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HonorsSPEAK!: What is the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College?

Students interested in learning more about the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College are invited to hear from dedicated Honors Student Bethany Leander as she shares her experience as an Honors student and describes how she earns her Honors hours. 


Student Handbook Coming Soon 

Thank you for your interest in the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College at Sam Houston State University.

The Honors College was established in 1987, and has grown ever larger in size and distinction. The college has doubled in numbers just over the past five years, echoing the fairly remarkable growth here at Sam.

Added numbers have not diminished the quality of the program, however. We place precisely as much emphasis on quality as we did in 1987, but the growth in quality programs at Sam (which is underscored by a strong emphasis on teaching and scholarly excellence in our faculty, as well as the growing regional and national reputation of several of our programs) has increased the number of top students attracted to our University. The Elliott T. Bowers Honors College is proud to be the beneficiary of this leap forward in excellence.

If you are an incoming freshman, a transfer student, or a current SHSU student who has an excellent academic record and a desire to be in a program that will both challenge you and embrace your own excellence, the Honors College is the place for you!

The Honors Student

The Honors student earns Honors credit in a variety of specially designated classes, and works toward the distinction of graduating 'With Honors' or 'With Highest Honors.' To qualify for graduation with honors, a student must have been a participant in the Honors College and have completed 24 hours of honors class credit, including participation in two interdisciplinary honors seminars. To qualify for graduation 'With Highest Honors' a student must, in addition, complete a senior thesis in an approved discipline under the direction of a faculty member of his/her choice. The student will receive 6 credit hours of departmental course credit when completing the senior thesis. Once accepted into the Honors College, a student must maintain a 3.25 overall SHSU GPA in order to continue participation in the Honors College. 

Important Deadlines

  • Applications for fall admittance for first-time freshmen are due by May 31st
  • Applications for fall admittance for current and transfer students are due by May 31st
  • Applications for spring admittance are due by November 30th

Students may submit applications to the Honors College at any time throughout the year. Most late applications with all supporting documents will be considered automatically for the following semester. Students are encouraged to apply early to take advantage of advanced registration privileges each fall and spring semester.

Apply Online

Interested in visiting us? View the opportunities listed below.

Honors College Open House

The Elliott T. Bowers Honors College Open House is a campus event that provides prospective students and their parents the opportunity to learn more about Honors at Sam Houston State University. Presentations and informal conversations with Honors faculty, academic advisors, and Honors College Student Ambassadors will include information on the following topics:

  • Applying to the Honors College
  • Academic Scholarships
  • Honors Seminars
  • Honors Student Life
  • Undergraduate Research Opportunities
  • Co-Curricular Honors Experiences
  • Honors Residence Life Opportunities

The Honors College Open House is scheduled during Saturdays at SAM, the SHSU college preview day:

Saturday, March 28, 2020


Olson Auditorium, Academic Building IV

For additional information, contact the Honors College at honors@shsu.edu or 936-294-1477.

For Saturdays at SAM information, visit VISITOR SERVICES.

One-on-One Visit with the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College Staff

Prospective students and their families are more than welcome to schedule an individual visit with the Honors College Deans. A meeting with our OFFICE STAFF can provide you with more insight into the admission process and with the opportunity to learn more about the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College. Our student assistants are well-rounded and can provide information about the Honors College, campus life, and much more. 

To visit, it is preferable to make an appointment to ensure availability. Appointments are available Monday through Friday, from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, year round with the exception of campus holidays. If you want to schedule an appointment, contact the Honors College Office by email at honors@shsu.edu.

While on campus, you may also want to attend a SHSU Campus Tour and/or on-campus housing tour. For more information on tours, visit VISITOR SERVICES.

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The Elliott T. Bowers Honors College

Academic Building IV Suite 202 | Box 2479 | Huntsville, Texas 77341-2479

Phone: (936) 294.1477 | Email: honors@shsu.edu

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