An Accelerated Core Curriculum for Honors College Students
The Honors College Curriculum is an alternative way to complete the Mason Core general education requirements. For most students, it requires fewer credits to complete the core because our intensive multidisciplinary seminars often count towards more than one Mason Core requirement.
These condensed core classes allow Honors College students to have more space in their schedules to accommodate internships, advanced undergraduate research, study abroad experience, minors, or even double majors.
To complete the Honors College Curriculum, students must fulfill requirements in Research Methods (Requirement I), Honors Seminars (Requirement II), and Advanced Topics (Requirement III). Students must also complete a math requirement, as well as science requirements of their major(s).
- HNRS 110: Research Methods (Fall/4 Credits); HNRS 302: Research Methods II (Fall/3 credits; formerly HNRS 210); or both HNRS 108: Introduction to Research Methods I (Fall/3 Credits) and HNRS 109: Introduction to Research Methods II (Spring/3 Credits)
- HNRS 353: Technology in the Contemporary World (3 Credits).
You may not take HNRS 353 until you have completed HNRS 110, HNRS 108/109, or HNRS 302; it is a good idea to wait until you have finished all other Honors College requirements. HNRS 353 is a topical seminar, so when it is time to register, look at the individual section descriptions to decide which ones are most interesting to you. In consultation with their Honors College advisor and major department, some students may take an advanced multidisciplinary challenge course for 3 credits to substitute for HNRS 353: these courses include HNRS 312, 330, 410, 411, and 430.
- HNRS 122: Reading the Arts (3 Credits)
- HNRS 131: Contemporary Society in Multiple Perspectives (3 Credits)
- HNRS 240: Reading the Past (3 Credits)
At least two advanced topics courses are required for graduation.
- BIOL 213H: Cell Structure and Function (Honors section only) (4 Credits)
- BIOL 214H: Biostatistics for Biology Majors (Honors section only) (4 Credits)
- BIOL 308H: Foundations of Ecology and Evolution (Honors section only) (5 Credits)
- BIOL 311H: General Genetics (Honors section only) (4 Credits)
- BIOL 314: Introduction to Research Design and Analysis (4 Credits)
- BIOL 493: Honors Research in Biology (1-2 Credits)
- BUS 100H: Honors Business and Society (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- BUS 200H: Honors Global Environment of Business (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- CHEM 211H: General Chemistry I (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- CHEM 212H: General Chemistry II (Honors Section only) (3 Credits)
- CS 211H: Object-Oriented Programming (Honors Section only) (3 Credits)
- CS 390: Research and Project Design Principles in Computing (3 Credits)
- ECON 103H: Contemporary Microeconomic Principles (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- ENGR 107H: Introduction to Engineering (Honors section only) (2 Credits)
- HHS 492: Internship in Clinical Research (3 Credits)
- HNRS 130: Conceptions of Self (Philosophy/Religion), if not taken to satisfy Requirement Two (3 Credits)
- HNRS 230: Cross-Cultural Perspectives (Social Science with a Non-Western Perspective), if not taken to satisfy Requirement Two (3 Credits)
- HNRS 312: Research in the Public Sphere (0-3 Credits)
- HNRS 330: Research, Technology, and Online Community (0-3 Credits)
- HNRS 410: Multidisciplinary Researcha and Creative Projects Seminar (0-3 Credits)
- HNRS 411: Honors College Thesis (0-3 Credits)
- HNRS 430: Multidisciplinary Challenges in Professional Environments (0-3 Credits)
- MATH 116: Analytic Geometry and Calculus II (Honors) (4 Credits)
- MATH 215: Analytic Geometry and Calculus III (Honors) (3 Credits)
- MATH 216: Theory of Differential Equations (3 Credits)
- PHYS 160: University Physics I (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- PHYS 260: University Physics II (Honors section only) (3 Credits)
- UNIV 495: Undergraduate Research Scholars Program Seminar (0-3 Credits)
- An approved independent study in the major at the 400-level or above
The Honors College science requirement mirrors the science requirement of a student’s college and major. Please see the sample schedule for your major for further details on the science courses that will be best for you.
The only courses that satisfy this requirement for the Honors College are:
- HNRT 125: A Liberal Arts Approach to Calculus
- HNRT 225: Applied Calculus
- MATH 113: Analytic Geometry and Calculus I
- MATH 123: Calculus with Algebra/Trigonometry, Part A and MATH 124: Calculus with Algebra/Trigonometry, Part B
- MATH 108: Introductory Calculus with Business Applications
- MATH 111H: Linear Mathematical Modeling (Honors Section Only)
Which math course is right for you?
Majors may have specific math requirements, so please consult the advising sheet for the majors that interest you to understand what those majors require.
Honors College students fulfill their quantitative reasoning requirements in various ways.
Most (but not all) students in the humanities, social sciences, as well as some students in life and health sciences
- HNRT 125: A Liberal Arts Approach to Calculus (for those with little or no prior calculus experience)
- HNRT 225: Applied Calculus (for students who have taken calculus in High School), or
- MATH 111H: Linear Mathematical Modeling
- Any of the approved math classes from the above list you have placed into.
Students pursuing degrees from the School of Business
- MATH 108: Introductory Calculus with Business Applications, or
- HNRT 225: Applied Calculus (for students who have taken calculus in High School),
Students interested in fields with more rigorous quantitative requirements, including economics, computer science, engineering, and most natural sciences.
- MATH 113: Analytic Geometry and Calculus I, or
- MATH 123: Calculus with Algebra/Trigonometry, Part A & MATH 124: Calculus with Algebra/Trigonometry, Part B
Students interested in MATH 108, MATH 113, or the MATH 123 & 124 sequence must take Mason’s Math Placement Test or earn qualifying scores on an AP Calculus or IB Math exam. If you do not place into the Math course required by your major, you needn’t fear – simply ask your advisor about your options. You may simply need to take some pre-requisite courses first.
Students who intend to take HNRT 125 or HNRT 225 (for students who have already taken an introductory calculus course) are not required to take the Math Placement Test. However, if they have an SAT quantitative score lower than 540 or an ACT quantitative score lower than 22, and cannot pass the Algebra I portion of the Math Placement Test, they are strongly encouraged to take MATH 008, the Mason Online Algebra Program.