Graduating with University Honors

By completing the prescribed honors course requirements and maintaining a minimum GPA of 3.5, students are entitled to graduate with University Honors. Students who complete the requirements and maintain a GPA of at least 3.75 graduate with Distinction in University Honors. Students who graduate in either category are awarded a medallion at a pre-commencement ceremony, which they may wear at commencement with their caps and gowns.  Both designations are permanently recorded in your transcripts.

Requirements: A total of 18 credits with an Honors designation. A typical student’s path is:

  • Freshman/Sophomore Years: Three courses from the Honors Core (lower-division Honors courses which fulfill general education requirements) – 9 credits
  • Junior/Senior Years: Two upper-division Honors courses (often fulfilling VWW requirements) – 6 credits
  • Honors Capstone Experience: 3 credits
  • Total: 18 credits

Degree Tracks for Graduating With Honors

These are a few tracks developed by the Honors College and Departments across the University to guide students on their path to graduate with University Honors. If your major is not listed, you can still graduate with honors by fulfilling the Honors College Requirements. More degree plans coming soon! Click here to see the degree maps we have so far!

International Study Option

Students in the Honors College are encouraged to participate in international study. An NMSU Honors student with at least a 3.5 GPA may earn a waiver of up to 3 credit hours required for University Honors via study abroad (not including the Senior Capstone Experience Project). This waiver will be awarded for college credit earned while participating in any international study program approved by the Honors College or the Office of International Study. One honors hour will be waived for each 3 semester credit hours earned in study abroad with a grade of ‘A’, ‘B’, or ‘S’. Permission to use this option must be approved in advance by the Honors College.

Note: Waiver of university honors credit for service learning or international study does not reduce or otherwise affect the total number of credit hours required for graduation, nor can it be applied toward the Senior Capstone Requirement.

Honors Thesis or Senior Capstone

For more information about completing an Honors Thesis, click here.

Graduating with an Honors Certificate

Students who do not have the flexibility to complete University Honors may still graduate with an Honors Certificate. Simply completing both, required, Viewing the Wider World classes through the Honors College will permit you to achieve this recognition; however, you can take any upper division courses (300-400 level) to complete this requirement. Don’t forget you can contract a course. Find the form here: Honors Contract.


  • Complete 6 upper division honors credits