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Hutton Honors College

 — Indiana University

Barbara Cherry
Honors Advisor
Radio/TV Building 313

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

Barbara Cherry coordinates the honors program in telecommunications and serves as advisor to honors students.

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

Students who have declared telecommunications as a major and have a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or above are eligible for admission to the honors program. At least twice per year the honors advisor and the academic advisor check the list of newly declared majors to identify qualified students. These students are sent a letter from the honors advisor inviting them to make an appointment to discuss the program. Students who may not be eligible for admission initially but later become eligible (by raising their GPAs to 3.3 or above) may be nominated for admission by department faculty or may recommend themselves for admission by contacting the department honors advisor.

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

Standards for graduating with honors include 12 hours of honors work, a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.3, a GPA in telecommunication of 3.5 or better, and successful completion of a senior project.

4. What courses do students take as juniors and before in order to prepare for working on the senior project? How are these honors seminars and courses typically conducted? What are the usual requirements in such courses?

Upper division topical seminars are offered for honors students during their sophomore and junior years. Honors students are required to take at least two of these seminars. Courses offered to honors students will be taught as seminars with an emphasis on class discussion and extensive writing. The research methods courses are designed to provide the student with the necessary skills to conduct an independent research project in his or her area of interest.

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

At present there are no departmental funds earmarked specifically for honors students. However, two cash awards are given to majors on the basis of academic achievement. Applications for these awards are usually available in March. Awards are presented in April.

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

Students work with an individual faculty member in completing their senior projects. These may take a variety of forms. For example, students may choose to pursue creative work by writing a script. They may also take more traditional research approaches doing historical, critical, legal or social science research. The specific criteria for each project are determined in conjunction with the individual faculty member selected by the student.

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

Certainly graduate work in telecommunications, law, or business is the most common path followed by our honors students. However, given the flexibility of the program, any student with a special interest has a distinct advantage whether that interest lies in the creative areas of writing or production or in a specialized research area such as audience analysis. Because honors students are permitted early access to advanced courses and increased opportunity for independent work with faculty, their programs are accelerated and thus afford more time for focused, advanced work. Thus, honors students entering any aspect of the telecommunications industry have had the opportunity to advance further than those students in the traditional major.

8. What are the advantages for students who pursue the honors degree compared to a regular degree in your area?

The main advantages are smaller classes, greater access to faculty, more opportunities to pursue individual interests and greater flexibility in program planning.

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