Honors Seminars

Invitation to Inquiry and Capstone

The Honors Program seminars are open to honors students only and are required for successful completion of the program. Both seminars are exciting, challenging, team-taught courses that allow students to focus on academic research but from different perspectives.

Honors Invitation to Inquiry Seminar

HON 201_H Honors Invitation to Inquiry Seminar reviews the academic research process with an emphasis on thinking critically about scholarly research. Students pursue independent research projects of their choosing and simultaneously:

  • examine the stages in the research process from an interdisciplinary approach;
  • identify assumptions that students, the Honors Program, and academia in general make about research; and
  • test those assumptions.

Students continue developing ePortfolios as a way to reflect on their learning during the seminar. Guest speakers provide insights into topics such as

  • what constitutes valid evidence in different disciplines;
  • research projects, conferences, and opportunities at Oregon universities; and
  • the role of academic research in the history of Western Imperialism.

The seminar culminates in a two-hour roundtable discussion in which students discuss the assumptions tested and the conclusions reached, using their own research projects as evidence to support their claims. HON 201_H is offered each winter and has a prerequisite of a B or higher in WR 121.

Honors Capstone Seminar

HON 202_H Honors Capstone Seminar builds on the skills developed in the Inquiry seminar. Students undertake group research projects voted on by the class. To answer the research question, students:

  • determine reliable sources, at least one of which must be direct contact using interviews or surveys;
  • address and refute counterarguments; and
  • determine the audience for their work and the best format for presenting your findings.

At the end of the term, the class organizes a symposium in which students present their findings to the relevant audience. The format of the symposium changes each year based on the projects being presented but usually includes some of the following elements:

  • student panel presentations;
  • panel interviews with experts in the relevant field(s);
  • keynote address;
  • poster displays;
  • PowerPoint presentations; and
  • resource table.

The capstone research projects often address issues important to the Lane, Eugene/Springfield, and Oregon communities. HON 202_H is offered each spring and has a prerequisite of a passing grade in HON 201_H.