Upper Division Honors Program

The second tier of the University Honors Program, the Upper Division Honors Program, is designed for students who are entering into their junior year, although may be started in the senior year as long as all of the credit hours can still be completed in time for graduation. Students who are accepted into Upper Division Honors will choose one of three curricular paths:

Research Path – Students complete an Honors research thesis either in their selected discipline, or may complete an interdisciplinary thesis.
Creative Path – Students complete a creative works project at an honors level appropriate to their discipline. Creative projects may include those in art, music, creative writing, graphic arts, dance or theatre.
Applied Path – Students complete an Honors independent applied project that results in an actual implemented program, event, curricular method, initiative, business plan, non-profit endeavor, or other approved projects that fall “outside the box.”

Students completing the Upper Division Honors receive recognition at commencement and on their diploma.


Check out some recent Upper Division Honors graduates!

Curing Dengue: A Small Molecule Approach to Flavivirus Inhibition

Elizabeth Eichinger, Pre-Health and Biomedical Sciences

Thesis Advisor: Dr. Susan Keenan

With cases of mosquito-borne infections on the rise and the increased range of dengue virus as global warming continues, there is a renewed urgency to develop an inexpensive broad-spectrum drug to treat these infections. Using computer modeling and laboratory testing, Elizabeth analyzed the efficacy of certain small molecules in inhibiting the spread of dengue virus.

Elizabeth Eichinger

Accessing Poetry in a Global Age

Amanda Byars, English Secondary Education

Thesis Advisor: Dr. Lisa Zimmerman

While largely untapped, poetry is a resource with endless potential to engage students with humanity and our global culture. Attempting to extend the benefits, Amanda taught a class on global poetry to college students. Both the qualitative and quantitative data gathered through the course demonstrated a clear increase in students' knowledge of and appreciation for poetry and a deeper connection to community and culture.

Amanda Jones

The NCAA Academic Progress Rate: A Policy Evaluation

Cody McDavis, Business Administration: Finance

Thesis Advisor: Dr. Robert Brustad

Cody analyzed the Academic Progress Rate (APR), a metric utilized by the NCAA to evaluate how student-athletes are performing academically. By consideration of the metric and a variety of factors that influence the performance of student-athletes, Cody found that this policy may not provide athletic departments with the appropriate focus to ensure academic success, and created and presented policy recommendations to improve the APR metric.

Cody McDavis

Pipes, Pedals and a Pianist: the Pipe Organ from a Pianist’s Perspective

Jasmine Aas, Music: Piano Performance

Thesis Advisors: Robert Ehle and Kim Pace

Aware of the pipe organ’s importance in western music and the instrument’s recent decline in the United States, Jasmine identified a need in churches for proficient organ players and the potential for pianists to learn the organ quickly. As a pianist herself, Jasmine learned how to play the organ and created a personal account of her experience, discussing the similarities and differences between the organ and piano and how that influenced her approach to each instrument. 

Jasmine Aas

Lower Division Honors Program

Coming to UNC with less than 45 credits? Interested in joining our community of scholars? Check out the Honors Interdisciplinary Program here!