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Hutton Honors College

 — Indiana University

Contact:
Joshua Brown
Associate Professor of Psychology
Psychology, Room 336
855-9282
jwmbrown@indiana.edu

1. How is my honors degree program administered? Is there a specific person who acts as coordinator? Is there a faculty committee?

An application for admission to the Cognitive Science honors program is required and can be downloaded from the Cognitive Science Web page, or by contacting the Undergraduate Academic Advisor, Izabela Z. Kenney, by e-mail: cogadv@indiana.edu or by phone: 812-856-0052. The advisor can also provide additional guidance. Then an appointment should be made with the director of undergraduate studies in Cognitive Science for application submission and approval. The honors thesis must be certified by a committee of at least three faculty members. The committee coordinator and at least one other member must be Cognitive Science Program faculty.

2. What are the requirements for admission into your honors program? How are students recruited for your program? May students recommend themselves?

For admission into the honors program, the department requires a minimum GPA of 3.3, and a minimum 3.0 College GPA and a strong interest in a specific area of study. Students should start thinking well in advance about their research field(s), their honors research idea(s), and they should identify faculty members they want to work with on their thesis project. Students must make a formal request to the director of undergraduate studies in order to be considered for departmental honors. In some cases students can approach faculty with an idea for a thesis, or they can be asked to participate in honors research by their professors.

3. How does a student graduate with honors from your department?

Students need to complete most of the major before undertaking an honors thesis, but should begin planning for the thesis one year in advance (i.e. at the start of their junior year, preferably by working with a cognitive science faculty member on a research project that will ultimately lead to the student's own honors project). Students must enroll in at least three credit hours of COGS-Q 499, Honors Research Project in Cognitive and Information Sciences. This may be repeated for a maximum of 12 credit hours. Students who wish to combine honors projects in cognitive science and another program may apply to both areas, and every attempt will be made to accomodate such a plan.

4. What is the nature of the senior project and what are the requirements for completing it?

The honors thesis consists of an independent research project that is organized, developed, and undertaken by the student. The honors thesis must be certified by a committee of at least three faculty members, of whom the committee director and at least one other member must be Cognitive Science Program faculty. A presentation of the research results in both written and oral formats is required. These submissions must be made no later than one week prior to the student's intended graduation date.

5. Are there departmental resources available to support internships or research projects related to the senior project?

Most projects are supported through the sponsoring laboratory. Some students may be eligible for funds through an Undergraduate Research Scholarship or an Honors College award. Student may be eligible for support through an Undergraduate Research Scholarship or an Honors College award. Students may also be eligible for support through individual faculty grants. For more information about the Cognitive Science Program's Undergraduate Summer Research Scholarship program, please visit: http://www.cogs.indiana.edu/academic/scholar.html.

6. How might the work required for an honors degree be particularly beneficial in future endeavors?

Students who participate in the program gain research skills, in-depth knowledge of a particular cognitive science area, and close contact with individual faculty members. Completion of an independent project and an honors thesis prepares students for study beyond the undergraduate level, allowing them to transform their research interests into focused investigation, original project development, and coherent presentation of research results. Successful participation in the departmental honors program also communicates student commitment and motivation to graduate admissions committees.