Honors Program

female students in caps and gowns

Springboard to success

The MCU Honors Program offers high-achieving students the opportunity to enrich their college experience through interdisciplinary honors courses and career-enhancing experiences that encourage critical thinking, collaboration and connection.

Program benefits

  • Fresh, relevant honors courses
  • Exclusive events and networking opportunities
  • Eligibility for accelerated degree programs
  • Close mentoring relationships with faculty invested in your success
  • A tight-knit community of peers that fosters friendship and scholarship
  • Honors housing option through living learning communities
  • Honors designation on bachelor’s diploma
  • Special recognition at graduation

Frequently asked questions

The MCU Honors Program attracts students who really want to learn and grow, dig a little deeper and broaden their perspectives. You will take courses with professors from different departments, who will challenge you to think differently about the topics you study. Since the classes are small, it’s an easy way to meet people, make new friends and join a community unlike anything else on campus. Completing an honors program prepares you for the future and can open doors with potential employers or admissions officers of graduate or professional schools.

Entering freshmen must have attained a minimum 3.5 grade point average in high school. Transfers and continuing students must maintain a cumulative 3.5 college grade point average. The program is open to all majors. We will notify eligible students.

Honors classes are not designed to be harder, but more interdisciplinary. They’re intended for the motivated student who is curious and eager for greater analysis. Honors courses allow you to explore topics more deeply, more broadly, and with greater sophistication. They tend to emphasize discussion and projects over lectures and traditional examinations, and typically involve more faculty-student interaction. Plus, they’re a lot of fun.

No. The MCU Honors Program was designed to be efficient. Most honors courses also meet one or more general education or degree program requirements.


You may take as few or as many honors courses as fit your schedule. Course offerings vary across semesters. Successful completion of four honors courses will qualify you for an honors designation on your bachelor’s degree diploma and special recognition at graduation.

Some general education courses offer separate honors sections, such as World Religions and Data Analysis. Other options may include:

  • Perspectives on Leadership Through Film and Theater
  • California in the Global Economy
  • Thirsty Planet: The Science, Economics and Politics of Water
  • Psychology of Creativity
  • Virtual and Augmented Reality
  • Humans and Machines in the Age of Artificial Intelligence

As soon as you reach a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher at MCU, you will be able to register for honors courses.

Yes. With a little planning, you may be able to complete a bachelors’ degree in three years depending on your major and specific course requirements. You may take up to 20 units per semester as part of undergraduate tuition. You can also get a head start on your graduate study and complete both a bachelor’s and an MBA in as little as four or five years.

Honors students will enjoy a variety of exclusive events and networking opportunities, including field trips, company tours (SpaceX), museum and exhibition visits, special guest speakers and lectures, film screenings, dinner conversations with faculty and university leadership, career workshops and original research.

No. However, you may choose to apply to live in an honors living learning community at The Villas. Placement is subject to availability.

First-time freshmen who are eligible for honors at the time of admission should check their invitation packet and award letter. Contact the Office of Student Financial Services for questions about merit awards and financial aid.