Germanic Studies Honors Program

Printer-friendly version


You've decided to major in our department. You're mastering the skills you need to speak, read and write a Germanic language well. But did you know that you can enhance your studies by choosing the HONORS program?

The Honors Program affords Honors Students sustained individual contact with faculty members. Honors Students are called on to work independently, to pursue a project that carries them beyond the regular undergraduate curriculum.

The Honors Program gives you a foretaste of graduate studies; you will discover what it means to be a scholar and what excellence in discipline entails. Such an experience necessarily prepares you for graduate school and other pursuits in a manner that cannot be duplicated:

  • Honors on your transcript will make your applications strong.
  • Sustained personal contact with faculty members means the likelihood of excellent letters of recommendation.
  • Graduate schools and prospective employers will be impressed by the initiative you have taken and the experience you have gained.

All this means you will be among the top candidates for scholarships, teaching assistantships, and other positions. In other words: The HONORS PROGRAM IN GERMAN LANGUAGES AND LITERATURES is the difference between just another degree and the opportunity to challenge yourself and confront your future.


It is recommended that students take on of the following sections/courses prior to entering the Honors Program: 201H, 220H, 321H, 322H.

The program requires 12 credits at the 300 and/or 400 level. These break down into part A (coursework) and part B (research).

Part A: Two upper division courses (6 credits) to be selected from the following courses:

  • GERM 397H: A reading course designed by teacher and student focus or individual reading project.
  • GERM 3-H/4-H: Students may choose from the Honors courses listed in a given semester.

These courses shall be designated by the Honors Committee. By taking these courses, students agree to:

  • A longer paper than is usually required in a 400 level course (7-10 pages in German or the language of study).
  • Additional readings, and
  • Additional meetings with the faculty member to discuss these readings.

Part B: 6 credits of research and thesis writing:

  • GERM 398H: Research course (3 credits). Students will select a thesis topic and conduct the necessary research under the direction of a regular German Department faculty member.
  • GERM 499H: Thesis Writing Course (3 credits). Students will write their thesis under the direction of a regular German Department faculty member. The thesis must be at least 20 pages long and preferably written in German or the language of study. The thesis must be defended before two or more regular members of the German Department faculty. An outside reader may also be invited.
  • Students have the option of an Honors concentration in German Literature, German Language, or German Area Studies. Each proposed Honors concentration must be approved by the Honors Committee.


Students must have an overall GPA of 3.0 and a GPA of 3.5 in the major to be accepted into the department Honors program. To remain in the program, students must also maintain an overall GPA of 3.0 and a GPA of 3.5 in the major. Transfer students with equivalent academic standing at an accredited institution must also meet these eligibility requirements. Under exceptional circumstances, these requirements may be waived by the Honors Committee.

Students may drop the Honors Program without losing any credits acquired.


Participation in the Department Honors Program means:

  • Enrollment in graduate courses
  • Graduate library privileges (lending period of 58 days)
  • Monetary awards and book prizes

Participation in the Departmental Honors Program also enhances the chances of:

  • Nomination to the Dean's Senior Scholar Program
  • Recommendation for the University Undergraduate Apprenticeship in Research and Scholarship
  • Acceptance into the Language House


German Honors Program Director: Dr. Regina Ianozi
Office: 3224 Jiménez
Phone: 301-405-4096