FAQ and Student Testimonials


Who do I contact with advising questions?

For Honors advising questions, please contact Dr. Gerardina Martin. For major specific questions, you should meet with your assigned department advisor. For scheduling information on an upcoming semester, Michelle Wills will email out the Honors full offerings before course registration begins.

In what order should I complete the Honors core classes?

Follow the sequence laid out in the document labeled: “Honor Core Course Sequence”

How do I know what classes are required for my major as an Honors student?



My child put a lot of time into AP classes and while it was a good experience, it was also somewhat draining. If college classes are of equal challenge, what is the value of taking even more high powered classes?

While good grades and strong academic performance are definitely important the "depth of knowledge" that is the aim of AP classes is not the primary focus of our Honors College. Students will get "depth" of knowledge within their majors. What Honors offers, is breadth of knowledge. Honors courses, ground in the liberal arts, are all interdisciplinary and focus around the broad theme of personal leadership development for the purpose of civic engagement. Through Honors students build academic relationships with bright, motivated, engaged peers who major in over 60 different programs offered on the campus. Through interdisciplinary study, Honors students gain insights into multiple perspectives change agents use to identify problems and seek solutions----to find the gifts and possibilities existing in themselves, in others, and in the contexts where they work and live.

How do AP credits work? Aren't those often "general education"?

These are really two questions. First, WCU does accept AP scores in all test areas. Each department has different regulations in terms of what AP score must be earned to give credit for a specific class. A full listing of test credits (including AP/IB/CLEP) can be found on the Registrar web page. Second, in terms of general education, traditional students at WCU must complete 48 credit hours of identified "general education" work. For Honors students, the nine core Honors courses, plus an additional class in either math or science, fulfills all general education requirements. For many majors, these hours become available as "directed elective classes" where students, with advisement from their academic majors and/or Honors, can consider exploring adding a minor (or two!) or even a double major and still be able to graduate in four years. Other options for the "elective classes" include the potential of a semester of international study or a full semester internship (similar to student teaching) where the students apply the theory of the classroom in the larger community. An important exception needs mention. If a major requires specific "cognate" courses that also count as "traditional" general education classes, then students still need to take those classes. For example, Chemistry majors must take CHE 103. That class is also a "general elective" option for other majors on campus, say, History. While the History major would not need to take CHE 103, the Chemistry Major still would.

I have taken more than 8 AP classes, isn't my general education already completed? Why would I do Honors?

In this case you have a dilemma. With that many AP credits, there are some majors that would allow you to possibly graduate in three years. For all sorts of economic reasons, that would be hard to turn down. What you would need to consider is the value of a four-year college experience and the opportunity to explore your options and soak up as much learning as possible. Ultimately, you can indeed graduate without an Honors designation, however, our alumni attest that Honors opens doors at times of job interviews and in terms of application for graduate programs. There will be a lot of individuals who graduate with a college degree, but only 80 per year will have the official transcript recognition of the Honors College.

If accepted, is it a requirement that Honors students live in Honors housing?

One of the benefits of WCU's Honors College is the living/learning community, which assists students in their academic and social development. Honors class assignments are group related projects, the extended availability for students to work collaboratively makes this community living ideal. Peer mentoring and group study is particularly valuable during midterm and final exam periods.
All Accepted students are required to live on the 7th floor of Allegheny Hall for their first year. The 7th floor contains a large central lounge, computer lab, free laundry facilities, and a music room.
Watch a virtual tour of Allegheny Hall!

If accepted, how soon is a decision required?

Admissions to Honors is competitive. We are limited annually to 80 seats. Seats are held once we receive a student's signed agreement of acceptance, an initial deposit is made to the university and a housing contract filed with Allegheny Hall. We do generate a wait list once our 80 seats are filled as there are often some shifts after the national deposit deadline of May 1.

Does Honors offer any scholarships?

Honors does not offer specific recruitment scholarships for first-year students. That being said, many Honors first-year students do qualify for university based merit scholarships. 

How are roommates chosen?

