Information for Faculty

Washburn University faculty are essential to the success of the Honors Program.  Washburn University is a student-centered, teaching-focused institution, and we are proud of the learning experience the university offers.  Faculty who teach in the Honors Program challenge and support Honors students in myriad ways.

Faculty members interested in teaching an Honors Course are invited to complete the following forms (see links below). The New Course form is for first-time submissions, or for honors courses which have been offered for five years. In the event that the course is approved to be an Honors course, the Semester Offering Form is to be completed when the course is ready to be offered. Note that all honors courses fall under the Creative & Critical Thinking, University Student Learning Outcome. Therefore, all courses approved as honors courses must include learning objectives built with Critical Thinking in mind (for more information on this, see the New Course Form).

New Course Form

The New Course Form can be completed and submitted at any time for review, pre-approval, and to be kept on file by the Director of the University Honors Program. The form will only need to be resubmitted if there is a significant change to a course, such as a different instructor, different syllabus/course content, or different instructional method; however, it must be renewed every five years.

Prior to completing the New Course Proposal, please be sure to review the program's mission and student learning outcomes in the Course Catalog beginning on page 48 as a guideline for your course in addition to the following criteria concerning Honors courses:

  • Courses do not qualify as Honors courses simply by adding work for students on top of what is required in non-Honors courses; instead, Honors courses aim to enhance students' academic experiences.

  • Honors courses should be more rigorous and include more depth and/or breadth in the topic than a traditional course, and there should be more student engagement. For example, students can engage by having additional discussions (with or without the instructor), writing, and more focused projects.

  • Honors courses should include components that teach advanced critical and creative thinking (e.g., interdisciplinary elements, engagement with primary sources, diverse perspectives and critical approaches, ethical issues, epistemological issues) and may include innovative pedagogy.

  • In Honors classes, students are encouraged to engage with difficult issues and learn from each other through their exchanges.

  • Courses at the 200-level need to include three student learning outcomes (critical thinking) as do courses at the 300-level. The wording and assessment tools are available on our Quality Indicators page.

Semester Offering Form

This form must be completed and submitted by the deadline below for each semester the course is proposed to be offered. For every semester a professor wishes to teach an honors course, a new Semester Offering Form must be submitted by the deadline below.

Submission dates

To ensure that materials are reviewed by members of the Honors Advisory Board in a timely manner, submit your materials by the deadline for the appropriate semester:

FALL 2023 - January 18, 2023

SPRING 2024 - August 21, 2023

If you have any problems completing or accessing the forms contact (ext. 2062).  Completed forms may be sent either as a hard copy via intercampus mail or as an electronic file via attachment to an email to  Be sure to include attachments for the New Course Proposal (syllabus and current vita).

Honors students have the option of fulfilling Honors course requirements by completing Honors Contracts.  Honors students establish these contracts in collaboration with faculty members teaching regularly scheduled courses in which the students are enrolled.  Faculty have discretion as to whether they will agree to supervise an Honors Contract.  Faculty members who are interested in supervising Honors Contracts may consult the contract forms below::

It is the responsibility of the student to fill out and submit the contract form, with the input and consent of the instructor.
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