National Collegiate Honors Council


Date of this Version



Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, 2020, 21(2):95–116


© Copyright 2020 by the National Collegiate Honors Council


This (2019) study assesses student perceptions of an honors college relative to other colleges in an institutional framework. Disproportionately low enrollments in honors from specific majors (particularly those in the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences) prompt researchers to investigate the culture of honors, perceived curricular demands, and the relationship of honors to other colleges and the students they serve. Researchers survey honors and non-honors students (n = 259) across disciplines (n = 59) representing all academic colleges across campus. Data suggest that while a majority of students affirm their abilities to complete the honors curriculum and perceive honors study to be beneficial, fewer than half (.4) of respondents report actively pursuing honors distinction. Researchers identify three major reasons: perceived lack of time, misunderstanding of requirements, and aversion to independent study. Respondents also indicate that their interests in honors might increase if connections between honors and their majors/colleges were more apparent. The authors conclude that student-centered ideas for creating value in honors are essential for future efforts in programming and recruitment.