Entering Honors students are given designated housing in Allegheny Hall, an affiliated residence hall through University Student Housing. Students will experience roommate matching, just like every other student on campus, but the students available for matching will be the other accepted Honors students. USH will communicate with students when roommate matching will begin, usually in late May/early June.

Would being part of the Honors College interfere with playing a sport?

Each year we have had athletes involved in Honors, several on the varsity level. It does take commitment and coordination, but we have never lost a student from Honors due to an unresolved conflict between a commitment to a given sport and one to Honors. We work closely with the various team coaches to let them know in advance the time slots where Honors classes are offered. Accommodations have always been reached in terms of practice schedules and class absences (which are rare given the times of official athletic events) are recognized for officially sanctioned performance events.


Student Testimonials

What was appealing to you about the Honors College/influenced your decision?

"The Honors College was appealing to me because of its interdisciplinary approach to learning which exposed me to many perspectives and classes that I may have never considered taking such as the Honors Sustainability course or Honors in the Arts course. These courses challenged me to learn about topics outside of my nursing major."
Gabrielle Mahoney, class of 2022

"I was most excited to join the Honors College because of its emphasis on service and leadership. Serving the community around me has always been a passion of mine and is how I best lead. I was able to prepare professionally and personally the coursework and experiences only offered through the Honors College! " 
 Juah Toe, class of 2020

How has Honors impacted you thus far in your college career?

"Honors has played a HUGE role in my development as a leader by giving me various leadership roles ranging from the Honors College Senator, Community Service Coordinator and finally ending as a Peer Leader Mentor. Depending on your season, Honors continually has ways for you to stay connected and grow as a person."
Gabrielle Mahoney, class of 2022

"I joined the Honors College through the Bridge Program, and it opened the doors to meeting so many new peers and professors. I am able to take classes outside my major with a cohort of students and professors that have inspired me to be a leader and lifelong learner. " 
 Jessie Hazell, class of 2022

"The Honors College offers real opportunities for professional and personal growth. From my time in Honors, I've gotten the chance to explore my career, work with professors on projects, and set myself apart in my resume." 
 James Lingman, class of 2023

What has been your favorite honors-related event overall?

"My favorite Honors-related event is definitely the Nobel Peace Leadership Series. This multi-part event occurs in the Fall and allows first-year Honors students to attend and participate in the workshops created and executed by upperclassmen in the program. The workshops focus on Nobel Peace Prize laureates, their leadership traits, and how the lessons learned from their efforts can be applied to today's communities. The event and the connection the Honors College has created with the Nobel Institute is something truly unique to West Chester University and is something I am proud to be a part of!" 
 Ollie DeSarno, class of 2020

What was appealing to you about WCU (Other than the Honors College)?

"I appreciate the structure of the University; I find it to be very organized. There's a great amount of resources offered to the student body to help us succeed. My favorite resource is the peer mentor I received my freshman year through the Dowdy Multicultural Center."
Briaira Parker, class of 2023

"West Chester was just the perfect sized college for me with small, personable classes, but also enough people that you can always meet someone new. West Chester is also in a great location. It isn't too far away from Philadelphia and a plethora of other fun things to do, and everyone in the surrounding area is nice and welcoming."
Timothy Fetterman, class of 2023

"When I first stepped on campus at WCU I knew right away it was the school I wanted to attend. The reason I decided on WCU is still the reason I love it today. There is an unrivaled sense of college community, though there is a town and residential area around it, WCU is a place for 18-22 year old people to learn, grow and find themselves completely surrounded by their peers. When I thought about going to college, West Chester without knowing it, is what I imagined, and forever it will hold the perfect definition of “college life” for me. " 
 John R. McSweeney, class of 2022

"The College of Science and Mathematics, and more specifically the Department of Mathematics at WCU, really stood out to me during my college search. I didn't have a clear career path I wanted to pursue, and I knew this program would allow me the flexibility to explore several concentrations: pure math, actuarial science, applied statistics. The department offered a vast array of topics, and I'm more well-rounded in my career because of that exposure!" 
 Julia Edwards, class of 2021