Ever been confused about the differences among the HONORS PROGRAM, HONORS COURSES, HONOR SOCIETIES, HONORS LIST and HONORS NIGHT? If so, this is the page for you! Click on any of the terms above or simply scroll down to learn what each means.
- HONORS PROGRAM
- HONORS COURSES
- HONOR SOCIETIES
- HONORS LIST
- HONORS NIGHT
The Honors Program is OCC’s “college within a college,” designed with intellectually curious and creative students in mind. Its main focus is to develop and expand educational opportunities for highly motivated individuals, and to improve their prospects of transfer to even the most competitive universities in the nation. Program benefits include possible participation in or attendance at academic conferences, special library privileges, guest lectures by visiting scholars, and scholarships. Those who complete the Honors Program receive transcript notation, have the privilege of wearing honors regalia at graduation and receive priority transfer consideration to select universities. In order to be admitted, students must fulfill specific admission requirements (including a minimum GPA of 3.25 and an English 100 requirement) and complete an application. Applications are accepted throughout the year: there are no dues or fees, and the only deadlines are those associated with certification for transfer. Membership requirements include completing at least one honors class within one year of enrolling in the Honors Program and meeting with an Honors Counselor at least once each semester. Completion requirements are more extensive, and include completion of at least 18 units of honors courses in three different disciplines.
To find out more about the Honors Program, see the other pages of the Program website and/or contact us.
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Orange Coast College currently offers honors courses in 16 disciplines: anthropology, art, astronomy, biology, business, English, geography, geology, history, humanities, mathematics, marine science, political science, psychology, sociology and Spanish.
Honors courses are challenging. Honors instructors enhance basic curriculum requirements of their classes by offering more intensive study than is possible in most non-honors sections. Freedom of inquiry and student discovery are stressed. Honors sections are intended to foster discussion, a mastery of content, critical thinking and analysis. Guest speakers, field trips and comprehensive research (including presentation of results) further enhance most honors sections.
Honors courses are open to all students, whether or not they are enrolled in the Honors Program itself. In addition, there are no prerequisites for honors sections other than those that apply to non-honors sections of the same courses. However, completion of or concurrent enrollment in English 100 is strongly recommended as most honors sections include an advanced writing component.
Relationship of honors courses to the Honors Program:
Honors Program members must take an honors course within a year of being admitted to the Program in order to maintain active membership. In order to complete the Program, members must complete 18 units of honors courses in at least three academic disciplines.
To find out more about honors courses, click here.
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An honor society (often designated by a Greek name) is an organization associated with high academic achievement and may also indicate a student’s interest in a specific field of study. Many honor societies have a community/campus service focus. There are chapters of six such honor societies at OCC: Phi Theta Kappa, International Honor Society of the Two-Year College (for students completing associate-level coursework in all disciplines and majors), Alpha Gamma Sigma, California Community College Honor Scholarship Society (for students completing coursework in all disciplines and majors), Mu Alpha Theta (for students completing certain coursework in mathematics), Psi Beta (for students completing coursework in psychology), the National Technology Honor Society (for students completing coursework in technology and engineering), and Phi Alpha Mu (for students completing coursework in the social and behavioral sciences). Benefits of permanent membership with the honor societies includes special scholarship opportunities, honors recognition at graduation ceremonies, and notations on student transcripts. Honor societies may enroll on the basis of invitation or voluntary application, some require a community service component, and most require the payment of dues.
Click on the left side of this page for detailed information about each of the honor societies.
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The Honors List is one of three distinctions that are automatically added to a student's transcript when that student fulfills certain unit and GPA criteria (see below) in a single semester. There are no applications to fill out or fees to pay for this recognition. These semester distinctions are NOT, however, sufficient to entitle students to the privilege of wearing honors regalia at graduation.
Dean's List Notation: The student completes 12 or more units of OCC coursework with letter grades and earns a semester GPA of 3.50-3.99
Honors List Notation: The student completes 6 - 11.9 units of OCC coursework with letter grades and earns a semester GPA of 3.75-4.0
President's List Notation: The student completes 12 or more units of OCC coursework with letter grades and earns a semester GPA of 4.0
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Honors Night is the annual presentation of scholarships and service/leadership awards to OCC continuing and transferring students. Organized by the Dean of Students Office, Honors Night is traditionally celebrated during the second week of May, and is sometimes confused with the Honors Program Recognition Ceremony and Reception, also held in May, during which members who complete the Program requirements are recognized. In 2008, OCC celebrated its 50th Honors Night with over 400 students receiving 414 scholarships worth a combined total of $360,000.
To find out more, see the Honors Night page on the OCC Scholarships website.