As your capstone experience in the Honors College, the senior honors thesis/creative project lets you work in-depth, one-on-one with a professor of your choice on a topic that’s meaningful to you.
This individualized final requirement, normally completed in the seventh or eighth semester, allows you to integrate your own undergraduate experience. The project or thesis is usually—but not always—within your major or minor, and the form it takes depends upon your abilities and interests. The Honors College does not restrict the field or endeavor that you may work on for your senior honors project or thesis. If your major requires a senior capstone project, you may use that product for your honors requirement with minor tweaking; but you may also do something quite different.
When you approach your senior year, it’s likely that you’ll be ready, even eager, to undertake a rigorous project on a topic or in a field that you have chosen. You might do this by investigating a significant topic and developing a project that demonstrates the results and implications of your research.
The senior project frequently involves a written thesis, but many varieties are possible. In certain areas—such as telecommunications, creative writing, art, urban planning, or music—you may wish to compose a group of short stories, mount an exhibition, produce and direct a video, or plan a recital and perform in it. Before you can register for your honors senior project or thesis (HONRS 499), you must review your plans with the dean or associate dean and submit a signed, approved thesis proposal. Your DAPR will remind you that you need to make a thesis appointment; you may turn in your proposal at that time or shortly thereafter.
Whatever type of project you choose, keep in mind that this capstone experience represents final proof of your worthiness to be a Ball State Honors College graduate. The project also frequently becomes the centerpiece for your application for awards, scholarships, or graduate or professional study.
This abbreviated Web guide introduces and explains the requirements of the senior honors thesis/creative project and provides a list of common questions and answers. It also indicates the range of possibilities open to you by offering examples of past theses and projects completed by recent honors students.
A complete hard-copy guide is available in the Honors College office in The Ball Honors House.
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