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How to Earn Honors Credit

Students can earn Honors hours in a variety of ways. 

Traditional courses

Most standard Honors courses are special sections of standard classes with a reduced class size (less than 30) and a specially selected Honors faculty member. These classes typically are more focused on open discussion and interaction. Some Honors courses are only offered to members of the Honors College. These courses are also small in size and are lead by an Honors instructor.

Add-on courses

Students may register for a non-Honors course while also registering for an Honors add-on section for that particular class. Add-on sections delve further into coursework. By completing the regular course and the honors add-on requirements, students receive Honors credit hours equivalent to the number of hours offered for the regular course (typically 3 hours).

Contract courses 

Students may also receive credit for a non-Honors course by contracting it as an Honors class. By adding some extra course requirements (usually through more intense reading requirements, a special paper, and/or a final project), students receive Honors credit for the non-Honors course. In order to do this, students should contact their professor before the semester begins or very early in the semester to fill out a contract form  (see  Contract Course Information ). The form, when completed, will be reviewed on a rolling basis up until the  Friday of week 7 of a given semester.

Upper Division Courses

Certain upper division courses have been designated by their departments as eligible for Honors credit when students earn an A in those courses.  Commonly known as “Honors-for-A’s” courses, they are eligible for this credit only for students enrolling at WVU in the Honors College in Fall 2016 or earlier.  A list of eligible courses can be found  here


Students may apply to receive Honors credit through internships. Interested students should read the  internship information page and then stop in the Honors Office to schedule an appointment with the internship coordinator.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad is highly encouraged for Honors students. Our students are some of the brightest minds of this generation and have come of age in a global world. It is for this reason that international study is often a life changing experience. The Honors College recognizes this and tries to encourage students to take a week, semester, summer, or year to study abroad. Honors students may apply to receive Honors credit for their work while abroad. The requirements for this credit include blogging about the experience or keeping a journal, and writing a formal reflection. In order to apply for credit, students must petition the Honors college during the semester before the study abroad experience begins. For more information about studying abroad, see the Education Abroad WVU website. For information about earning Honors hours, please see our study abroad information.

Independent Study/Research

Departmental research projects and/or independent study experiences may count toward Honors credit hours. For more information, please visit the Independent Study/ Research page.


Upper-class members of the Honors College can serve as peer tutors. Tutors make their services available to the University through the testWELL Learning Center.

Mentoring Honors 298o

Members of the Honors College can serve as mentors, facilitators, and educators for first-year students enrolled in HONR 298o through the Honors Mentoring Program.

Notes on Earning Honors Credit

Please note that Honors hours will not be accrued for courses in which a student earns a D or an F. 

In order to earn Honors hours, students must earn a C or better; therefore, Honors credit cannot be earned for a pass/fail experience.