Honors Courses

The University Honors Program offers its students several enhanced curricular options.

From the Honors First-Year Inquiry courses, Interdisciplinary Seminars, and Dialogues of Civilizations, to Honors sections of courses offered by Northeastern departments, all of these courses offer rigorous and intriguing learning experiences, and are designed to complement the core curricula that students’ select as their majors and minors.

All first-year University Honors students begin their curricular journey with the 1-credit Honors Discovery course. Taught in a small sections, Honors Discovery empowers students to define their aspirations and goals and chart an initial pathway towards achieving those goals. Students learn about the the unique resources the University Honors Program provides, such as personalized advising, awards for undergraduate research and creative endeavors, and support for global experiences. Further, Honors Discovery introduces freshmen to life as an Honors student at Northeastern University within the city of Boston, while fostering a sense of belonging to the vibrant Honors community.

The Honors First-Year Inquiry Series feature a variety of intriguing courses in which Honors students explore issues and engage in experiential learning with a small group of their peers and a talented faculty member. A new menu of Inquiry courses is presented each semester. Recent topics have included cryptocurrency; creating social impact through entrepreneurship; and gastronomic delights (the chemistry of food and cooking). Most of these 4-credit courses satisfy one or more NUpath requirements. Enrollments are capped at 19 first-year Honors students.

First-Year students are strongly encouraged to take one or two of these courses, as eligibility only extends through the first year of study.

Explore Current First-Year Inquiry Courses

Previous course listings are archived here.

Honors Interdisciplinary Seminars are unique courses that enable upperclass Honors student to explore diverse contemporary issues or themes through an interdisciplinary lens. A different array of Seminars is presented each semester. Topics of recent Seminars have ranged from the use of neuroscience to understand healthy lifestyles in childhood and adolescence, the ethics of modern philanthropy, the history of modern terrorism, to the historical and contemporary consequences of trade wars. Each Honors Interdisciplinary Seminar is a 4-credit course, with enrollment capped at 19 Honors students in their second year of study or above. Many Interdisciplinary Seminars are approved as meeting one or more NUpath requirements.

Honors students must complete one Honors Interdisciplinary Seminar to earn University Honors Program Distinction.

Explore Current Interdisciplinary Seminars

Previous course listings are archived here.

Numerous college departments offer Honors sections of their courses, including Mathematics, English, Political Science, and Engineering, to name a few. These Honors courses carry the same departmental prefix and course number as non-Honors courses, but are designated as Honors in the Registrar’s course registry. These classes have a range of distinctive profiles relative to other departmental courses – for example, they may address the subject matter in greater depth, add experiential learning components, and offer a small class experience. Thus, Honors sections of departmental courses enable students to delve more deeply into an area of study along with like-minded peers, while facilitating their completion of both Major degree and Honors requirements.

Explore Departmental Honors Courses

Global learning holds a place of importance at the University Honors Program. Our students live in an increasingly globalized world, demanding the cultivation of a global mindset and intercultural competencies required for collaborating across borders and cultures. Each summer, Northeastern offers 75+ Dialogues of Civilization— 4- to 6-week programs (8 credit hours) that are designed and led by Northeastern faculty to enable students’ exploration of complex issues in the nations in which these issues are most relevant. Whether studying restorative justice in Ireland or debating human rights on the European Continent, Honors students participate in global experiences that challenges them to apply their learning in both international and domestic contexts.

The University Honors Program generally offers two Honors Dialogues of Civilizations each summer, expressly for Honors students. Successful completion of an Honors Dialogue qualifies for credit (toward the requirement of 6 Honors courses) as an Honors Interdisciplinary Seminar as well as for having completed a global experience.

Honors students are free to apply to any Dialogue of their choice and will earn Honors credit (toward the requirement of 6 Honors courses) for having completed a global experience.

Explore Dialogues of Civilizations

With the flexibility afforded by the University Honors Program, Honors students have the option of working with a faculty mentor to create their own credit-bearing learning experiences, which could encompass scholarly research, creative endeavors, entrepreneurship, service, and more. Students who have identified a faculty mentor may contact Associate Director Justin Silvestri to set up an appointment to discuss the potential learning experience and next steps.