The College of Arts and Architecture

Schreyer Honors College

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The Schreyer Honors College provides students of superior academic ability an opportunity to enrich their educations through honors-level course work and independent study.  To provide stimulating intellectual experiences outside the classroom, the program also sponsors regular seminars, field trips, social events, and other extracurricular activities.  Atherton and Simmons Halls have been designated to provide a special on-campus living environment for Schreyer Scholars.

Students enrolled in the Schreyer Honors College are afforded several specific privileges:  1) admission to honors and graduate-level courses, 2) flexibility in fulfilling certain degree requirements, 3) registration priority for many courses, 4) graduate/faculty borrowing privileges at the University Libraries, and 5) the opportunity to pursue simultaneous undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Participants in the program must:  1) maintain a 3.33 (B+) G.P.A. each semester; 2) complete at least 3 honors courses each academic year (fall/spring/summer), for a minimum of 7 honors credits, in each of the first two years, and a minimum of 14 honors credits during the remainder of enrollment; and 3) complete an honors thesis or project.  Students successfully completing the program will be awarded an honors diploma.

Participation in the Schreyer Honors College is by invitation.  Entering students who are not admitted to the program may subsequently petition in the fourth semester for junior-gate admission if their cumulative and major grade-point averages are 3.7 or above.  All fourth-semester music majors who meet the GPA requirements will be notified of their eligibility by the eighth week of the semester.  Students in this group who wish to apply should submit a petition by the tenth week of the semester to the chair of the Undergraduate Committee, following the directions in the letter of notification.  The committee, after soliciting input from the student’s academic adviser and one other faculty referee chosen by the student, will forward successful petitions to one of the School of Music’s honors advisers, who will submit it to the Honors College.

For further information about the honors college, please contact Dr. Clements (music education) or Dr. Ballora (all other music degree programs).  You may also visit the honors college web site at www.shc.psu.edu.


HONORS THESIS PROCEDURES FOR MUSIC STUDENTS

Preparation of your honor thesis could be one of the most rewarding experiences of your undergraduate study.  On the other hand, if approached in a hurried and unorganized fashion, it could be one of your least rewarding experiences.  The following guidelines were prepared to assist you with the successful preparation of your thesis.  Failure to comply with these guidelines will delay your intended graduation date.

1. In the fifth semester (normally fall of the junior year), enroll in MUSIC 494H Research Topics.

2. Select a thesis adviser during your fifth semester (normally fall of the junior year) and identify a thesis topic.


3. We encourage students to satisfy four more honors credits by enrolling twice in MUSIC 494 Research Topics and getting these credits approved as Honors Research by submitting the online Honors Independent Study or Research form. Music Education students should register for MUSIC 494 in the spring of their junior year (sixth semester) and the fall of their senior year (seventh semester). Note, however, that Honors Research credits cannot be approved until a thesis topic has been proposed and approved.

 4. Complete a proposal and file a thesis proposal form with The Schreyer Honors College Office during the sixth semester (normally spring of the junior year). Check with the Honors College for the exact due date.

5. Once your topic has been approved, set up regular meeting times with your thesis adviser. You should expect to work through several drafts of your thesis over the course of your last three semesters of study.

 6. Deliver a draft of your complete thesis to your School of Music honors adviser and all readers by the end of the fifth week of your last semester in residence prior to graduation.
 

 7. Make a final draft submission to your School of Music honors adviser and the director of the School of Music no later than three weeks prior to the Schreyer submission deadline during your last semester in residence prior to graduation.

Music education majors should have a complete draft of the thesis to the thesis advisor and second reader prior to student teaching if the student intends to graduate the semester of student teaching. If not, the student needs to be prepared to extend graduation for a semester. 

8. Submit all final materials to the Honors College Office by their required deadline.

For non-Music majors who wish to write an honors thesis in Music:

We encourage non-Music majors to do honors work in Music, provided the work is carefully planned in advance and developed with a thesis adviser.

The honors adviser in Music must approve the proposal and be one of the readers for the thesis.

Students should enroll in MUSIC 494H Research Topics in their fifth semester (normally the fall of their junior year).

Under some circumstances, students may be approved to pursue Music honors after their fifth semester. They should enroll in MUSIC 494H at their earliest opportunity.

Students may wish to satisfy four more honors credits by enrolling twice in MUSIC 494 Research Topics and getting these credits approved as Honors Research by submitting the online Honors Independent Study or Research form. Music Education students should register for MUSIC 494 in the spring of their junior year (sixth semester) and the fall of their senior year (seventh semester). Note, however, that Honors Research credits cannot be approved until a thesis topic has been proposed and approved.

Other courses will be chosen in consultation with an adviser, and will depend on the topic. Courses in music theory, history, or performance may be appropriate, depending on the subject area. Attending concert events may also be expected of non-Music majors. Students are encouraged to investigate pursuing one of the available minors in Music.

A project-based thesis can be pursued, such as a lecture recital, or a recital with extensive program notes. Bear in mind that a written component is an important part of a project-based thesis. While it may not be as lengthy as a thesis in a research area, it should demonstrate maturity and qualifications for scholarly work in the area.