In order to graduate with Honors students must be in residence for eight semesters (students can still opt for Study Abroad programs, etc., because these programs require registration as a Cornell student). Transfer students are eligible for the Honors Program as long as they remain in residence for all semesters after they transfer. Students must achieve a GPA of at least 3.3 to be eligible for the Honors Program, and the 3.3 GPA minimum must be maintained after being admitted into the Honors Program. Students whose GPA drops below 3.3 will be dropped from the Honors Program (these students can register for special studies in order to complete their research).
Students should apply for acceptance into the D+EA Honors Program during the first semester of their junior year. Students must complete a D+EA Honors Program Application Form. The form must include an abstract on the proposed Honors Thesis (described later in this document) and must be signed by the Committee Chair and the D+EA "At-Large" Honors Representative before submitting the application to the department. Once completed, the student will return the form to the D+EA Academic Programs Coordinator. Students will be notified within two months of submitting the D+EA Honors Program Application whether or not they have been accepted into the program.
The following is a description of the faculty and staff associated with the honors thesis:
- Committee Chair - This person must be a faculty member (professorial rank) in D+EA who works with the student on a commonly agreed topic of study for their thesis.
- External Examiner (also referred to as Reader) - This person must be an outside faculty member with whom student will work with during their honors thesis. The external examiner should be a faculty from a non D+EA department. A D+EA faculty member with expertise in a different concentration may be accepted if recommended by the chair. The student will work with their committee chair to select an external examiner.
- D+EA "At-Large" Honors Representative - This person is a pre-selected D+EA faculty member whose role is to provide comparability of standards across student theses at the Department. The current "At-Large" Honors Representative for D+EA is Dr. Rana Zadeh.
- Academic Programs Coordinator - This person is a designated staff member in the department who provides academic support to students. The Academic Programs Coordinator for D+EA is Sienna Torbitt.
The major component of the Honors Program is the Honors Thesis. The student's original research must be written up in a formal scientific manner, or a manner appropriate to the major, following the advice of the D+EA Faculty Committee Chair. If the topic requires approval by the University Committee on Human Subjects, this must be obtained prior to commencing the research.
DEA 4990 - Senior Honors Thesis is the official course title for the Honors Program research. Students must register (for six credits) in DEA 4990 - Senior Honors Thesis starting in the Fall (or first) semester of their Senior year, by adding the course officially through the Registrar's Office. (see timeline for details). Research will be supervised by the Honors Thesis Committee Members. The student will write their thesis under the direct supervision of the Committee Chair. The actual submission date and defense will be agreed by the Committee Chair and the External Examiner and planned ahead by the student in collaboration with the Committee Chair and the External Examiner. The Committee Chair and the External Examiner must receive the thesis at least one week prior to the defense, and either committee member may request revisions, which must be incorporated into the final version of the written thesis that is due by the last day of classes. The final research will be graded based on the thesis and the oral thesis defense given by the student to their Committee Chair and the External Examiner.
If you have additional questions, please contact Rana Zadeh, D+EA's "At-Large" Honors Program Representative.
In order to graduate with Honors, students must be in residence for eight semesters (students can still opt for Study Abroad, because these programs require registration as a Cornell student). Transfer students are eligible for the Honors Program as long as they remain in residence for all semesters after they transfer. Students must achieve and maintain a GPA of at least 3.4 to be eligible for the Honors Program, and the 3.4 GPA must be maintained even after being admitted into the Honors Program. Students whose GPA drops below 3.4 will be dropped from the Honors Program (though these students can register for special studies in order to complete their research).
Students should apply for acceptance into the FSAD Honors Program during the first semester of their junior year (the beginning of the second semester of junior year is the latest possible period for application and registration). Students must complete the FSAD Honors Program Application Form. To complete the form, students must identify and obtain the signature of a FSAD faculty member who consents to serve as their Academic Mentor for the duration of the Honors Program. The Academic Mentor must approve the student's proposed topic for creative scholarship/thesis. The student will be notified within two weeks of submitting the FSAD Honors Program Application whether they have been accepted into the program.
The major component of the Honors Program is the documentation of the creative scholarship/research (thesis). Each student is required to conduct original scholarship on a topic chosen by the student. Credit is given; therefore, this work is part of the student's course load each semester. During the junior year, the student usually does preliminary scholarship/research under FSAD 4010, supervised by the FSAD mentor. FSAD 4990 Honors Seminar is the official course for Honors Program creative scholarship/research. Students may register for up to 6 credits in FSAD 4990 over their last three semesters, and must take FSAD 4990 for at least the two semesters of their senior year.
The scholarship must be documented/written up in a formal manner appropriate for the specific research, or creative work that may also include studio work or exhibition. The final written document/thesis must be submitted by April 1 of the senior year. The scholarly document/thesis will be evaluated during an oral scholarly defense by the student's Honors committee, which must meet no later than April 15. This committee consists of the FSAD Honors Program Director, the FSAD academic mentor, and an additional Faculty Representative who is assigned by the FSAD Honors Program Director. The Academic Mentor and Faculty Representative may request revisions which must be incorporated into the final version of the written documentation/thesis.
- Students must complete all of the following requirements in order to successfully complete the Honors Program. For the most part these requirements are designed to aid in the research process.
- Identify and obtain the consent of an FSAD faculty member to act as Faculty Academic Mentor. This should be done when applying for the Honors Program.
- Register for FSAD 4010 junior year and conduct preliminary research under the guidance of the Academic Mentor.
- Register for FSAD 4990 for both semesters of senior year.
- Meet with the Academic Mentor at the beginning of the fall semester senior year to set out written expectations regarding progress on the scholarship/thesis during the fall semester.
- Attend four professional departmental seminars during their senior year (decided upon in conjunction with the Academic Mentor).
- Submit a complete draft of the documentation of scholarship/thesis to each member of your honors committee (FSAD Honors Program Director, and FSAD Additional Faculty Assigned by the Director) after receiving approval from the Academic Mentor by April 1.
- Schedule Oral defense of the scholarship/thesis for no later than April 15.
- Complete and present a poster of scholarship at a College of Human Ecology poster session organized to recognize undergraduate independent scholarship between April 15 and the last day of classes in the spring semester.
- The student will submit a copy of the honors scholarship/thesis to the Undergraduate Program Coordinator.
- Honors Degree
Students who successfully complete the program will graduate in Honors in FSAD, a designation that is recorded on the student’s diploma and the official Cornell University academic record.