Honors Program

The Honors Program at Tusculum is for bright, inquisitive and motivated students who excel in courses which provide a challenge.


The Tusculum College Honors Program is designed to offer challenging and engaging educational experiences to talented students committed to academic excellence.  The Program offers distinctive courses including honors versions of general education courses, selected departmental courses with honors options, and semester-long seminars with talented faculty and gifted peers.  The program is designed to help bright students hone their intellectual abilities and develop strong leadership skills through a variety of experiences.  As a community of engaged learners, members of the Honors Program are expected to become leaders in their community, raising the level of intellectual debate and civic engagement.


To satisfy requirements for the Honors Program, students must complete 22 semester hours in required honors courses.  A four (4) hour departmental Honors course may be substituted for the HNRS 301 Leadership course.

HNRS 101. Quest for Meaning

An interdisciplinary exploration of the question of meaning through close analysis of literary, philosophical, artistic, and religious materials.  Particular attention will be given to the development of effective writing and critical thinking skills.  This course will be offered in Block 4 of the freshman year and fulfills the Commons Humanities requirement. (4 hours credit)

HNRS 245. Special Topics Seminar

 Semester-long seminars will provide students with opportunities to explore selected topics over extended periods of time with other Honors students. Seminar topics will vary by semester and will be selected and taught by professors who are passionate about their subject matter. Seminars may be interdisciplinary or team taught. Seminars will meet twice each block throughout a semester. Seminars may include extensive readings, creative and reflective writing, analysis of various media, off-campus field trips, guest speakers, and extensive class discussion. (1 hour to be repeated for four topics for 4 hours credit)

HNRS 330. The Hebrew and Christian Traditions

This course will acquaint the student with the dominant themes of the books of the Old and New Testaments, the process through which they became canonical, and the struggles down to the present time over the meaning and relevance for issues of social ethics. This course fulfills the Commons Religious Traditions requirement. (4 hours credit)

HNRS 380. The Political Traditions of the West

This course will acquaint the student with the republican tradition of responsible and virtuous citizenship and of the individual rights tradition as they were developed in Europe and America.  Some consideration will be given to the relevance of these traditions for the world at large in the 21st century. This course fulfills the Commons Western Civic requirement. (4 hours credit)

HNRS 301. Leadership Studies

An interdisciplinary examination of the nature and history of leadership, models and exemplars of leadership, and the place of leadership within different types of communities.  This course is offered in the fall of every year and is open to all Tusculum juniors and seniors. (4 hours credit)

HNRS 401. Honors Project

A substantial independent project that draws on skills developed in the major and represents significant intellectual work at an advanced level. The project must have a written component and be presented in a public forum.  To be taken during the senior year. (2 hours credit)

Courses with approved Honors Components

Selected courses have an approved Honors component and fulfill the Commons Natural Science, Arts and Humanities, and Social Science requirements.   (See catalog for the list of available courses)


Entering students with an ACT score of 25 or higher (1130 or higher on the SAT) and a high school grade point average of at least 3.3 may be invited to apply to the program.  Students who do not meet these requirements but have demonstrated strong potential for academic success may seek admission.

Admission Process

Normally students are invited to enter the Honors Program as incoming freshman.  Sophomores may apply if they have achieved at least a 3.5 grade point average (G.P.A.) after their freshman year.  All students seeking admission should submit a formal application by January 15th, following their first semester at Tusculum. The application and essay is to be accompanied by a letter of recommendation from one of their professors at Tusculum College.  Students will submit a cover letter detailing why they believe they qualify for the program, followed by an interview with Honors Council members during Block 6.

 Program Requirements

To remain in good standing within the program, students must maintain a minimum Tusculum G.P.A of 3.3.  A grade of B- or higher is required in any Honors component to count toward Honors credit.


For more information, contact:
Dr. Tom Harlow
Associate Professor of Psychology
Director, Honors Program
Tusculum College
Email: tharlow@tusculum.edu
Extension: Ext. 5284
Address: Box 5091, Tusculum College, Greeneville, TN 37743