Honors Program

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Philosophy & Values

The Whitworth Honors Program is rooted in the following principles that shape the program and reflect Whitworth's core values:

  • Academic Excellence: Requirements for credit granted in honors program learning experiences will exceed the academic expectations of most Whitworth courses.
  • Active and Collaborative Learning: Learning experiences are characterized by joint intellectual effort among students, or between students and faculty in pursuit of deeper knowledge and understanding. Learning experiences in the honors curriculum are designed to require active participation and a high degree of self-direction from students.
  • Christian Mission: The honors program includes experiences with a faith-learning integration component.
  • Community: Registration for honors program offerings is elective and open to all Whitworth students. When space is limited, priority will be given to honors students, assuming timely registration.
  • Educational breadth: Honors graduates must complete academic enrichment experiences across the curriculum (not just in proximity to their major).
  • Preparation for Vocation: Honors experiences are designed to provide a high level of preparation for post-baccalaureate educational and/or career opportunities.
  • The primary aim of the program is to provide academic benefits by deepening student engagement, defined as learning that adds "depth, complexity, and novelty."
  1. Depth is referred to as the level of mastery and understanding of the material presented. Students in the honors program will study course content more extensively or in greater depth. This leads toward greater insight by the student's discovery of detail, patterns and trends.
  2. Complexity is the thought and processing involved in an activity. Dealing with complexity helps students to understand concepts at a higher level and to see the interrelationship of concepts.
  3. Novelty refers to a unique personal experience for the student. He or she may study something that is not a part of the regular curriculum but that may be of interest to him or her. Self-directed study leads toward heightened individuality and expansion of personal belief systems.

    A secondary aim of the program is to provide students a range of experiences to enhance their preparation for post-baccalaureate study and vocations.