The Davidson Honors College is a national model for the reinvention of public higher education; we are distinguished by our commitment to academic innovation, professional development, and our welcoming community.

The Davidson Honors College is open to students of any major and provides special opportunities for students to enhance their learning and leadership skills within and outside the classroom.

Take a closer look at the DHC by exploring our promotional overview packet or our website.



Thank you for your interest in applying to the Davidson Honors College at the University of Montana in beautiful Missoula, Montana.


In order to complete this application, you'll be asked to provide the following:

  • Basic biographical information
  • Information about your academic background and achievements
  • An electronic copy of your unofficial transcript(s)
  • A short statement (300 words) about your academic interests
  • A brief essay of 600-1,000 words on one of two topics


Essay Prompt 1: Describe an event in your life, a person, a book, or an experience (choose one) that has had a profound effect on you. How has it influenced change in you, your attitudes, and/or your goals?

Essay Prompt 2: Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be a personal challenge or setback, intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma, a community challenge - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could take to identify a solution. Please also discuss the benefits of the solution to you or the broader community and real or potential challenges you faced or could face along the way.


Deadline:  All applications to the Davidson Honors College that are completed by December 7th, 2018 will be considered for the Presidential Leadership Scholarship. Applications received after December 7th, 2018 will be considered for admission to the Davidson Honors College, but NOT for the Presidential Leadership Scholarship. Davidson Honors College applications will be considered only from those who have applied for admission to a four-year undergraduate program at the University of Montana.

We are looking for well-rounded, ambitious, and curious learners. The average Davidson Honors College student has a 3.7 GPA, 27 or higher on the ACT, and 1270 or higher on the SAT. While we look at academic performance and test scores, these criteria are not absolute and all highly motivated students are encouraged to apply. 

Applications are especially welcome from non-traditional students, international students, veterans, and students from all racial and ethnic backgrounds. College transfer students and currently enrolled students at the University of Montana with a record of strong academic performance are likewise welcome to apply. 

Ends on September 20, 2018

Construct Your Own Honors Course Approval Form

Because the Davidson Honors College is committed to student engagement in learning, we offer the opportunity for students to collaborate with faculty in developing their own Honors courses.  Any DHC student in good academic standing may make a regularly scheduled 3- or 4-credit course into an Honors course by approaching the faculty member teaching that course and asking them to grant one credit of independent study (HONR 192, 392, or 492) as a space to complete additional coursework. The faculty member must be willing to evaluate and grade the student’s independent study work, and the student must complete additional assignments (such as additional reading, writing, fieldwork, research, or community service) to earn the additional credit. Students are limited to a maximum of two “construct-your-own” Honors courses that count toward the eight Honors experiences required by the DHC for graduation as a University Scholar.

The independent study work can be used to develop ideas for a capstone Honors project or simply to enhance an existing course. Your faculty mentor will provide the discipline-specific criteria necessary for your work. Generally, it is a good idea to devise independent study coursework that will complement or supplement the material covered in a regular course. For example, a standard textbook can be supplemented with current research articles; a laboratory course can be complemented with readings on the history of the discipline; a research methods course can be supplemented by devising an actual research project.

Guidelines:

·  The Construct Your Own Honors Course Approval Form should be completed by you with support and approval from the faculty mentor and will include a description of the proposed independent study project. The completed form should be submitted no later than the end of the third week of the semester (different deadlines for summer sessions).

·  The online form will ask for your information, your faculty member's information, and a 200-300-word description of the work you propose to add to the existing course to make it into an Honors course.  Be sure that the description includes learning objectives, specific assignments, and the requirements for completion. If you have a project title, please include it. The description should include any scheduled meetings and due dates for materials as discussed between mentor and student.

·  If the proposed faculty mentor for a Construct Your Own Honors Course is not a tenured or tenure-track faculty member at The University of Montana, then a department chair’s approval is required . The department chair’s approval certifies that the faculty member is appropriately qualified to supervise the proposed Honors independent study project. The DHC will request approval when nescessary, however it is your responsibility to speak to both the faculty mentor and department chair prior to submitting the form. 

·  When completing the form, select the appropriate HONR level to complement your existing course. For example, if your non-honors course is a 100 or 200 level, select the HONR 192 option, if the course is a 300 then the 392, and if a 400 level select the 492.

·  Once the Construct Your Own Honors Course Approval Form has been submitted a DHC staff member will email you with registration information.

·  The Honors independent study course must be taken for a traditional letter grade. The regular course grade will NOT be affected by the successful or unsuccessful completion of the independent study project.

· At the end of the semester the DHC will contact the faculty mentor to request the grade. The letter grade will them be recorded through CyberBear. If the independent study coursework has not been completed by the end of the semester, the faculty mentor should still submit an appropriate letter grade (either “I” incomplete or “N” in progress), to be followed by a final grade when the work is complete.

