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James Scholar Honors Program

Being a James Scholar | First-Year James Scholar Designees | Self-Nominating Students | Maintaining Eligibility | Participation in Honors Courses | James Scholar Graduation Honors

The LAS James Scholar Honors Program offers a number of curricular and cocurricular opportunities to high-achieving students. This program is designed specifically for students with a passion to push beyond the typical classroom experience.

Being a James Scholar

Participation in the James Scholar Honors Program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences complements and enriches a student’s educational experience. As part of the honors experience, a James Scholar can:

  • participate in honors courses, including those designed for incoming students
  • transform standard courses into honors courses
  • receive early registration privileges
  • work closely with professors
  • apply for upper-level undergraduate research awards
  • receive invitations to cocurricular and leadership activities
  • be designated as a James Scholar on his or her transcript, awarded annually
  • receive recognition at graduation

First-Year James Scholar Designees

The James Scholar Honors Program offers a number of curricular and cocurricular opportunities to entering first-year students who are invited to participate in the honors program as James Scholar Designees. Opportunities are designed to build a foundation towards discovering a student’s voice, readying the student to make a difference, and becoming a competent and agile learner in the realms of citizenship, stewardship, and leadership. These incoming students are notified of their eligibility by a letter from the dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. No additional information or application, other than the admissions application, is necessary for students to be considered.

Self-Nominating Students

Thank you for your interest in the LAS James Scholar program. We are currently updating our self-nomination procedures for Fall 2014. Please return to this website in late April for the requirements and application process.

Maintaining Eligibility

James Scholars must meet program requirements each academic year to remain in good standing and to continue receiving the program’s benefits. To be certified as a James Scholar in LAS each year, scholars must fulfill the following requirements:

At the end of each academic year, the transcripts of James Scholar Designees are examined to determine if the college’s requirements have been fulfilled. Successful completion of the two requirements results in the placement of “Edmund J. James Scholar” for that academic year on the transcript and nomination for the next year.

James Scholars and James Scholar self-nominees are held responsible for adherence to the rules for Academic Integrity at Illinois (Code of Policies and Regulations Applying to All Students, Article 1, Part 4). Students who are found to have been penalized within the scope of Article 1, Part 4 will automatically forfeit their LAS James Scholar memberships and privileges.

Participation in Honors Courses

James Scholar Designees (First-Year Students)

James Scholar Designees are required to enroll in one required honors course and one additional course for honors during their freshman year. In the fall, they are required to enroll in LAS 122: “Leadership and Society.” In addition to LAS 122, James Scholar Designees are required to enroll in one additional 3-hour course for honors credit, preferably during the fall term of freshman year.

James Scholar Requirements

All sophomore, junior, and senior James Scholars (regardless of admission or self-nomination date) must enroll in two 3-hour courses for honors credit per academic year. There are two ways of doing so:

  • Enrolling in an Integrated Honors Course during registration; this is a course with integrated topics and assignments offered only to honors students that—upon completion of the course with a grade of B- or higher—results in honors credit on the transcript.
  • Completing an Electronic Honors Credit Learning Agreement (EHCLA), a special agreement between a student and instructor that permits James Scholars to transform a “regular” course into an honors course. The student is required to complete additional, course-related assignments or projects as per this agreement. The assignments or projects agreed upon between student and instructor must be academic in nature and serve as enrichment to the regular syllabus. This work may be in addition to or in lieu of regular course work.

James Scholar Graduation Honors

See LAS Distinction and Recognition.