YesNo18Required19-222,000No
University of Oregon (Clark)*30 (Average)1360 (Average)3.91 (Unweighted Median)YesYes54Required15800Yes
University of Pittsburgh32-33 (Average)1450 (Average)Top 5-10%YesYes12-24Required for (BPhil)181,600Yes
University of South Florida3114184.38 (Weighted Average)YesYes18Required15-202,000Automatic
University of South Carolina*32-341460-15304.71 (Weighted Average)YesYes45Required162,000Yes
University of Tennessee32 (Average)1450 (Average)4.0+(Weighted Minimum)YesYes12-25Required (some programs)15-202,000No
University of Texas (Plan II)*30+ (Preferred)1450+ (Preferred)Top 5% (Minimum)LimitedYes48Required15-17700Yes
University of Utah30 (Average)1390 (Average)3.9 (Unweighted Average)YesNo24RequiredUNAVAILABLE2,300Yes
University of Vermont33 (Average)1470 (Average)Top 10% (Average)YesYes24Required20 max1,100No
University of Virginia (Echols)*35 (Average)1540 (Average)Top 3% (Average)Freshmen onlyYesExempt from all requirementsNoN/A800No
University of Washington32-351380-15303.87-3.99 (Unweighted Average)YesYes19+Optional18-351,100Yes
University of Wisconsin (L&S Honors)Minor ConsiderationMinor ConsiderationTop 5-10%NoNo24+NoUNAVAILABLE1,200No
Virginia Commonwealth University29 (Minimum)1330 (MInimum)3.5 (Unweighted Minimum)YesYes21Required20 max1,000Yes
Washington State University26-281260-13203.7-3.9 (Unweighted Average)YesYes34Required15-25700Yes
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