Honors Program

Our honors program

If you are passionate about the work you are doing in the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology, we encourage you to apply for our honors program, beginning the application process in your junior year. Earning an honors degree involves completing either an in-depth research paper or project during your senior year, under the close supervision of a faculty member.

An honors designation is particularly valuable if you wish to pursue a career or advanced degree in Folklore and Ethnomusicology. The work you do to complete your honors project is likely to help you attain those goals.

Guidelines for the senior honors thesis or project

Before beginning an honors thesis or honors project, you must consult with the departmental director of undergraduate studies. Once you are accepted to the honors program, you will receive guidance from a faculty member who will serve as the chair for your honor’s thesis or project committee.

Choose either an honors thesis or an honors project

Honors thesis
An honors thesis demonstrates your ability to carry out independent research on an approved topic and to present an original analysis of that research in the form of a substantive formal paper. The thesis may include fieldwork, library, and/or archival research, and should be approximately 8,000 to 10,000 words (roughly 30-35 pages) in length.

Honors project
An honors project demonstrates your ability to carry out original field and/or library research and to design and present that work in a substantial project appropriate to the professional practices of ethnomusicology and/or folklore. Examples of honors projects include: a museum exhibit, an interactive website, a short documentary, an ethnographic recording, or some other form of public presentation.

Honors projects should be accompanied by a written document that describes the project’s objectives, methodology, and significance in the context of relevant scholarship and practice. Approximately 2,000- 2,500 words (8-10 pages), this paper should include a conclusion and a bibliography. You should choose a project based upon technical skills you have already mastered in an independent practicum or field-experience course.

Prerequisites & Requirements

Students who wish to enroll in the Folklore and Ethnomusicology honors program must have a 3.5 GPA in Folklore and Ethnomusicology courses and a 3.3 GPA overall. To graduate with honors, you must:

  1. maintain these GPA minimums
  2. complete two courses related to the honors thesis/project during the fall and spring semesters of your senior year
  3. present a completed thesis or project by the twelfth week of your senior year