Engineering Honors Program

The College of Engineering participates in the University of Arkansas Honors Program, which challenges superior students with a more in-depth academic program and research experience. The Honors program provides a structure for working more closely with faculty members and other students in a team environment. Participation in the Engineering Honors Program is highly recommended for individuals planning academic or research-related careers that require considerable critical and original independent thinking, but it is also quite useful for students wishing to explore career potential in a number of areas.

Apply to the Honors College

College Requirements

Admission requirements

  • Current students must have at least a 3.50 cumulative GPA at the University of Arkansas to be eligible
  • Entering freshmen must have at least a 3.50 high school GPA and at have at least a 28 composite score on the ACT. Entering freshmen who are eligible are admitted during the orientation process. 
  • Entering transfer students must have a 3.50 GPA on their transfer work
  • New students not initially qualifying for the Engineering Honors Program are eligible after one term if they earn at least a 3.50 cumulative GPA

Honors Graduation Requirements

  • Complete a minimum of 12 hours of Honors courses
  • A minimum of 6 of these 12 hours must be in engineering. The available engineering honors courses are found in the departmental requirements section below.
  • For the honors courses outside of engineering, there are many options that will count toward your engineering degree requirements. Many courses on the approved humanities/social science elective list also have honors sections. Calculus and physics honors courses are also available.
  • Participate in an undergraduate research or design experience, and prepare an undergraduate thesis
  • Fulfill any additional departmental requirements.

To retain status in the Engineering Honors Program, a student must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50. If a student’s cumulative GPA falls below 3.50, the student will receive a warning from the Dean’s office. If the student’s cumulative GPA falls below 3.50 for two consecutive semesters (not including the summer), the student will be dropped from the Honors College. The student may reapply once his/her cumulative GPA is 3.50 or above.

Honors Advisors

Department Representative Email address
Biological Engineering Brian Haggard haggard@uark.edu
Biomedical Engineering Tim Muldoon tmuldoon@uark.edu
Chemical Engineering Jamie Hestekin hestekin@uark.edu
Civil Engineering Rick Coffman rick@uark.edu
Computer Engineering Matt Patitz patitz@uark.edu
Computer Science Pat Parkerson jparkers@uark.edu
Electrical Engineering Jingxian Wu wuj@uark.edu
Industrial Engineering Kelly Sullivan ksulliv@uark.edu
Mechanical Engineering Larry Roe lar@uark.edu
College Director Richard Cassady cassady@uark.edu

Departmental Requirements

Biological and Agricultural Engineering

Biological and Agricultural Engineering offers an Honors Program for students affiliated with the Honors College. Graduation with Honors requires successful completion of the departmental Honors Program, which consists of:

  1. Completion of BENG 451VH, Honors Thesis of at least 3 semester credit hours. This course offers the student an opportunity to engage in high-level undergraduate research/design under the direction of a BENG faculty advisor or an Adjunct BENG faculty advisor. A written thesis is required, and a defense of this thesis will be made to a faculty committee who will determine its acceptability. BENG 451H will qualify as a BENG engineering/technical elective.
  2. Completion of BENG 3113H and BENG 3113LH, Measurement and Control for Biological Systems. This 3 credit hours course offers the student an opportunity to engage in high-level practice of applying biological engineering instrumentation to complex, real-world problems through an honors project that is an additional requirement to the standard version of the course. Honors students will be required to apply the knowledge gained from this course to an open-ended project. This additional requirement will add social, political, safety, economic and communication factors to the design.
  3. Fulfillment of other Honors graduation requirements as established by the College of Engineering and the Honors College.

The following Biological Engineering courses are offered for honors credit:

  • BENG 3113H – Honors Measurement and Control for Biological Systems
  • BENG 451VH – Honors Thesis

Chemical Engineering

At least 6 of the 12 hours must be taken from the list of Chemical Engineering courses shown below.

