Graduate with Honors

Guidelines for Graduating with Honors

Undergraduate Catalog

In order to be eligible to receive a degree with the distinction of Cum Laude, Magna Cum Laude or Summa Cum Laude, a student must complete 45 hours, with letter grade, of the last 66 hours toward the degree at the University of Louisville (in residence). The cumulative grade point average on credit earned at the University of Louisville only will be the grade point average used in all decisions regarding honors.

Cum Laude

A University of Louisville, cumulative grade point average of 3.50 (based on degree applicable credit) and a program/major grade point average of 3.50, must be attained by the end of the first semester of the senior year.

Magna Cum Laude

A University of Louisville, cumulative grade point average of 3.75 (based on degree applicable credit) and a program/major grade point average of 3.75, must be attained by the end of the first semester of the senior year.

Summa Cum Laude

A University of Louisville, cumulative grade point average of 3.75 (based on degree applicable credit) and a program/major grade point average of 3.75, must be attained by the end of the first semester of the senior year. In addition, an Honor's project must be completed and approved. See below for more information.

Guidelines for Summa Cum Laude Distinction

Purpose of the honors project:

The College of Education and Human Development embraces the University's mission as a metropolitan research university committed to advancing the intellectual, cultural, and economic development of our diverse communities and citizens. We prepare students to be exemplary professional practitioners and scholars; to generate, use, and disseminate knowledge about teaching, learning, health promotion and disease prevention, and leadership in public and private sector organizations; and to collaborate with others to solve critical human problems in a diverse global community. We seek to continually improve the quality of life for all in our metropolitan community, the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and the nation.

Project proposals submitted for consideration of Summa Cum Laude should reflect the educational and applied mission of the College. Examples include but are not limited to: collection of primary data from students or teachers, developing a research-based parent or teacher resources, or literature review. Criteria for evaluating the project (a) demonstrated relevance to the student’s program of study and intended career; (b) connection to the mission of the College; and (c) significance of the project. The rubric can be found at the following link:
[CEHD Honors Project Rubric]

Honors Project Development Guidelines

  1. Select a faculty advisor for assistance and guidance in preparing the proposal and paper/project.
  2. Meet with the faculty advisor and obtain preliminary approval of the advisor [CEHD Honors Project Initiation Form] (signed form must accompany the proposal)
  3. Submit the proposal to the Assistant Dean of Student Services for the College of Education and Human Development to obtain final approval of the Honors and Scholarship Committee.
  4. Complete the Honors Project in consultation with the faculty advisor.
  5. Submit the final paper, 250-word abstract and, if applicable, final product to the faculty advisor for preliminary approval and signature [CEHD Honors Project Completion Form] (signed form must accompany the submission)
  6. Submit the completed Honors Project Completion Form, final paper, 250-word abstract and, if applicable, the final product to the Assistant Dean of Students Services according to the schedule below.
  7. Present the final product to the Honors & Scholarship Committee and the Assistant Dean of Student Services.

Proposal Submission Deadlines

The proposal must be submitted to the Assistant Dean of Student Services according to the following schedule:

  • May Degree Applicant: Prior to September 30
  • August Degree Applicant: Prior to October 15
  • December Degree Applicant: Prior to March 30

Proposal Guidelines

Rationale/Literature Review (one page or less)

What other published research has addressed the same or similar problem/issues? Why does your project need to be done? How did the idea originate? What research or literature already exists about this topic?

Purpose (one paragraph)

What do you intend to do?

Significance of the Project (one paragraph)

Why is the project important? Why should you complete this project? What difference will the results of your project make? To whom?

Participants in the project

If you intend to work with students or community members in your project, you must consult your faculty advisor to determine appropriate modes of interaction as well as whether human subjects approval is required.

Materials/Equipment Required

What do you need to complete your project? Is it available?

Products of the project (one page or less)

The Honors Project requires a final paper and presentation (see formatting requirements below). Additional products are encouraged to communicate the results of the project to the Honors & Scholarship Committee, such as a slide show, artistic demonstration, brochure, resource guide.

Final Product/Presentation Guidelines

Paper requirements:

  • Body of the paper should be 22-25 pages, excluding title page and references
  • 12 point Times New Roman Font
  • Double-spaced
  • 1 inch margins

Presentation requirements:

  • 20- minute presentation of project and findings
  • 10- minute Q & A with Honors and Scholarship Committee

Final Presentation Deadlines

The final presentation must be made to the Honors and Scholarship Committee according to the following schedule:

  • May Degree Applicant: Prior to March 31
  • August Degree Applicant: Prior to April 30
  • December Degree Applicant: Prior to November 30
Please Note: The Honors and Scholarship Committee requests the presence of the student's mentor at the project presentation. If the mentor is unable to attend, a written evaluation of the student's project will suffice.