The Honors Program at Abraham Baldwin Agriculture College is designed for highly skilled and motivated students who have demonstrated superior academic and/or leadership achievements and desire to enter a living and learning community with similarly motivated students. Honors students are expected to be engaged in the interactive learning process the College provides for them, both in and out of the classroom. To support and nurture an interactive learning environment, Honors classes are small, discussion-based, and taught by faculty dedicated to the Honors Program mission. Honors course work differs from general course work in breadth and depth of exploration of subject matter and, as much as possible, inclusion of both primary and secondary sources of information. Honors students are expected to exhibit and further develop cognitive engagement in the learning process and reflect on the meaning of what they are learning in their own lives. Ultimately, the goal of the program is to produce young adults who will become enlightened leaders in the campus community, and in their future communities of the larger world.
- Scholarships: The Honors Program awards need- and merit-based scholarships to select Honors students.
- Priority Registration: all Honors Program students receive Priority I registration to register for classes as soon as they open.
- Housing: the Tifton site offers a special wing in the Lakeside dorm for Honors students to live and learn together.
- Conference Opportunities: students are encouraged to submit proposals for state, regional, national, and professional conferences.
- Honors Lounge: a private lounge for studying and socializing at the Tifton site.
- Special Events: educational trips, guest speakers, and film events offer honors students learning opportunities outside the classroom.
- Recognition: special recognition is given to Honors students at the College’s annual Honors Day program and at the graduation ceremony.
The Honors Program offers a second home here at ABAC for intellectually talented and strongly motivated students. In Honors, students gain the most rewarding college experience possible by developing a strong sense of intellectual and personal community. Honors students enjoy the benefit of meaningful connections across disciplines and close, hands-on mentorship with our faculty right from the start of their time at ABAC. Honors prepares students from all academic programs to advance their education, take on innovative projects, prepare them for a rewarding professional life, or further graduate study. Rewarding courses and engaging professors place Honors students on a path toward academic and professional success and build a close, tight-knit community that defines the Honors experience.
The Honors Program offers students two opportunities to enrich their experience and to earn recognition – by completing the Honors’ Core and by working closely with faculty mentors in their disciplines in upper division coursework and research.
The heart of our program is in our Honors core courses. All Honors freshmen participate in our two introductory Honors seminars in their first year at ABAC and 12 hours of Core Honors courses. Students pursuing Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees in any discipline can be recognized for completing the Honors Core and are recognized with a medal at graduation. The Honors Program offers the following courses on a regular, rotating basis:
- BIOL 1107H – Principles of Biology I
- BIOL 1108H – Principles of Biology II
- CHEM 1211H – Principles in Chemistry I
- CHEM 1212H – Principles in Chemistry II
- COMM 1100H – Human Communication
- ECON 2105H – Principles of Macroeconomics
- ENGL 1101H – Composition I
- ENGL 1102H – Composition II
- ENGL 2111H – World Literature I
- ENGL 2112H – World Literature II
- HIST 2111H – United States History I
- HIST 2112H – United States History II
- POLS 1101H – American Government
- HNRS 1102 – Honors Seminar
- HUMN 1101H – Topics in the Humanities
Honors students pursuing a Bachelor’s degree at ABAC have the unique opportunity to customize their education to meet their specific goals and interests by working with the Honors Program and partnering with our faculty by adapting the content or scope of an existing course, pairing students with faculty to undertake mentored research outside the classroom, supporting student research through conference participation and senior projects.
- Students who complete the 12-hour Honors Core need to select three of the following options, including at least one course contract.
- Students who do not complete the Honors Core, including transfer students, need to select five options, including at least two course contracts.
Course Contract: Any 3000 or 4000 level course section can be converted to an Honors section via an Honors Contract. With approval from and in coordination with the course instructor, an Honors curriculum is created by the student. The Honors curriculum should reflect the Honors Program learning outcomes (found on the ABAC Honors Program website). Honors Contract work is not simply extra work. The work can be different, creative, or more in-depth than regular assignments. Ideally, the faculty member and student will create work that targets a student’s intended professional goals.
Conference Presentation: All Honors students are encouraged to submit to academic conferences. These conferences are platforms upon which students enter the realm of professional communication. The Honors program offers state, regional, and national conferences to which a student may submit proposals for presentation. Other discipline specific conferences are available through your academic mentors. This Honors option requires the student to submit a conference proposal, be accepted, and present at the conference. The Honors Program has scholarships available to students to cover all or part of travel expenses and registration fees associated with presenting at conferences.
Honors Conference Resources
Participating in academic research mentored by a professor allows Honors students to see their academic field in action. No longer is Biology just in the textbooks or Wildlife just in the classroom. With mentored research, students get to do what a Biologist does or what a DNR officer does. Earning a mentored research slot with a professor takes an excellent academic track record and open dialogue with your professors. The first step is communicating that you are interested in this type of experience. Your mentored research may go beyond one semester, so a mentored research form must be submitted before your research begins so that the honors director can evaluate the units to be allotted for your work. The Honors Program has funding available to cover costs associated with undertaking certain mentored research projects.
Honors Capstone or Senior Project
A capstone or senior project can be converted to an Honors one via an Honors Contract following procedures similar to those for modifying a course section. With approval and in coordination with the project mentor, an Honors curriculum is created by the student. The Honors curriculum should reflect the Honors Program learning outcomes (found on the ABAC Honors Program website). Although Honors Capstones or Projects will require extra work, they should not simply require more work. Instead, they might involve more extensive engagement with current research, more complex research questions, experimentation, surveying, or analysis. They might also encourage a greater degree of inter-disciplinary collaboration, interaction with multiple faculty mentors, or application of their ideas to real-world problems. Ideally, the faculty member and student will create work that targets a student’s intended professional goals.
Admission to the ABAC Honors Program requires a separate application from the College. We consider students for Honors based on a holistic assessment of academic and intellectual potential. Established academic performance, including GPA and courses taken in high school, factor into our decision-making process, but so do other aspects of your background, like extracurricular involvement, community engagement and service, and how you show your intellectual curiosity, responsibility, independence, and personal goals.
The Honors Program has a rolling application process. Applications are reviewed on a monthly basis throughout the academic year and we send out notification letters in the middle and end of each term.
Honors also awards merit- and needs-based scholarships through our application. To be considered for an Honors scholarship, submit your application by March 1st. For priority admission to the Honors Program and to ensure placement in Honors courses for the Fall semester, applications should be received by May 1st.
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