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University Honors Program

Mission Statement

The mission of the Dallas Baptist University Honors Program is to fulfill the Dallas Baptist University Mission Statement by providing transforming “Christ-centered quality higher education” for students who are intellectually gifted who desire enriched academic experiences equipping them to be servant leaders in their respective callings.

Goals of the Honors Program

  1. To provide a superior education grounded in the biblical worldview, moral formation, and Christian tradition.

  2. To promote a high level of independent learning, contextual insight, and critical thinking through study, research, and the exchange of ideas.

  3. To provide a challenging interdisciplinary experience that amplifies and complements the liberal arts mission of DBU and that stimulates curiosity, imagination, integrity, and faith.

  4. To assist students in building friendships and community by participation in enrichment activities outside the classroom setting.

  5. To encourage students to pursue leadership roles within the campus community as preparation to be outstanding future contributors to the church, society, and the world.

  6. To promote Honors student-faculty mentor relationships that foster interactive learning.

  7. To help students cultivate a desire for God's truth, goodness, and beauty as expressed in the creation and in human culture.


For incoming freshmen, a minimum SAT score of 1150 (old format), 1220 (new format), or an ACT score of 25 and two high school faculty recommendations are required for admission to the Honors Program. For returning students to DBU, a 3.5 overall GPA at DBU and two faculty recommendations are required for admission to the program. Transfer students must have at least twelve hours of credit at DBU with a minimum DBU GPA of 3.5 and two faculty recommendations for full admission to the program. All applicants must also submit a 250-to-500-word letter of interest. Transfer students who are members of an academic organization such as Phi Beta Kappa at their previous institution may apply for first-semester acceptance. No student with more than 70 hours may be admitted to the Honors Program.


To be recognized as a University Honors Program graduate at DBU, a student must have successfully completed 24 hours in honors classes, including 12 hours in Perspectives courses. Honors Perspectives courses (HNRS 2301HR, HNRS 2302HR, HNRS 3301HR, HNRS 3302HR, HNRS 3303HR, HNRS 3304HR, HNRS 3313HR, HNRS 4303HR) fulfill the general education course requirements for History and/or English in all majors and are equivalent to HIST 1301, HIST 1302, HIST 2301, HIST 2302, ENGL 2301, or ENGL 2302.

University Honors Program students may take no more than six honors hours per semester, without the UHP Director’s approval. Honors students are encouraged to take Honors Developing the Christian Mind (DCM 2301HR) in the spring.

All students must also regularly enroll in Honors Enrichment courses and complete an Honors Portfolio (HNRS 4001HR) before completing the senior thesis or project. Freshmen register for HNRS 1001 both Fall and Spring; sophomores register for HNRS 2001HR (Fall) and HNRS 2002HR (Spring); juniors register for HNRS 3001HR (Fall) and HNRS 3002HR (Spring); and seniors register for HNRS 4001HR during the senior year (offered Fall, Spring, and Summer).

The Honors Thesis or senior project is typically taken in the senior year under a professor in the student’s major and on a topic appropriate for their major. Students are required to complete a minimum of 3 credit hours of Honors Thesis or senior project.  Most honors students, after locating a supervisor within the student’s major, will first enroll in HNRS 4180HR in order to conduct initial research, and then the following semester enroll in HNRS 4280HR in order to complete and defend the honors thesis (if necessary, students may receive approval to enroll in HNRS 4380HR). Education students can complete the senior project while enrolled in EDUC 4608. Music students can complete the senior project by enrolling with approval in an Independent Study honors section of MUSI 4189 plus 2 additional credit hours of an Independent Study honors section of Applied Music. Business students can complete the senior project by enrolling with approval in an Independent Study honors section of MANA 4320.

Probation and Suspension

Students must maintain a 3.2 grade point average in order to remain in the program. To be recognized as "University Honors" at graduation, a student must have a 3.5 average and have completed 24 hours of designated honors courses, including a senior thesis or project. 

If a student’s average falls below 3.2, he or she will be placed on probation and be allowed two semesters to bring his or her grade point average back to a minimum 3.2 in order to take honors courses. If the student’s grade point average stays below 3.2 for two semesters, the student will be suspended from the University Honors Program. A student seeking readmission to the University Honors Program may reapply once after suspension.

Transfer Credit

Students may transfer into the University Honors Program up to twelve hours of honors credit from another college or university. Each course is subject to review by the Director and a consulting honors faculty member. Criteria for acceptance is determined by equivalency to DBU's own honors courses in terms of both coverage and rigor. Perspectives courses (HNRS 2301, 2302, 3301, 3302, 3303, 3304, 3313, 4303), the honors-level Developing a Christian Mind course (DCM 2301 HR), and the senior thesis or project must be taken at Dallas Baptist to be named a University Honors student at graduation.

Applicants should note that the transfer equivalency report prepared by the Registrar and the review process conducted by the University Honors Program do not constitute the same process. Courses that are accepted by the University in partial fulfillment of a student's degree plan may or may not be also accepted by the University Honors office as honors-level credit in the program.


The Honors Program curriculum supplements and complements the traditional curriculum of Dallas Baptist University. Components of the curriculum include honors sections of general studies classes, an honors section of the Developing a Christian Mind course, the Perspectives Honors core curriculum, honors sections of upper-level discipline specific courses, Independent Study courses, and a Senior Thesis or Project. The online Schedule of Classes provides current course listings.

Special Study

Students interested in taking a 3000-level or 4000-level course for honors credit should contact the UHP director, who together with the student, will approach the professor with a proposal for attaching honors-level study for the course. This can be done a maximum of four times. Some restrictions do apply. Special study can be an excellent way to help prepare for the student’s senior thesis or project.


Recognition of Honors Program graduates includes an Honors Program notation on the transcript and diploma, as well as special recognition at graduation.

Additionally, each year the Honors faculty will select an eligible student to receive Honors Student of the Year at the University Honors Banquet and be recognized at the annual Honors Day program.


Dallas Baptist University believes in helping students afford a quality, Christ-centered education. A wide-range of programs is available, including academic, merit-based scholarships and financial aid for qualified students. Honors students are encouraged to explore all avenues for which they could qualify for additional assistance. The Office of Financial Aid will assist you in determining your eligibility for Federal, State, and other aid programs.

Taking an Honors Course without Acceptance into the Program

Incoming freshmen with a minimum SAT score of 1060 or an ACT score of 24 are eligible to take an honors course without acceptance into the University Honors Program. Likewise, returning or transfer students with a GPA of 3.2 are eligible. There are several reasons to consider doing so:

  1. It affords an opportunity to gain important skills in a student's major or area of interest.

  2. It appears on the college transcript as an honors-level course.

  3. Class size is smaller than DBU’s already low professor-student ratio, which affords more personal attention.

  4. It can help the student make a more informed decision if considering the University Honors Program.

 Students seeking to do so should apply for program director approval through their academic advisor.