The Honors Program in Political Science challenges you to explore politics in three ways:  first, by taking and excelling in advanced coursework; second, by engaging in original research to produce a thesis; and third, by experiencing the practical world of politics and government.  It is the most stimulating intellectual enterprise in which an undergraduate can engage, demanding dedication, creativity, and the ability to exercise independent judgment.

A summary sheet of the program can be found here.

Application Procedures and Requirements

A minimum overall grade point average of 3.5 and minimum PO major GPA of 3.5 is required for students applying for the Honors Program.

Students should complete the application in consultation with an undergraduate advisor and their faculty advisor. Students must choose a faculty advisor who is an appointed full-time faculty member in Political Science. The faculty advisor must complete the recommendation form, evaluating the student’s potential success in the project. Once all of the application forms have been submitted along with the appropriate signatures, the complete application will be considered for admittance to the program.

The deadline to submit applications for the Honors Program is May 15.

Each applicant will be notified of acceptance or rejection by email, and the appropriate course(s) will be added to the student’s schedule.


The student must satisfactorily complete PO 502 or PO399/PO599 (minimum grade of B) and enroll in two semesters of Honors Directed Study, PO 493 and PO 494 (minimum grade of B+), as part of the program. All three of these requirements can count towards a student’s BA requirements.


To graduate with Honors in the major, students must complete a thesis, which will be presented and defended to a committee of three faculty members. The committee will consider both the thesis and the result of the oral examination to determine whether the student will receive distinction in the concentration. The thesis will be archived at OpenBU. Previous theses are available here:

  • The thesis must be distinct from other coursework. Academic work submitted to fulfill the requirements of undergraduate courses cannot be resubmitted as the Honors thesis.

Current HP Students

Program rules, guidelines, and community resources can be found here.