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Prospective Students


During the freshman year, honors students take two year-long interdisciplinary courses: Great Books and Ideas and Twentieth Century/Contemporary Civilization.

Great Books and Ideas (HONP 100 and HONP 101) focuses on the writing of seminal thinkers from antiquity to the modern era. Twentieth Century/Contemporary Civilization (HONP 102 and HONP 103) concentrates on profound ideas and issues of our own time.

After their freshman year, students will select and take a minimum of four more single-semester honors courses in such subjects as Science, the Creative Process, and Fractals and Infinity.  Several of these honors courses cover General Education requirements.

Throughout the undergraduate experience, the Honors Program emphasizes interdisciplinary studies in the belief that new insights and understanding are gained outside the artificial boundaries imposed by discrete subject areas. This approach creates a climate that fosters creativity and original thinking.

Required Course Details

Honors Sequence: Minimum eight courses

A. Required Honors Courses

Freshman Year:

  • Honors Seminar in Great Books and Ideas Parts I and II
    (HONP 100, HONP 101) Fulfills the C1 and C2 general education requirements in writing and literature – six semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Twentieth Century Civilization
    (HONP 102) Fulfills the K1 general education requirement in Social Science – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Contemporary Civilization (Formerly Honors Seminar in Twentieth Century Civilization Part II)
    (HONP 103)

B. Honors Electives (choose four):

  • Honors Seminar in Fractals and Infinity
    (HONP 104) Fulfills the general education requirement H, for Mathematics – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Science
    (HONP 210) Fulfills the general education requirement I, for Natural/Physical Science Lab – four semester hours
    (Students with required science courses in their majors may waive the Honors Seminar in Science)
  • Honors Seminar in Computing
    (HONP 112) Fulfills the general education requirement G, for Computer science – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Creative Process
    (HONP 201) Fulfills the general education requirement D, for Fine and Performing Arts – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Contemporary American Issues
    (HONP 202) – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Contemporary Issues in Science
    (HONP 211) – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Ways of Knowing
    (HONP 301) Fulfills the general education requirement F2 for Philosophy/Religion – three semester hours
  • Honors Seminar in Research Methods
    (HONP 302) Designed to support departmental honors work – three semester hours

Application Information

Montclair State University Honors Program students take part in an intellectually stimulating, interactive educational experience which provides them with the rich and challenging educational preparation they need to become social and professional leaders. Interested students must meet two of the following criteria to be considered for this program:

  • Rank in the top 10% of your high school class
  • Combined SAT score of at least 1250 (Critical Reading and Math)
  • Extraordinary ability in the creative arts, exceptional commitment to leadership, or other similarly unique accomplishments
  • Completion of at least two AP courses and a score of 3 or better on final AP exams.

Students who meet two or more of these criteria are invited to apply to the Honors Program on their own initiative. In addition, the Honors Program will contact some students to invite them to apply for the program.

Submit your honors program application form online.

In addition to this online form, there are two more required elements in your MSU Honors application:

  1. Send a recent term paper or analytic essay which you are especially proud of to the honors secretary, Ms. Chrystel Williams, at or to the snail mail address for the Honors Program office listed below.
  2. Have two letters of recommendation sent to the honors secretary, Ms. Chrystel Williams, at or to the snail mail address for the Honors Program listed below. (It is fine to use the same recommendation letters that you are using for your college applications.)

Honors Program Address

Honors Program – School of Nursing Room 369
Montclair State University
1 Normal Avenue
Montclair, NJ 07043

Although a personal interview is not mandatory for admission to the Honors Program, at the discretion of the Honors Program Advisory Board, an interview may be requested.


In addition to financial aid opportunities, Montclair State provides Honors students with a gallery of other benefits, including (but not limited to) these:

  • Priority registration for all courses, Honors and otherwise
  • Personalized academic advisement by the director of the Honors Program
  • Membership in the Montclair State University Honors Student Organization, with a newsletter and special extra-curricular activities
  • Collective membership in the Northeast Regional and National Collegiate Honors Councils
  • Attendance at Honors Council Conferences and Sleeping Bag Seminars, with partial expenses paid by the University


In recognition of their achievements and promise, Honors Program students are eligible for a range of scholarship opportunities, and new ones are being added all the time. Here is just a partial listing:

  • Each year, many Honors students receive Honors Program scholarships from the John and Irma Sheffman Scholarship Fund, the Mary A. Whaley Memorial Scholarship Fund, the Wilkins Foundation Scholarship Fund, the Vivian and Heinz Rosenbush Memorial Scholarship Fund, and others, in amounts ranging from $250 to $2500.
  • All students receive a book stipend for each Honors class they take.

Special Programs

Many students combine participation in the Honors Program with involvement in other pre-professional programs. For example, University students who fulfill undergraduate requirements for one of its articulated programs with the University of Medicine and Dentistry gain automatic acceptance at UMDNJ without further application or testing. There they study toward their MD or DMD degrees. Some students even participate in a combined, accelerated program that can result in the granting of medical degrees after only seven years. Many honors students will also be Montclair State University Presidential Scholars.

Others, participating simultaneously in the Honors Program and the Health Careers Program (designed for students who have been previously constrained by economic or social factors) may be granted a medical degree after eight years.

To apply for consideration for either the seven or eight-year cooperative programs with UMDNJ, simply check the appropriate box on the Montclair State University admissions application. The deadline for applying to these programs is December 15.