  • CHEG 1123H – Honors Introduction to Chemical Engineering II (Sp, Fa)
  • CHEG 2133H – Honors Fluid Mechanics (Sp, Su, Fa)
  • CHEG 2313H – Honors Thermodynamics of Single-Component Systems (Sp, Su, Fa)
  • CHEG 3143H – Honors Heat Transport (Sp, Fa)
  • CHEG 3153H – Honors Non-equilibrium Mass Transfer (Sp, Su)
  • CHEG 3323H – Honors Thermodynamics of Multi-Component Systems (Sp, Fa) CHEG 3333H – Honors Chemical Engineering Reactor Design (Sp, Su)
  • CHEG 4163H – Honors Equilibrium Stage Mass Transfer (Fa) CHEG 4413H – Honors Chemical Engineering Design I (Sp, Fa) CHEG 4423H – Honors Automatic Process Control (Sp)
  • CHEG 4443H – Honors Chemical Engineering Design II (Sp, Fa) CHEG 4813H – Honors Chemical Process Safety (Fa)

The Honors project and thesis is the distinguishing feature of the Honors program, and represents the culmination of the Honors experience. The Honors project requirement may be satisfied in one of the following ways:

  • Completion of the AIChE Design Problem as an individual, according to contest rules, as part of the requirements for CHEG 4443, Design II
  • Completion of a design contest problem as part of a team, such as the WERC or
  • EPA-P3 competition in CHEG 4443, Design II
  • Completion of a research project through CHEG 488V, Special Problems, or as an Honors research project, under the direction of a faculty mentor
  • Regardless of the type of Honors project, an Honors thesis and an oral presentation will be prepared by the student. The Honors thesis must be approved by the faculty mentor and the Department Honors Committee. The student is not given Honors credit for the Honors thesis.

Computer Science and Computer Engineering

The Honors Program in Computer Science and Computer Engineering is designed for the superior student and is intended to help the student develop a more comprehensive view of Computer Science and Computer Engineering. The program provides a vehicle for the recognition of achievements of work beyond the usual course of study. Higher degree distinctions are recommended only in truly exceptional cases and are based upon the candidate's whole program of honors studies.

The department considers the following requirements necessary for graduation with honors:

  1. The candidate must satisfy the requirements set forth by the College of Engineering.
  2. A student must obtain at least a 3.50 grade-point average in required Computer Engineering and/or Computer Science courses.
  3. The student must complete 7 hours of Honors credit in the major, which includes 4 hours of Honors Thesis taken as two successive semesters of CSCE 4912H or CENG 4912H and 3 hours of non-thesis.

The following Computer Science and Computer Engineering courses are offered for honors credit:

  • CENG 1113H – Honors Introduction to Computers CENG 1123H – Honors Introduction to Programming CENG 4423H – Honors Computer Systems Analysis CENG 4912H – Honors Thesis
  • CSCE 2143H – Data Structures
  • CSCE 4912H – Honors Thesis
  • CSCE 5XXX: Any of the 5000-level CSCE elective courses can be taken as a technical elective for Honors credit

Civil Engineering

Students enrolled in the Honors College who are to receive the Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering must complete a minimum of 12 hours of honors credit. At least 6 hours must be completed within the Civil Engineering program including at least 3 hours resulting in an Honors Thesis. The CVEG honors courses are acceptable as technical electives. The following Civil Engineering courses are offered for honors credit:

  • CVEG 491V H Honors Studies in Geotechnical Engineering (1-6)--The study of advanced topics in the geotechnical engineering field. May include participation in geotechnical engineering courses normally available only to graduate students. Course may be repeated for up to 6 hours total credit with approval of the CVEG honors advisor. Prerequisites CVEG 3133 and enrolled in the Honors College.
  • CVEG 492V H Honors Studies in Environmental Engineering (1-6)--The study of advanced topics in the environmental engineering field. May include participation in environmental engineering courses normally available only to graduate students. Course may be repeated for up to 6 hours total credit with approval of the CVEG honors advisor. Prerequisites CVEG 3243 and enrolled in the Honors College.
  • CVEG 493V H Honors Studies in Structural Engineering (1-6)--The study of advanced topics in the structural engineering field. May include participation in structural engineering courses normally available only to graduate students. Course may be repeated for up to 6 hours total credit with approval of the CVEG honors advisor. Prerequisites CVEG 3304 and enrolled in the Honors College.
  • CVEG 494V H Honors Studies in Transportation Engineering (1-6)--The study of advanced topics in the transportation engineering field. May include participation in transportation engineering courses normally available only to graduate students. Course may be repeated for up to 6 hours total credit with approval of the CVEG honors advisor. Prerequisites CVEG 3413 and enrolled in the Honors College.
  • CVEG 4983 H Undergraduate Honors Thesis--Prerequisites: enrolled in the Honors College.

