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University Honors Program

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senior thesis or project.

For Whom Intended

The Senior Honors Project/Thesis is intended for juniors and seniors in good standing in the University Honors Program. The objectives and rough guidelines for the Honors Thesis are listed below. The Honors Program is willing to help you with this process in any way that it can! Some additional resources to consider or make use of when writing your thesis include:

Objectives

As the purpose of the University Honors Program is to provide dedicated students an opportunity to express their excellence, the Senior Honors Project/Thesis allows Honors students to synthesize the materials they have assimilated from their educational experiences, to demonstrate the ability to do an extended piece of research and writing indicating breadth of knowledge and grasp of ideas, as well as scholarly attention to precise, verified and documented detail in a work that illustrates students' investigative powers.

The Senior Honors Project/Thesis is perhaps the most challenging and stringent requirement in the University Honors Program. Students who plan to complete the Senior Project should make arrangements with the Honors Director and the respective college coordinator, and a departmental advisor. It is the departmental thesis advisor who works with the student and who ultimately grade the senior project/thesis.

Guidelines

  • By the middle of the junior year, students should consider ideas for projects that might be developed into Senior Honors Projects/Theses.
  • It is the student's responsibility to make initial contact with faculty members who could serve as possible advisors.
  • The faculty advisor selected should have expertise in the student's proposed area of work.
  • A time table should be created between the student and advisor and should be adhered to carefully (should the project require experimental procedures, for example, it would be desirable to recommend finishing such procedures during the first semester of the senior year and then using the second semester for analyzing data and writing).
  • Normally, Senior Honors Projects are taken for a minimum of three semester hours or a maximum of six semester hours. If the student extends the six hours credit throughout the senior year, a grade indicating "in progress" will be given for the first semester's work and then converted to a regular grade upon completion of the project. The advisor determines the grade for the Senior Project/Thesis.
  • The thesis should be initiated at least eight months before the commencement at which the degree is awarded and must be completed while the student is in residence at the University. The thesis must be approved by the thesis advisor and submitted to the Director of the University Honors Program in final form with the signatures of the advisor and the college coordinator on the approval sheets of all copies no later than five working days prior to the conferral of the degree. Three final copies of the thesis (one copy for the Project/Thesis Advisor, and two copies for the University Library) are to be submitted.
  • The form of the Senior Honors Project/Thesis may vary from one department to another because of departmental policy. However, some general guidelines are given the student (see Attached).
  • In its final form, the original and first two copies of the thesis must be on acid-free or archival paper. It should also conform to the following specifications:
    • Word-processing.The thesis must be typewritten/wordprocessed on one side of the paper with black ribbon/inkjet/laser using 12 or 14 point font and should be doublespaced. Copies must be grammatically perfect with no unsightly erasures, cancellations, or irregularity in spacing.
    • Margins.There should be a left-hand margin of one and one-half inches, and a right-hand margin of one inch, and top and bottom margins of one inch each.
    • Pagination. The pages of the text should be numbered with arabic numerals in the upper right-hand margin one inch form the top of the paper. Numerals need no punctuation and should begin with the second page of the text.
    • Title Page. The title page should follow the form illustrated on the next page. Abbreviations should not be used.
    • Acceptance Page. An acceptance page (copy attached) must be included following the title page. The page will be typed as part of the thesis and signed by the project/thesis advisor and the college honors coordinator.
    • Binding. The two original copies turned in to the Honors Program Director will be forwarded to the UNO Library for binding and cataloging and will become a permanent part of the UNO Library collection.