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Hands-On Learning

Honors Carolina lets you play a big role in shaping your education. From planning your own research project to designing your own Honors seminar, Honors Carolina gives you opportunities — at Chapel Hill and around the world.

Undergraduate Research

Cutting-edge research is an integral part of the culture at Carolina. Honors Carolina students enjoy countless opportunities to work with faculty members conducting breakthrough research in almost any field. More than 90% of Honors Carolina students get involved in research projects, and many begin that work as early as their first year.

Burch Fellowships: Pursue a Passionate Interest

This unique program helps some of Carolina’s most promising students design their own educational adventure anywhere in the world. Recent Honors Carolina students have biked across western China learning about ethnic minority groups, traveled to the Philippines to study how bamboo can mitigate the effects of climate change, and worked with NASA researchers studying the possibility of life on other planets.

The Dunlevie Honors Colloquium

Honors Carolina students meet eight times each semester to discuss a broad interdisciplinary topic of their own choosing. Past topics have included Translational Skills: From Academy to Market, Arab Spring and its Consequences, Health Management and Development: Confronting Global Health Issues, Immigration: What Will America Look Like?, and The Ideals of Public Service. Carolina’s most distinguished teaching scholars join the colloquium to discuss ideas, discoveries, and challenges related to the topic at hand.

Scholars Seminars

Honors Carolina students take the lead in designing three thought-provoking seminars each year. Students are responsible for planning the syllabi and selecting the instructors.

C-START: Carolina Students Taking Academic Responsibility through Teaching

A limited number of outstanding seniors are selected each year to develop and teach a course of their own creation. Students spend the Fall semester developing lesson plans with a faculty mentor, then teach a weekly seminar in the Spring. Current C-START classes include Exploring Claims and Controversies in Nutrition; Mass Incarceration in the Land of the Free; Music of Conflict – The Sounds and Expressions of War; and  International Relations Theory and the Rise of China.

Senior Honors Thesis

Honors Carolina students can cap their undergraduate experience with a senior thesis, partnering with a faculty mentor to develop original research and creative work. Students who successfully defend their theses before a faculty review panel graduate with Honors or Highest Honors. For many Honors Carolina students, the thesis becomes a first publication or an important part of their application to graduate or professional school.

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Building Relationships

Chemistry Professor Kevin Weeks talks about how research helps build relationships between professors and students.

Investing in You

Student readingEach year, endowment income and private gifts from alumni and friends provide Honors Carolina and its students with more than $500,000 to support research fellowships, study abroad scholarships, the development of new Honors courses, learning opportunities outside of the classroom, and a dynamic roster of faculty-led research and study programs around the globe.