College Schools, Departments & Programs

Near Eastern Languages and Cultures

Departmental Honors Program

The departmental honors program consists of two tracks: a research honors track that requires independent research and the completion of an honors thesis written in English, and an Arabic language honors track that incorporates advanced training in spoken and written Arabic.   

The research honors track is designed to provide outstanding students with specialized advanced training in an approved area related to Near Eastern languages and cultures. Students are encouraged to enroll in this program in their junior or senior year. Working with primary sources in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, or Turkish, honors students will conduct research and complete an honors thesis or project.  Students must complete a minimum of two honor designated courses: N399 Reading for Honors (3 cr.) and N499 Honors Thesis (3 cr.). Students interested in enrolling in N399 should consult the director of undergraduate studies. In N399 students do advanced readings in Arabic, Persian, or Turkish in preparation for work on a research project. N499 involves a research project leading to the completion of the student's honors thesis. This course should be taken under the supervision of the faculty tutor who guided the student in N399.

The Arabic language honors track allows honors students to demonstrate outstanding proficiency and fluency in Arabic through the completion of advanced language coursework that incorporates extended formal presentations and the completion of two papers written in Arabic. Fulfilling the Arabic language honors track requires students to complete all the standard assignments for A400 and A450, such as quizzes, homework assignments, conversation hour, weekly readings, writing portfolio, and cultural activities. Additionally, students must:

  • Enroll in two credit hours of N399 Readings for Honors to complete the additional work required for the honors notation (one credit hour of N399 will be tied to A400 and one to A450);
  • Complete two 7,000 word papers (for a total of 14, 000 words) of high quality on some aspect of Arabic culture; one each in A400 and A450;
  • Give an in-class presentation on each paper at the end of the semester in A400 and A450;
  • Earn at least an A– in A400, A450, and the N399 hours.

Students interested in pursuing the Arabic language honors track should consult the director of undergraduate studies prior to enrollment in A400 and N399.