Honors Capstone Approval Form


To qualify for graduation from the Davidson Honors college with the “University Scholar” distinction, DHC students must fulfill a set of academic requirements, one of which is the Honors Capstone Project. Students should begin thinking about and planning for their project during their junior year. Projects can be connected with Capstone requirements in the student’s major(s), minor(s), certificate program, or can be completed independent of other requirements. Plan to discuss possibilities with a faculty member or members in the area you are interested in, as well as with the Director of Student Engagement in the DHC. These projects may take a wide variety of forms and culminate in a thesis, a performance or exhibit, an independent scientific experiment, etc., depending on the student’s major(s), minor, or area of interest. 

Projects are intended to provide DHC students with a substantial capstone experience that encourages them to work in collaboration with a mentor over an extended period of time. These projects should challenge students to draw on knowledge and life experiences that they have attained throughout the course of their education, and apply them to an in-depth investigation of the chosen topic.

Regardless of the discipline(s), topic(s), or nature of the project, all Honors Capstone Projects must include the following elements:

1- Each project must involve significant original research or creative scholarship. This means that you should come up with an original idea, create a plan for your idea that includes background, why you are interested, and how you plan to see the idea through to completion.

2- Each student must have a mentor with expertise in the project area, who will help guide you through the process and be responsible for evaluation and assessment of the project. You should choose a mentor who you feel would add to the quality of your experience. The mentor can be a faculty member or community member (with approval) who can help support you throughout the process.

3- Each project must have a final artifactmost appropriate for the project’s academic alignment. For example, a project in computer science might result in a computer program; A creative writing project could generate a novel; Work in the field on tree swallows could result in a scientific paper in a format associated with a biology journal; A community health project might produce information for a local website; Someone in music might compose a symphony. These artifacts will be evaluated by the mentor based upon their content area knowledge. 

4- Each student will submit a 4-6-page reflectionto the DHC elaborating on the experience in connection with their other honors courses/experiences, as well as their greater UM experience. This will be submitted through a seperate form at the end of your project.

5- Each project must conclude with a public presentation highlighting the results of the project. Several venues are available for these presentations: at symposia or conferences on campus and off, as well as in forums organized for this purpose by the DHC, course presentations, community events, web-based exposure, etc. Talk with your mentor and the Director of Student Engagement about your ideas and options.

All students who complete the Honors Capstone Project are required to submit an electronic copy of their project artifact to the Mansfield Library through ScholarWorks. You can upload many different file types to ScholarWorks to ensure that your project is appropriately represented. 

Getting Started

Ideally, you will begin thinking about your capstone during the junior year. Many major and minor areas offer research methods courses that will help you prepare for research. The DHC also offers a Research Portfolio course that is useful for organizing your thoughts and ideas and prepare to collect and analyze data for your project. Projects can vary in the time they take to complete and are dependent on many variables, some last a semester, some up to two-three semesters. Some projects where human subjects or biosafety hazards are included will need to be approved by the Institutional Review Board (IRB), this process can take some time so be sure to budget that into your project planning.

If you plan to collect data during the summer, you will want to finalize your senior project paperwork before May 1. This will mean identifying your mentor, deciding upon your project, meeting with your DHC advisor to submit the completed project paperwork, and securing IRB approval if needed before heading off to collect data. 

If you plan to complete your project through a course you are taking, you will most likely need to work out the project details in the first few weeks of class. In which case, please submit the completed project paperwork by the end of the third week of class. If you know your professor/mentor you may be able to complete the paperwork in the semester before you take the class, this will expedite the process. Remember, IRB approval can take up to six weeks.

There is also an option to use an Honors course to connect research credit to your project if there is no corresponding class in your area of interest. You can register for HONR 499 for variable credit. Your mentor will be the instructor of record for the course.

You may also be working with a team either through your GLI capstone or for your major. In which case, you might not know the topic of your project until a few weeks into the term. When working with a team, it is important to ensure that you have an integral part in the process. This will be transmitted through your individual reflection, as well as your participation in the public presentation. 

Proposal Guidelines

Along with the cover page with signatures, and the IRB form (if required) you will need to submit a 1-2-page description of your project. Consider the following areas of detail when preparing to submit your Honors Capstone Project paperwork to the DHC:

1- What is the topic?

2- Why are you interested?

3- What are the outcomes of your project? (This can also be tied to the outcomes of a specific course such as the GLI Capstone, HHP Capstone, and others. Your faculty mentor will be able to help you articulate the project outcomes)

4- How do you plan to complete the project? (This might refer to how you plan to collect data, or construct your creative project)

5- Why is this important to your area of study? (“So What?” analysis)

6- What is your plan for working with your mentor and time management?

7- What will your artifact consist of to be submitted to ScholarWorks?

8- Where will you present your work?

Working as part of a team (GLI, HPP, Marketing, etc.)

Teamwork includes important skills that are valued in academic and professional areas, and the DHC wants to support this work through our students’ capstone projects. If your area of study uses a team component for the capstone we can support you in your Honors Project in the following ways:

1- Specified Course

2- Mentor

3- DHC Senior Capstone Form with proposal 

4- Final reflection – Your reflection should include information about how the teamwork skills were included in the capstone project and how they connected with your other courses and experiences in the DHC and at UM (please see the reflection guidelines and rubric)

5- Must be an integral part of the presentation

6- Submit an artifact to ScholarWorks

Registering for credit

The work that goes into an Honors Capstone Project is substantial, having a credit bearing course to represent that work on your transcript is important. If you have a Capstone course that you are using in your major you can enter it on the Honors Capstone Project form. If you need a course to connect your project with you can use HONR 499 variable research course, the important thing to connect the project to a course. 

