Advantages and Considerations for Pursuing Honors


Advantages to Pursuing Honors

Pursuing Honors as an undergraduate offers many academic and personal benefits.  It allows you to do the following:

  • Initiate in-depth research in a field you may continue to pursue in graduate school or throughout your career
  • Demonstrate to postgraduate programs or future employers that you can do independent, creative work
  • Participate in advanced original research in close, one-on-one consultation with a faculty member
  • Develop skills that will be useful throughout life, in many different settings, such as
    • Mental discipline
    • Intellectual judgment and independence
    • Capacity to pursue an area in depth
    • Self confidence
    • Mastery of the material
    • The ability to plan and implement a project and see it to its end
    • The ability to meet a challenge and succeed
  • Contribute to the knowledge of the world and perhaps discover your life’s intellectual passion

Other Considerations for Pursuing Honors

Many qualified students decide not to pursue honors. Stanford students engage in a host of academic and extracurricular activities (public service, athletics, student government) that require serious time commitments. It’s simply not possible to do everything. Incidentally, pursuing honors is not the only means to engage deeply in a field of study that interests you.

You can take advantage of a variety of opportunities to involve yourself in research outside of an honors program. These can involve close collaboration with a faculty member or graduate student. See Research and Independent Projects to learn more.