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As a member of the National Collegiate Honors Council, the Academic Honors Program at Colorado Mesa University (CMU) offers highly motivated undergraduates enriched studies in their academic major. Completion of honors requirements varies by academic program, but each includes opportunities for students to actively engage in more advanced study through coursework and a capstone project that can include research or creative work presented in a scholarly venue. Students completing a program's academic honors requirements are recognized at CMU's Commencement Ceremony.

Application Process and Qualifications

General: Students seeking participation in an Academic Honors Program must have earned at least 45 semester credit hours with a minimum 3.5 grade point average (g.p.a.) at the time of application. An application process occurs each spring semester, and interested students should contact the Academic Department Head for the application deadline. In addition to the credit hour and g.p.a. qualifications, an applicant also should submit:

  • the application form found on the reverse side of this page; and
  • a summary of no more than one, single-spaced page that
    • details the applicant's scholarly background, community and/or University service, and academic awards; and
    • describes briefly why s/he is applying for an academic honors program of study.

Admission to the Honors Program is competitive. Applications will be reviewed by faculty members in the appropriate program/department, and students will be notified on their acceptance status within the timeframe indicated in the program-specific information.

Geosciences Program: The applicant must have junior or senior standing.

Program Requirements

General Requirements: All students completing an Academic Honors program of study are expected to complete a senior capstone activity. The activity can range from an honor's thesis to a creative work to an undergraduate research project. Additionally, students must present the results of their activity in a scholarly venue approved by their Academic Honors Program advisor (e.g., CMU's Student Showcase, a regional meeting for the relevant discipline).

Requirements Specific to Geosciences Majors: Students must meet the following requirements to receive honors in Geosciences. Students who do so do not have to complete GEOL 490 Senior Seminar.


  1. Maintain a minimum overall GPA of 3.0.
  2. Complete a year's worth of research work equivalent to six credit hours, to include at least three credit hours of GEOL 497 Structured Research, summer field work, internship work, or other documented efforts approved by the geosciences faculty.
  3. Assemble a thesis committee with a minimum of two CMU Geosciences faculty members. Other professionals may serve as additional members of the thesis committee. One of the faculty members must be the thesis director, and both faculty members must verify that all thesis requirements have been satisfactorily completed. This includes approval signatures by both faculty members on both the thesis proposal and the final thesis copy.
  4. Produce a written thesis proposal, a written thesis, and a final oral presentation. New data must be generated; an honors thesis cannot be a literature review.
  5. Orally defend the thesis in a formal but public setting. Presentations at the CMU Student Showcase will not be accepted for a thesis defense.

Program Contact

Name: Andres Aslan

Phone: 970-248-1614

Email: [email protected]