Reflection Guidelines

Your 4-6-page reflection should include a thoughtful examination of how your Honors Capstone Project connected with your experiences at UM and through the Honors College, and how you utilized specific skills learned through the courses and experiences to complete your project. This reflection should highlight connections between your project and specific examples of learning that occurred throughout your time at UM. For more inforamtion on the reflection, please see the reflection subission form guidelines. 

Independent Study Course Approval Form
Because the Davidson Honors College is committed to student engagement in learning, we offer the opportunity for students to collaborate with faculty in developing their own Independent Study Honors courses.  Any DHC student in good academic standing can work with a faculty member to design an independent study (HONR 192, 392, or 492) experience. The faculty member must be willing to evaluate and grade the student’s independent study work. Students can use two independent study opportunities to count toward the eight Honors experiences required by the DHC for graduation as a University Scholar.

The independent study work can be used to develop ideas for a capstone Honors project or simply to enhance the student's areas of interest. Your faculty mentor will provide the discipline-specific criteria necessary for your work. 


Guidelines:
·  The Independent Study Honors Course Approval Form should be completed by you with support and approval from the faculty mentor and will include a description of the proposed independent study project. The completed form should be submitted no later than the end of the third week of the semester (different deadlines for summer sessions).
·  The online form will ask for your information, your faculty member's information, and a 200-400-word description of the work you propose to add to the existing course to make it into an Honors course.  Be sure that the description includes learning objectives, specific assignments, and the requirements for completion. If you have a project title, please include it. The description should include any scheduled meetings and due dates for materials as discussed between mentor and student.
·  If the proposed faculty mentor for an Independent Study Honors Course is not a tenured or tenure-track faculty member at The University of Montana, then a department chair’s approval is required . The department chair’s approval certifies that the faculty member is appropriately qualified to supervise the proposed Honors independent study project. The DHC will request approval when nescessary, however it is your responsibility to speak to both the faculty mentor and department chair prior to submitting the form.
·  When completing the form, select the appropriate HONR level to complement your existing course. For example, if you are a lower-classperson then select the 198 course, if you are are an upper-classperson then the 398 or 498. The depth and scope of the course will also dictate the level selected.
·  Once the Independent Study Honors Course Approval Form has been submitted a DHC staff member will email you with registration information.
·  The Honors independent study course must be taken for a traditional letter grade.
· At the end of the semester the DHC will contact the faculty mentor to request the grade. The letter grade will then be recorded through CyberBear. If the independent study coursework has not been completed by the end of the semester, the faculty mentor should still submit an appropriate letter grade (either “I” incomplete or “N” in progress), to be followed by a final grade when the work is complete.

Credit for Internship Opportunities

Because the Davidson Honors College is committed to student engagement in learning, we offer the opportunity for students to earn credit for internship opportunities through collaborating with a mentor in developing an academic plan to augment the internship experience. Any DHC student in good academic standing may design an academic internship course for a variable 1-3 credit experience. Students will register for either (HONR 198, 398, or 498) during the term of their internship. The mentor must be willing to evaluate and grade the student’s work, and the student must complete assignments discussed with the mentor (such as reading, writing, fieldwork, research, or community service) to earn credit. Your mentor will provide the discipline-specific criteria necessary for your work. Generally, it is a good idea to devise coursework that will complement or supplement the material covered in a regular course, major, intended profession, as well as the internship experience. 


Guidelines:
·  The Internship Approval Form should be completed by you with support and approval from the mentor and will include a description of the proposed project. The completed form should be submitted no later than the end of the third week of the semester (different deadlines for summer sessions).
·  The online form will ask for your information, your mentor's information, and a 300-400-word description of the work you propose. Be sure that the description includes learning objectives, specific assignments, and the requirements for completion. If you have a project title, please include it. The description should include any scheduled meetings and due dates for materials as discussed between mentor and student.
·  If the proposed mentor for the internship course is not a tenured or tenure-track faculty member at The University of Montana, then a department chair’s approval is required . The department chair’s approval certifies that the mentor is appropriately qualified to supervise the proposed Honors internship credit. The DHC will request approval when nescessary, however it is your responsibility to speak to both the mentor and department chair prior to submitting the form.
·  When completing the form, select the appropriate HONR level to complement your existing course. For example, if you are a freshman or sophmore and the internship is an entry-level position, select the HONR 198 option, if you are more advanced in credits and are generally taking 300 level courses, then the 398 or 498 would be better options.
·  Once the Internship Approval Form has been submitted a DHC staff member will email you with registration information.
·  The Honors internship course must be taken for a traditional letter grade.
· At the end of the semester the DHC will contact the mentor to request the grade. The letter grade will then be recorded through CyberBear. If the internship coursework has not been completed by the end of the semester, the mentor should still submit an appropriate letter grade (either “I” incomplete or “N” in progress), to be followed by a final grade when the work is complete.

Davidson Honors College