Electrical Engineering

  • ELEG 4061H – Honors Electrical Engineering Design I, 1 credit
  • ELEG 4073H – Honors Electrical Engineering Design II, 3 credits
  • ELEG 400VH – Honors Senior Thesis, a minimum of 1 credit hour

The following electrical engineering courses are offered for honors credit:

  • ELEG 3XXXH: All required 3000-level ELEG courses have an honors section
  • ELEG 487VH: Honors Special Topics in Electrical Engineering
  • ELEG 488VH: Special Problems, individual study and research on a topic mutually agreeable to the student and a faculty member.
  • ELEG 4XXXH: Most 4000-level ELEG elective courses have an Honors section
  • Any ELEG 5000-level elective courses can be taken as a technical elective for Honors credit

Industrial Engineering

To graduate with honors with honors the industrial engineering department, students must

  • Be a member of the Honors College
  • Have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 on all courses attempted at the University of Arkansas
  • Have completed at least 12 hours of honors coursework with at least 6 of those hours being at the 3000-level or above in the College of Engineering
  • Have completed an honors thesis

Options for Upper-Level Coursework

  • The student may complete one or more INEG 4103H: Honors Special Problems. The instructor must be a tenured or tenure-track member of the INEG faculty. The honors thesis may be the end result of INEG 4103H. One INEG 4103H can count as an INEG Technical Elective.
  • The student may take INEG 5000-level courses for honors hours. This is subject to the approval of the instructor. The instructor must fill out an Out of Degree Registration form from the Graduate School to enroll in the course. These 5000-level courses may count as INEG Technical Electives.
  • The student may take any engineering honors course for honors hours. Such courses may count as INEG Technical Electives provided they meet the INEG technical elective requirements. These courses will be designated with the H in the Catalog of Studies. A number of honors course sections have been created for both required and elective IE courses.

The Honors Thesis is a written document that summarizes the student’s individual research effort conducted under the supervision of a tenured or tenure-track member of the INEG faculty. This research may or may not be funded by the faculty mentor. The written document and a corresponding oral presentation (defense) must be approved by the faculty mentor and a second, tenured or tenure-track member of the INEG faculty.

Mechanical Engineering

  1. Completion of MEEG 4903H, Honors Research. This course offers the student an opportunity to engage in high-level undergraduate research under the direction of a faculty advisor. A written thesis is required, and a defense of this thesis will be made to a faculty committee who will determine its acceptability.
  2. Completion of at least one MEEG honors course in addition to MEEG 4903H. Honors sections are offered for selected 4000-level courses and are listed in the current University catalog. All MEEG 5000-level and higher courses may be taken for honors credit.
  3. Fulfillment of other Honors graduation requirements as established by the College of Engineering and the Honors College.

The following Mechanical Engineering courses are offered for honors credit:

  • MEEG 4103H – Honors Machine Element Design
  • MEEG 4303H – Honors Materials Lab
  • MEEG 4483H – Honors Thermal Systems Analysis and Design
  • MEEG 4903H – Honors Research
  • MEEG 491VH – Honors Special Projects

Requirements to Graduate with Honors

Students who have demonstrated exceptional academic performance in baccalaureate degree programs will be recognized at graduation by the honors designation of cum laude, magna cum laude or summa cum laude. To earn this distinction, the student must meet the following criteria:

  1. Must have at least a 3.50 GPA on University of Arkansas coursework, computed at graduation
  2. Must successfully complete the Engineering Honors Program, which includes a minimum of 12 hours of Honors courses (at least 6 of these hours in engineering), an undergraduate research/design experience and thesis, and any additional departmental requirements
  3. Research and thesis material shall be evaluated by each department
  4. For the student to earn the designation cum laude, the student must achieve a GPA of 3.50 or higher
  5. For the student to earn the designation magna cum laude, the student must achieve a GPA of 3.75 or higher
  6. For the student to earn the designation summa cum laude, the student must achieve a GPA of 3.90 or higher.

The criteria may be evaluated and changed periodically by the College of Engineering.

Requirements to Graduate with Distinction

Students who have not completed the Engineering Honors Program but have demonstrated excellent academic performance in baccalaureate degree programs will be recognized at graduation by the designation of “with distinction,” “with high distinction,” or “with highest distinction.” To earn these designations, the student must meet the following criteria on his or her University of Arkansas course work

  1. For the student to earn the designation “with distinction,” the student must achieve a GPA of 3.60 or higher
  2. For the student to earn the designation “with high distinction,” the student must achieve a GPA of 3.75 or higher
  3. For the student to earn the designation “with highest distinction,” the student must achieve a GPA of 3.90 or higher.

The criteria may be evaluated and changed periodically by the College of Engineering.