• You must have completed a minimum of 30 credits of college coursework.
  • Course must be 200-level or above.
  • Course must be taken for a letter grade.
  • Cannot be a course currently offered as an Honors course. You cannot contract a class that already offers an Honors section unless you have a scheduling conflict.
  • Limited to two courses per semester. 
Preferred characteristics

At least two of the following characteristics should apply to your Honors option:

  • Allows you to pursue a particular topic of interest in significant depth.
  • Furthers knowledge/skills in your major or minor.
  • Extends knowledge/skills from an Honors area of emphasis
  • Enables investigation of potential capstone project topics.
  • Furthers your progress towards developing a capstone project.
  • Enhances knowledge/skills related to your academic and career goals.

The Honors College no longer accepts paper or electronic application forms for Honors options. All applications must be submitted through MyMadison.

Deadline: End of the fourth week of the semester.

Before applying for an Honors option, you should contact the instructor of the course to discuss ideas for your Honors option project.

To apply, you must submit a detailed proposal which describes the proposed project, timeline for completion, and indicates which of the preferred characteristics of Honors options (see above) apply to your project. (Minimum 300 words.)

Apply for your Honors option through MyMadison by following these steps:

  1. In your Student Center, select Honors Option Application from the Other Academics drop-down menu.
  2. Select your Honors option course from the list of eligible courses that you are enrolled in. Click Continue.
  3. Upload your Honors option proposal. It must be a PDF and the file must be named accordingly: lastname-firstname-courseprefixcoursenumber.pdf. Example: doe-jane-HIST395.pdf.
  4. Answer the graduation question and click Submit.
  5. Submit a new request for an Honors option in a different course or return to Student Center.

NOTE: Only two active/approved Honors option submissions are allowed per semester.

Once submitted, your application will route to the course instructor and Honors College Dean for approval. After approval, the Honors option designation will be added to the class in MyMadison.


If progress is not being made on your Honors option, you should formally withdraw from the Honors option through MyMadision by the semester withdrawal deadline. You can drop an Honors option one time during your time at JMU without penalty.

Completing Your Honors Option

You must submit all work associated with the Honors option to the Honors College by the last day of finals week. 

The faculty member will officially report the completion of your Honors option through MyMadison during grade submission at the end of the semester.

If you fail to complete an Honors option, or fail to withdraw from the option prior to the withdrawal deadline, a grade of no-credit will be recorded in your Honors College file for that Honors option. The Honors option status of the course will be removed from the student system and will not be indicated on your transcript. You are limited to a grade of no-credit for an Honors option one time during your time at JMU without penalty.

Tracking Honors options in MyMadison
Reporting Honors option completion

Faculty member officially reports completion for credit (C), or unsatisfactory completion for no-credit (NC), or incomplete (I) through MyMadison during grade submission at the end of the semester.

If a faculty member fails to officially report completion of the Honors option by the end of the semester, the Honors option designation will be removed from the course and the faculty member will be contacted by the Honors College regarding the status of the option. It is the responsibility of the student to follow up with the faculty member thereafter. The faculty member must contact the Honors College main office to report the successful completion of the Honors option and the Honors option designation will be added to the course. 

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