University of California, Riverside

University Honors


Honors, the place to make a difference

Faculty Roles in University Honors

UC Riverside faculty play a major role in the success of University Honors through engaging in program development, teaching, and mentoring. University Honors courses are taught by full-time faculty whose home departments reside in the colleges of CHASS, CNAS, BCOE, and SOBA.

University Honors Faculty Committee

The University Honors faculty foster an academic and social environment to promote the standards of University Honors by diversifying the spectrum on honors classes, recruiting professors to teach new honors courses, and engaging with the Honors students.

Faculty Representatives

University Honors Teaching Faculty

University Honors prides itself in partnering with UCR's best and most engaging instructors to provide Honors students a small classroom setting that maximizes the professional interactions among faculty and students. University Honors courses are small, no more than 24, allowing the subject matter to be examined in greater depth and with more intensity than a regular university class.

Faculty who teach in University Honors are exceptional instructors and leaders in their fields of research, scholarly work, and artistry. They are enthusiastic and ready to challenge highly motivated students. As appropriate, faculty will engage students in seminar style discussions, promote writing, presentation development, and challenge students to think globally and discover international connections. Classes may also include research components and other experiential instruction. 

University Honors Ignition Seminars

Ignition Seminars are designed to present intriguing topics to University Honors freshmen through a small classroom setting that promotes student and faculty engagement. Faculty leading these seminars present the topics in an engaging multidisciplinary approach that opens doors to various disciplines and different academic majors.  The Ignition Seminars emphasize the skills of discussion, listening, writing, critical and synthetic thinking, and leadership.

Faculty are selected not only for their knowledge and interest in their subject but also for their commitment to undergraduate Honors education, particularly the freshmen class. The seminars are offered in Fall, Winter, and Spring.

University Honors Section:

Honors sections of courses (designated by an "H" suffix) typically have a smaller class size, and provide students with a more in-depth and challenging exploration of the course subject matter, than their non-Honors equivalents.  The H designated courses are taught by UCR faculty and are usually restricted to students in the University Honors, creating an environment of academic excellence and inquiry.

Scheduling of Honors Courses

Each Fall University Honors will send a call to departments who have classes that have been taught in University Honors to solicit interest in teaching for the next Academic Year. During this call University Honors will welcome proposals for new offerings of H designated courses. 

Proposing a New University Honors Ignition Seminar or Section:

Faculty or departments interested in developing new H designated course offerings should contact the University Honors Director. If the course mission meets the program's instructional mission, the Director will request a written proposal that will be reviewed by the University Honors Instructional Committee. Approved course proposals will be assigned to a University Honors Staff member to assist the faculty in submitting the new course proposal to the Academic Senate for approval. Submission deadlines for new courses are typically two quarters in advance, thus it is important to plan early.

Faculty interested in an Honors Section should propose the section to the department, as well as to University Honors.  Upon approval from the department and University Honors the faculty may then request that the home department include a University Honors section in its teaching load, for which the department will be reimbursed funding, negotiation of how the payment will be applied, will be between the faculty and the department.

University Honors Faculty Mentoring

As a result of the small course settings, faculty and students often develop relationships that continue after the course is over.  Students may continue to take courses from the faculty in their department or engage with them in their research. These mentoring relationships are encouraged and often lead to more formal mentorship of the Honors thesis/capstone project.

Mentor Guidelines for Thesis/Capstone Project

3rd and 4th year of University Honors fosters the chance for qualified juniors and seniors to work on a substantial and independent project. The project can consist of a thesis, a major written work, creative project, portfolio, or performance, publishable article, a group project or an expanded internship. The student must identify a project, prepare a goal statement, and identify a faculty mentor who will guide the project.

Seeing an Honors thesis/project through completion is time-consuming and must be carried out by the student, faculty, and University Honors Staff members working together in a disciplined way over a sustained period. Students are expected to put their best work into their honors project. Faculty mentors are expected to guide students to produce their best work.  University Honors staff members serve as motivators and mentors based on deadlines and necessary paperwork.

Each person has responsibility to see that the necessary work is completed on time. Scheduled meetings should be coordinated as well as establishing timelines for expected progress.

University Honors depends on the guidance of the faculty in their expertise and as an academic support to the students. The signature on the application indicates the mentor’s dedication to assisting the student and the signature on the title page of the final submission indicates the faculty’s support of the submission meaning that it is honors level work and is above an average undergraduates work.

In the event a faculty member's department does not have research or thesis courses approved at the Honors level, 197H and 195H have been approved through the HNPG designation.

The program typically says a student should do at least the amount of work equal to or more than three quarters of four units of academic credit (250+ hours of work towards their project).

Contact Information:

For information on working with Honors, please contact the staff at University Honors.

Call (951) 827-5323 and ask to speak to the coordinator of the program you are interested in.

Want to chat with Honors Faculty? Come to their office hours.

More Information

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

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Department Information

University Honors
381 Skye Hall

Tel: (951) 827-5323
Fax: (951) 827-5320

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