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Classics Departmental Honors and the Honors College

Honors in Classical Studies offers exceptional students an opportunity to challenge themselves further through a combination of graduate-level coursework, independent research, and a thesis. Honors is designed to offer students more flexibility, more independence, and a greater challenge to our majors while working in close contact with a faculty mentor.

Departmental Honors Requirements

Each spring, the Faculty recommend and vote to invite high ability Classical Studies majors (usually rising sophomores) to Departmental Honors. To qualify, a student must maintain a GPA of a least 3.5 in Classical Studies, and a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Students may also self-nominate. Students receive a letter of invitation from the Chair and should meet with their Honors Advisor to design and plan their program.

Candidates for Departmental Honors in Classical Studies must take a 300-level CLS course and earn a minimum grade of B+. The second step is to take a three-hour independent research course (CLS 377) with a faculty mentor. By working one on one with an advisor, the candidate researches and writes a thesis, which represents an original research topic developed by the student in the context of this course. The thesis consists of a 25-30 page document with bibliography. Specific requirements will need to be followed when formatting your thesis. Please consult carefully with your advisor when preparing your thesis!

The last requirement is an oral defense of the Honors thesis with the advisor and two other faculty members who serve as readers. Students must receive at least a B+ from the committee. Following the defense, students must submit a bound copy of the thesis to the department.

Students who earn Department Honors are relieved of having to write a thesis in the capstone and will instead write shorter papers as for a normal 400-level course.

Graduating seniors who successfully complete Departmental Honors are recognized at the departmental awards ceremony and at commencement and will have the notation "Departmental Honors in Classical Studies" on their transcript.

Interested students should speak with the Classics honors advisor, Dr. Zara Torlone, for more information.

Past Thesis Topics

Eleanor Miller, “Power in the Myths of Medusa and Persephone: Case-Studies in Classical Reception” (2023) (Denise McCoskey, Andrea Righi, Zara Torlone).

The Honors College

Miami launched a redesigned residential Honors College in Fall 2021, which fosters rigorous academic inquiry for a community of learners who participate in innovative and interdisciplinary research-oriented curriculum with talented faculty.  We look forward to supporting the new Honors College, as we have in the past, by offering innovative teaching and learning opportunities.