Honors Program Options at UT Austin
In addition to double-majors and dual-degrees, Plan II Honors students may also combine Plan II with other honors programs at UT. Plan II Honors students combine their Plan II major and Business majors with the Business Honors Program, Plan II and their Engineering major with Engineering Honors, Plan II and their Natural Science major with Dean’s Scholars, and Plan II and their Computer Science major with Turing Scholars. Applicants may apply to Plan II Honors and to Liberal Arts Honors, but may not participate in both programs. However, majors combining Plan II and the honors track in another major in the College of Liberal Arts may participate in some courses offered through the Liberal Arts Honors Programs.
Business Honors Program
The Business Honors Program is modeled after case-based MBA programs. Small classes focus on discussion and presentation, group collaboration, and analytical exercises. Robust programming and dedicated advisors provide students with personalized attention and unique opportunities.
Plan II/Business is the most common dual-degree combination of Plan II Honors majors, with about 120 students (of our ~700 total students in Plan II) seeking a BA and BBA combination with Plan II and one of the majors from the McCombs School. A third (or more) of the students in the Business Honors Program are also Plan II Honors majors. It's a very common combination of many successful and talented students. Approximately one-half of the Plan II/Business dual-degree students complete the two majors and degrees in four or four and 1/2 years.
Engineering Honors Program
The Cockrell School of Engineering offers a select group of students the opportunity to participate in the Engineering Honors Program (EHP). The Engineering Honors Program is a non-degree, four-year program which enhances the undergraduate experience by offering: Engineering Honors scholarships, access to honors housing on campus, honors faculty advisors, social and cultural events, and the opportunity to complete an undergraduate honors thesis. The dual-degree combination of Plan II and a major in Engineering is a five year commitment.
Plan II Honors generally has somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 to 90 Plan II/Engineers at any one time. The great thing about this extremely challenging and dense dual-degree combination of Plan II and an engineering major is that this combination provides students the opportunity to study a very specific field, or to graduate with the necessary credentials to pursue specific careers (for instance, Aerospace Engineering), without having to strictly limit their undergraduate studies to one relatively narrow field of study. Plan II/Engineering leads to a much broader and wider educational experience in a far greater range of disciplines and topics. Plan II/Engineering really provides the complete left-brain/right-brain educational experience.
Natural Science Honors Programs
The College of Natural Sciences offers both college-wide and departmental honors program opportunities that provide small honors classes, dedicated academic advising and participation in the college’s nationally-recognized Freshmen Research Initiative. The college-wide honors programs include the Dean’s Scholars Honors Program and the Health Science Honors Program:
Dean’s Scholars Honors Program
Dean’s Scholars Honors Program is a four-year degree program in which students earn a bachelor of science degree that is designated as an honors degree in any of the majors offered by the College of Natural Sciences. This program focuses on an innovative interdisciplinary curriculum that features more elective hours than
standard degree plans and culminates in an Honors Research Thesis.
Polymathic Scholars (PS) is a unique certificate program that provides selected undergraduates in the College of Natural Sciences and the College of Liberal Arts the opportunity to design an interdisciplinary field of study outside their major. Polymaths admitted to the honors sequence take a series of courses developed specifically for honors students that are taught by distinguished faculty in the sciences and humanities. Once Polymaths have completed the coursework for their self-designed field of study, they conduct a research-based thesis under the direction of a faculty committee.
Health Science Scholars
The Health Science Honors (HSH) Program is UT Austin’s first honors program specifically for students interested in the health professions. In addition to small honors classes, dedicated academic advising and participation in the college’s nationally-recognized Freshman Research Initiative, the HSH Program provides access to an extensive array of clinical and research internships, and will provide support for career exploration and a capstone health sciences presentation.
The departmental honors programs include Computer Science’s Turing Scholars Honors Program and Human Ecology’s Nutritional Sciences and Human Development & Family Sciences Honors Programs.
Turing Scholars Program in Computer Science
The Turing Scholars Honors Program offers an intensive, accelerated path through the core Computer Science curriculum that culminates in undergraduate research in the junior and senior years.
As is true with the Plan II/Engineering combination degrees, the combination of Plan II with the Dean's Scholars science core curriculum honors program (two majors, two honors programs, two degrees) or Plan II/Computer Science/Turing Scholars combination should absolutely be considered to be a five-year commitment. On their own, the Dean’s Scholars and Turing Scholars degree plans are quite challenging requirements. When combined with the Plan II Honors major (and a Bachelor of Arts degree), it’s more challenging and course specific, but we believe, doubly rewarding too. The same is true of a combination of Plan II and the Bachelor of Science option in a science major, particularly if the pre-med course requirements are combined in the mix.
The Honors in Advanced Nutritional Sciences (HANS) and Honors in Advanced Human Development and Family Sciences (HAHDFS) programs are four-year honors degree programs offered by the School of Human Ecology. Both programs offer small honors classes; dedicated advising and support; robust internship opportunities; and faculty-guided independent research projects. Many students from our programs go on to become physicians, researchers, dieticians and entrepreneurs.
Liberal Arts Honors Programs
The Liberal Arts Honors Programs offer the community experience of a small liberal arts college while providing access to the unparalleled resources of a large research university. Liberal Arts Honors students choose from a variety of honors courses in preparation for advanced work in Liberal Arts majors. Program advisers emphasize honors options at UT Austin, study abroad programs and internships. Liberal Arts Honors students graduate broadly and deeply prepared for professional and civic leadership. Many go on to attain graduate degrees.
Questions concerning Plan II admission? Please email Plan II Admissions Director, Kerry Pasquale.
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