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The Honors Program

Course Conversion

Guidelines to Convert Courses Not Designated as Honors Courses

The Course Conversion process is designed for a student to earn Honors credit in a course that is not already listed as an Honors course. An Honors Course Conversion is a method of adding an Honors component to a course, and is generally used when a student wishes to study a topic more in-depth for which no Honors section is offered.

Message to UK Faculty: A Course Conversion requires careful planning between student and professor, collaboration throughout the semester as needed, and a commitment from both parties to follow through with the conversion process. We appreciate your willingness to assist Honors students in earning Honors credit for your course, and we hope that your participation in this process is rewarding for both professor and student. The following guidelines will assist you in converting a course for Honors credit.

Converting a Course to Honors Credit

Deadlines: A Course Conversion Proposal and signed Course Conversion Contract must be submitted to the Honors Program Director of Student Services by the end of the 3rd week for the Fall and Spring semester courses, and by the end of the 1st week for Summer and Winter Intersession courses. Students should make every effort to seek approval for a Course Conversion prior to the beginning of the semester. Submitting the signed Proposal and Course Conversion Contract by the appropriate deadline is not a guarantee of approval.

Eligible Students: Second, third and fourth year Honors students are welcome to seek approval for an Honors Course Conversion. First year Honors students are typically not approved for an Honors Course Conversion, except by special permission of the Director of Student Services.

Eligible Courses: The Course Conversion process may be used to convert any 200-level or above regular course, including Education Abroad courses. For graduate courses numbered 600 and above a signed Course Conversion Approval Form is required, however, completing the Course Conversion Proposal Form is not required since they automatically qualify for Course Conversion. Students applying for a Course Conversion for courses numbered in the 500-level must follow the graduate course requirements provided in the course syllabus, and will be required to attach a syllabus copy with the signed Course Conversion Approval Form.

Course Content: Honors Courses are designed to follow more rigorous standards than regular courses. The course content should be focused on increased quality and complexity. It should be more challenging; should address more complex questions; should include more advanced readings; and overall should foster a deeper exploration and understanding of the course content.

Examples of additional Course Conversion content include:

  • researching/writing an additional scholarly paper
  • additional lab work or an enhanced project with accompanying readings and discussion
  • completing an additional set of challenging problems or laboratory experiments
  • participation in additional service activities or field experience with accompanying report/analysis
  • attendance in outside of classroom enrichment activities or special events with accompanying analysis

Workload: The additional workload for a typical Course Conversion should amount to approximately 10-20 additional hours.

Meetings: To ensure the course conversion process is followed adequately, two or three 1-on-1 meetings between professor and student are strongly recommended.

Group Conversions: At their discretion, a professor may oversee a group of Honors students enrolled in the same course and allow them to convert the course as a group by having them follow the same set of additional requirements, or may oversee separate individual requirements for each student. Approval for Group Conversions can be done using one single approval form if the students will follow the same set of additional requirements. For Group Conversions in which the students are completing different requirements separate proposals and forms for each student are required.

Eligibility to Supervise a Course Conversion: Lecturers, Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, and Professors may approve and oversee a Course Conversion. Graduate Students or Teaching Assistants may not directly oversee a Course Conversion. The Honors Program welcomes a team-based approach to Course Conversions, therefore, at their discretion, the Faculty of Record is able to assign oversight of the Course Conversion to other faculty members.

Grades: A minimum grade of "B" is required for the student to earn Honors Credit for the converted course. Courses designated as Pass/Fail are not eligible for Course Conversion.

Steps for Obtaining Approval:

1. The student will submit a Course Conversion Proposal to the professor, detailing the additional work they would like to do above and beyond the regular course requirements.

2. If the professor approves, the student and professor complete and sign the Honors Course Conversion Contract.

3. The contract is then submitted to the Honors Program office (in person or via e-mail) to the Honors Program Director of Student Services by the appropriate deadline.

4. A review of the proposal and contract is completed by the Honors Program Director of Student Services. The Honors Program Director of Student Services sends an e-mail to the professor and student indicating approval, denial, or if additional information is needed prior to approval.

5. During finals week, the Honors Program Director of Student Services will contact the professor to ensure the additional workload has been completed by the student.

6. Honors Credit is awarded provided a grade of B or higher is earned in the course. Submitting the Course Conversion Proposal and signed Course Conversion Approval Form by the appropriate deadline is not a guarantee of approval.

Questions: If you have any questions regarding the Course Conversion process please contact the Honors Program office at 859-257-3111.