University Honors

Honors Diplomas

A student may choose from six distinct diploma options in University Honors: Commonwealth Scholar, Scholar in Health Studies, Honors Scholar, Honors Global Scholar, in Honors, Honors Baccalaureate.

Why, you may ask, are there six options to Honors study at Virginia Tech? First, University Honors believes that no two honors students are the same, that their path toward Honors is unique. Because of this, there needs to be flexibility along that path. Second, as a comprehensive university, Virginia Tech offers a number of majors, minors, concentrations, and other opportunities—each with its own particular structure. Some majors require extraordinary credit hours and others are more flexible. Third, University Honors admits students both as beginning students and as transfer students. Thus, six options provide increased opportunity for students to select a program tailored to their needs.

University Honors allows additional flexibility for the student to meet Honors requirements so long as the student is seeking more rigor rather than less.

The Honors staff is not responsible for your completion of an Honors diploma—you are. University Honors encourages you to take control of your own education and create an environment that makes you distinct and that allows you to follow your own sense of education. Our responsibilities are to advise and, as representatives of the university, to ensure that students awarded Honors diplomas have earned the right to receive such a distinction.


The following requirements apply to all Honors diplomas:

  • All students must have a minimum final grade point average of at least a 3.50 in order to receive an Honors diploma. No exceptions can be made to this requirement.
  • All courses for the diploma must be A/F unless there is not an A/F option. Students must earn a “B” or better in a course for it to count for the Honors diploma.
  • No more than six (6) credits from a single way to earn Honors credit will count towards an Honors diploma
  • Credits must come from at least two (2) of the four categories (see Earning Honors Credit).

Undergraduate Research

Two degrees, in Honors and Honors Baccalaureate, specifically require Honors Undergraduate Research that culminates in a thesis. Students work with faculty to explore their area of expertise and ask the question of why.