Economics Honors Track
The purpose of the Economics Honors Track is to serve our majors by facilitating and encouraging their participation in the University's Honors Program.
The Economics Honors Track provides our most highly motivated majors the chance to conduct advanced study and research in close contact with a faculty advisor from the department.
The research-oriented Economics Honors Track admits students after they join the University's Honors Program. Regardless of their future plans, distinguishing oneself with an Honors Degree in Economics promises to be very rewarding and gives students a beyond undergraduate experience. By becoming an Economics Honors Track student, students greatly increase their chances of going to top graduate schools with scholarships.
All relevant details about admission, course load, graduation and evaluation can be found in the links above.
The Economics Honors Track is a research-oriented program. It admits students after they join the University's Honors Program. Regardless of their future plans, distinguishing oneself with an Honors Degree in Economics promises to be very rewarding and gives students a beyond undergraduate experience. By becoming an Economics Honors Track student, students highly increase their chances of going to top graduate schools with scholarship.
Other benefits include: Early registration for classes; small, rigorous discussion-based classes reserved only for Honors students; personalized academic advising; preparation for graduate school; being actively engaged in scholarship, leadership, and service; and housing with other Honors students.
The Economics Honors students must complete all requirements of the Economics major and Honors Program. Some Economics courses may substitute for required Honors Program courses as detailed below, and thus enable graduation without extra course load.
Requirements and Coursework:
- HON 491: Interdisciplinary Junior Honors Seminar
(3 credits, W-Writing Intensive) (or, by petition, an Economics graduate course)
This course gives students a graduate-style seminar experience. The classes meet in small groups (twelve maximum) once a week to investigate and discuss an interesting topic from outside the participants' majors. These seminars challenge students by taking them outside the specialized focus of their major and by introducing them to the different ways other majors have of approaching a problem. The emphasis is on student participation, on writing and speaking to the point, on analysis, and on intellectual growth.
- Submission of a 10-12 page written research proposal, accompanied by a signed proposal and mentor form. This should be accomplished with at least two full semesters remaining. We highly recommend taking HON 495: Introduction to Research (3 credits, W-Writing Intensive and O-Oral Intensive), which is designed to guide students through the process of writing a research proposal. Students may also take an Economics graduate course designed for this purpose, or 3 credits of “ECON 499: Advanced Directed Research” to write their research proposals.
This proposal should include an abstract, outline, focused bibliography, and as much preliminary writing (e.g., a review of relevant scholarship) as possible. See the guidelines for the proposal on the Honors website for more information.
- HON 494 Honors Workshop
This is the companion workshop for the first semester of HON 496 or ECON 499. It is designed to familiarize students with the protocol for independent study with their Faculty mentor, criteria and timeline for the Senior Honors Project, and requires students to submit a detailed plan of research for their HON 496/ECON 499 work.
- HON 496: Senior Honors Project
(6 credits) (may use 3 credits of “ECON 499: Advanced Directed Research”)
This course is an independent study under the supervision of an Economics faculty advisor selected by the student. The Senior Honors Project is a student's best chance as an undergraduate to dig deeply into a subject that interests him or her. Every year, these projects win a number of the research prizes at UHM; every year some are turned into published articles or policy papers
The Department of Economics also offers “A section” versions of some of the Economics courses: “ECON 130A: Principles of Microeconomics” and ECON 131A: Principles of Macroeconomics” are usually offered every year and additional courses such as “ECON 362A: Trade Policy and Globalization” are offered occasionally. “A section” courses are special sections of regular classes that are reserved for Honors students only. Generally, such courses provide students with a more in-depth and challenging exploration of the course subject matter, rather than covering more material than the non-Honors equivalent.
Students can join the Economics Honors Track any time after they are accepted into the UH Manoa Honors Program.
- Acceptance into the UH Honors program.
- A declared Economics major.
- Econ GPA of 3.3.
- A letter of endorsement from a faculty in the Department of Economics agreeing to be the thesis advisor for the Senior Honors Thesis
- All of these requirements should be documented on the application form and the letter of endorsement form and both forms should be submitted to the Undergraduate Advisor in the Department of Economics Office (Saunders 542).
- Students must complete all program components of both the Economics Honors Track and the Manoa Honors Program to become a candidate for graduation with an Honors designation.
- Average GPA in the top 25% of the Economics major graduating class of the past year is required for graduation in addition to all other Manoa Honors GPA minimum requirements.
- Because the preparation for research and independent study are structured as a rehearsal for tasks routinely performed in a professional career, Economic Honors Track students are also expected to know how to publicly present their Senior Projects. All Economics Honors Track students must present their research at the campus-wide Undergraduate Research Symposium and Exhibit in the semester of their planned graduation. Advance notification about the date and time this presentation takes place needs to be communicated to the faculty advisor and to the Economics Department Honors Track Chair.
Evaluation of an Honors Candidacy
HON 491 is letter graded while HON 495 is graded CR/NC. Students will receive overall assessment for HON 495 in the form of a written report at the end of the semester. This evaluation will be submitted to the Honors Program and will be used by the Honors Council, among other materials, in determining the final designation with which students will graduate. Credits for HON 496 are letter graded by the project advisor.
The Senior Honors Project itself is evaluated with written comments by a committee comprised of the Economics faculty advisor and at least two other faculty with the same range of possible designations as in HON 495.
The UH Honors Council reviews the evaluations of the Research course, poster and oral presentations, and the Senior Project as well as the student's GPA and decides the final designation with which the student will graduate: "No Honors," "Honors," "High Honors," or "Highest Honors." This designation appears on a diploma made especially for graduating students. They are also given a special notice in the Commencement Program and a gold cord to wear over their gowns.
The Economics department will also provide a separate documentation noting the student graduated with Honors in Economics with the appropriate designation.
Economics Honors Award
The Department of Economics will reward, once a year, the best Economics Honors Track thesis an award (subject to the availability of funds). Details to be announced.
Here are a list of forms for the Economics Honors Program: