UT Tyler Honors Program
Honors Contract Courses
Within your major, you will choose two courses—typically junior and/or senior level—in which you will complete additional work under "contract" with a faculty member. Contracts may include an additional project, additional readings, additional meetings with a faculty member, additional research time in the faculty member's lab, etc.
You will sign a contract at the beginning of the course with the faculty member specifying what you are "contracting" to do in addition to the normal requirements of the course. Your honors adviser will work with you and your major adviser to select the right courses and approve the contract.
Please complete the online contract course form. This form includes responsibilities of both students and faculty. It also serves as a FAQ.
- The course must be 3000 or 4000 level and approved by a member of the Honors staff.
- Students and faculty should plan to meet at least two times (after the initial meeting) during the course of the semester to discuss the Honors contract components of the class.
- The student’s grade should reflect the regular work done in the course (i.e. exams, papers, labs, etc.) Honors credit will be awarded by the faculty member upon satisfactory completion of Honors elements.
- Honors elements should be graded on a pass/fail basis, independent of the regular graded coursework.
- Once the Honors staff has confirmation of completion of Honors elements, s/he will contact the Office of the Registrar to ensure that an Honors designation appears on the student’s transcript.
- In order to earn Honors contract course credit, the student must earn a grade of B or higher, as well as complete the contract work.
- If a student is unable to complete the honors elements of the contract, s/he should consult the faculty member and the Honors staff to discuss options. Failure of the Honors elements should not be the basis of an incomplete.
Honors student’s rights and responsibilities:
- To contact a faculty instructor and communicate interest as early as possible in the semester.
- To submit the Honors Contract Course Agreement no later than the third Monday after the start of classes (after speaking with faculty member).
- To be proactive in developing and articulating the additional work to be done in this Honors contract components of the course.
- To complete the assignments.
- To communicate with the faculty member and the Honors staff throughout the semester.
Faculty instructor’s rights and responsibilities:
- To accept or decline to work with a student on an Honors contract course.
- Faculty may decline for any reason.
- To meet with the student at least three additional times outside of class to discuss Honors contract work.
- To guide students in articulating and completing contract work in this class.
- To hold students to the Honors Contract Course Agreement.
- To fill out a progress report mid-semester and final evaluation.
Spring 2021 Contract Course Timeline
January 25: Contract course proposal form is due (see link above). The student will complete this form. *HIM psychology or HIM nursing students do not need to fill out a contract course proposal form.
March 15: Progress report on contract course is due. Honors staff will send faculty members this form to complete.
April 23: All projects should be turned in to the faculty member unless prior arrangements have been made. Additionally, student self-evaluation form is due.
May 5: Faculty evaluations forms due.
** Psychology and Nursing students complete contract courses through Honors in the Major.
**Students majoring in biology will follow this sequence for their junior year:
*Students will enter a trial semester where they will rotate between different labs to find a faculty member’s lab that interests them. Students must explore at least two different labs and will initiate contact with faculty
By the end of this semester, students and faculty member must enter into a research contract and turn it into the Biology Chair and Honors Program.
*Remainder of semesters: Pick a professor to work with, articulate a research problem in collaboration with that faculty member and do a literature review of the problem. Deadline is to be determined with the participating faculty member.
Here is a short video outlining expectations for faculty role in contract courses: