Honors Program


The overarching purpose of the OTHP is to provide Oregon Tech students with a complementary academic curriculum and a collection of extracurricular learning experiences that promote a more well-rounded future career professional, a socially responsible person, and connected and liberally educated student: this is the idea of the professional as a person. A professional, understood in this way, is a person connected to many communities, locally and globally, scholarly and civic-oriented, and is a person who strives to make the most of those connections with others to lead a more meaningful life.

To graduate from the Oregon Tech Honors Program, students must accomplish the following:
  • participate in Honors events and activities
  • complete 24 credit hours of Honors courses
  • complete the Honors Answer Project

Honors Course Requirements

All Oregon Tech Honors Program (OTHP) students must complete a required number of Honors courses (see below), Honors Designated or Honors Option courses, including a capstone thesis/senior project/externship (the Honors Project) supervised by the honors program and presented to an honors faculty committee. To graduate from the University Honors Program, they must have a cumulative GPA of 3.5.

First Year:

HUM 107 Honors Idea Seminar I, II, and III (1 credit each)
Satisfies social science general education requirement.

Second Year:

HUM 207 Honors Question Seminar I, II, and III (1 credit each)
Satisfies humanities general education requirement. 

Third Year:

HUM 307 Honors Answer Seminar I, II, III (1 credit each)
Satisfies humanities general education requirement.

The main outcome of the Third Year Seminar sequence is the completion of the Honors Answer Project.

All Years:

Honors Option Courses
15 additional credits of courses with an “A” suffix: e.g., COM 246-01A

A minimum of 24 total Honors credits is required for graduation from the Honors Program. Courses taken as an independent study, special seminar, or online may all be included in that total if they are taken as an Honors Option course. All Honors courses must be completed with a grade of “B” or higher.

Honors Idea Seminar I, II, and III

Ideas shape the world, and ideas change the world. The Honors Idea Seminar is the required three-term sequence of one-credit seminars for first-year OTHP students devoted to thinking through the past (fall term), present (winter term), and future (spring term) of one idea, each year, that has contributed to the world and influenced the how people live in the world today. Each year, first-year students are treated to an "idea theme" that will never be repeated. Students read a required "anchor" text each term, sometimes go on local field trips, and learn about ideas from guest speakers.

Honors Question Seminar I, II, and III

The art of asking important, meaningful, and productive questions is valued in the Honors Program. The Honors Question Seminar is the required three-term sequence of one-credit seminars for second-year OTHP students devoted to understanding and working with questions. Students study Warren Berger's A More Beautiful Question in the fall, a special selection of a Penguin Classic each winter term, and Clayton Christensen's How Will You Measure Your Life? in the spring term. Through these required readings, students will develop the ability to construct the kinds of questions that will make them more effective students, and ultimately more capable career professionals and greater contributors to society.

Honors Answer Seminar I, II, and III

Answers are the solutions to the work we accomplish with ideas and questions. The Honors Answer Seminar is the final required three-term sequence of one-credit seminars for third-year OTHP students devoted to completing the Honors Answer Project. Students learn how to derive Answer Observations and Answer Insights by studying three special texts over the course of the three terms. The Honors Answer Project consists of two questions: The Honors Faculty Question and the Honors Student Question. The Honors Faculty Question asks students to consider the relationship between ideas, questions, and answers, which they have been studying for the past 2-3 years. The Honors Student Question provides students with the opportunity to answer their own questions based on something about which they are curious. This third seminar sequence caps off the Honors Program with the Honors Answer Symposium: a unique opportunity to share their answers with peers, friends, and faculty.

Honors Designated and Honors Option Courses

In addition to the two Honors Designated seminars (above), students are required to complete 2-3 additional Honors Courses. These can be Honors Designated courses, like an Honors section of WRI 122. Classes that are presented as Honors Courses will have an A attached to their course number. Or these can be courses taken as Honors Option courses, for which a student and faculty will develop a different or additional set of course requirements and submit an Honors Option Course Contract to the Honors Program to allow students to earn official Honors Course credit.

In addition to meeting the course requirements outlined above, Honors Program students also must complete an Honors Project, which may be, but is not limited to, a community service project or an academic project, as a requirement for graduation from the Honors Program. A service-learning project, for example, fosters civic engagement and prepares students to become leaders in their communities. An academic project might provide students with a sample of writing when applying to Graduate School.

The Honors Answer Project

In the third year of the Honors Program, students participate in the Honors Answer Project.  Students answer two questions: the Faculty Question and the Student Question.

The Faculty Question is collectively chosen each year by the faculty of the Honors Program.  In answering the Faculty Question, students synthesize their experience over the past three years pursuing ideas, questions, and answers.

The Student Question is unique to each student.  Each student develops and researches their own curiosity-driven question.

 Each answer is developed in an essay, and students present their Student Question and answer in a symposium at the end of the academic year.

Participate in Scheduled Honors Activities


  Honors Orientation, Induction Ceremony, Advising Meeting, and Last Class

Students are required to attend an all-day Orientation to be held the Wednesday prior to the first day of classes at the start of their first year in the OTHP. Additionally, Students will attend an Induction Ceremony that same Wednesday evening. During the first week of their participation in the OTHP, students will attend an Advising Meeting during which time the Director or Assistant Director will review the OTHP Curriculum and Program Requirements in toto. All Students are asked to attend specific graduation activities, the Last Class, as well as other to be designated events and days of significance to the OTHP.

  Honors Experiential Learning in the Outdoors (HELIOS) Fieldtrips

Students are required to participate in regularly scheduled Honors Program experiential learning field trips: approximately one per term for their first year in the program. These activities include one weekend educational excursion each academic quarter, for one day of the weekend. Examples of such excursions include trips to Crater Lake National Park for snowshoeing, tours of the Tule Lake Unit, WWII Valor in the Pacific National Monument, which includes “the Tule Lake Segregation Center, the largest and most controversial of the sites where Japanese Americans were incarcerated during World War II,” and field trips to Upper Klamath Lake by canoe. All required activities are at no cost to the student.

  Honors Connections Events

It is important for OTHP students to connect across the disciplines, with the campus, and to be connected to their community. Each term, the Honors Program will identify talks, lectures, films, or other opportunities as “Honors Connections” events. These events serve to foster a sense of community among the students, expand their cultural horizons, and generally broaden their sense of engagement with the world and community as Honors Program students. OTHP students are expected to attend four such events per academic year. Multiple opportunities will be available each term.

  Honors Connections Events Journal

We ask students to reflect on how their experiences at these events connect them to the world. The Journal provides students with an ongoing opportunity to reflect on both critically and creatively the impact of these events on their lives and how such events cause us to rethink our connections to others in the world.

  Our World to Lead and Serve (OWLS) Projects

Honors Program students also recognize that in addition to connecting to their world academically, they can make important contributions to their world through service and leadership projects. Our World to Lead and Serve (OWLS) Projects require all Honors Program students to complete 50 hours of approved leadership and service projects or activities each year for the first two years in the Honors Program. The OWLS Projects may benefit the Oregon Tech Honors Program, the Oregon Tech campus and students, the Klamath Falls community, or another city or place that is important to the student. Students may fulfill these projects individually or as part of a group. See the documents below for examples.

OTHP Student Support

Honors Program students, Honors Program Core Faculty, the Director and Assistant Director all share in the responsibility for a student’s progress through the program. Honors Program students will meet with the Director or Assistant Director each fall to discuss courses and activities, and the student’s experiences in the program. To support the goal of progress and completion, students will receive an Honors Program Progress Toward Graduation report, which will account for all requirements toward graduation from the Oregon Tech Honors Program.