Graduating with Honors

Calvin challenges its best students by offering an honors program. This program nurtures collaboration between individual students and faculty on projects of mutual interest. All of the degrees offered by the department can be taken for honors.

Graduating with Honors in Computing

In addition to the college-wide requirements, the department adds these requirements:

  • An honors student must take at least two of their honors courses in their major (to complement the two courses outside their major/department that are required by the campus-wide program).
  • An honors program must include MATH 171 (Calculus I), MATH 172 (Calculus II), and MATH 243 (Statistics), and at least four electives. (n.b., the BCS program already includes these requirements). An honors student in information systems majors can substitute MATH 132 and MATH 143.
  • An honors student must propose an honors program (normally in their sophomore year). This program is designed by the student and the student’s mentor, and must be approved by the department. An honors student in information systems students must include at least two of the following: BUS 315, BUS 363, BUS 364, CS 342, CS 374, DATA 303.
  • An honors student must complete a senior honors project, which must be significantly more challenging than a typical senior project. This project must be presented in an appropriate public forum (e.g., a conference or department colloquium) and must be approved by the department (see CS 396/398 for more details on the senior project with honors). In place of the project, an honors student in information systems must do an internship and write a paper that addresses topics such as: an analysis of the organization’s information systems, the effectiveness of a technology or the organizational and/or cultural influences on software creation or adoption.

Honors Courses

The Computer Science Department does not offer any special honors sections of its courses, but any course (at the discretion of the instructor) can be taken for honors by contract. Students who want more of a challenge from a course (even if they are not going to graduate with honors) are encouraged to take courses for honors by contract.

To take a course for honors by contract, students must request this from the professor within the first two weeks of the semester. Granting these requests is up to the instructor for the course. Courses commonly taken for honors include one introductory course (e.g., CS 108, CS 112) and one advanced course of the student’s choice. To request honors by contract, using the following form: