What is an Honors Education?

The National Collegiate Honors Council defines Honors Education as "characterized by in-class and extracurricular activities that are measurably broader, deeper, or more complex than comparable learning experiences typically found at institutions of higher education. Honors experiences include a distinctive learner-directed environment and philosophy, provide opportunities that are appropriately tailored to fit the institution's culture and mission, and frequently occur within a close community of students and faculty."

Renee Crown University Honors Faculty and Instructors

The Renee Crown University Honors Program provides motivated students access to a rigorous academic experience at Syracuse University. Honors-affiliated faculty and instructors deliver this meaningful work and include many of the most distinguished teacher/scholars in the University.

Our Honors Curriculum Model

The Honors Program offers unique HNR courses, and Honors sections of some departmental courses. Classes are limited to 20 or fewer students, and emphasize active participation, critical analysis, and independent judgment. They typically engage material more quickly, broadly, and deeply than standard undergraduate courses. Among the traits Honors teaching encourages are:

  • Intellectual and creative risk-taking
  • A passion for sustained inquiry
  • A facility for serious conversation
  • Approaching subjects in fresh and innovative ways
  • Critique of received wisdom – including the instructor’s
  • Wide-ranging curiosity
  • Growth in the student’s self-understanding
  • Sophisticated methodological reflection
  • Transformations – large and small – in how students perceive and interact with academic and professional disciplines and with the world
  • An awareness and appreciation of the connectedness of ostensibly disparate domains.

We encourage Honors instructors to create unique activities that deepen students’ engagement with the subject, including trips to relevant historical, natural, or cultural sites. We have a modest budget to support such initiatives.