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Admission Requirements

Honors College applications are evaluated holistically. Factors include:

  • Academic profile
  • Writing skill and critical thinking demonstrated in essay prompt responses

To apply, complete the PSU application (all new students) or the Common App (new first year students only), the Honors College supplemental essay questions, and submit required documents.

Profile of Current Honors Students

  • 800+ enrolled Honors Students
  • 30% Nonresident
  • 38% Transfer Students
  • 30% First Generation College Students
  • 34% Diverse Ethnic and Racial Backgrounds
  • 3.82 Average High School GPA

How to Apply: New Students

PSU Application

New First Year and Transfer students who have not yet applied to PSU may apply to the Honors Collegevia the PSU general application.

If you alreadysubmitted the PSU application, .

Common Application

New First Year Students and Transfer applicants may apply for the Honors College while applying to PSU through the Common Application.

If you alreadysubmitted the application, follow the instructions sent to you via email to log in to your application portal and .

Coalition Application

New First Year Students and Transfer applicants may apply for the Honors College while applying to PSU through the Coalition Application.

If you alreadysubmitted the application, follow the instructions sent to you via email to log in to your application portal and .


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How to Apply: Current Students

If you are currently enrolled in classes at PSU you can apply to the Honors College via this separate application.


Admission Decision Notification

The Honors College receives applications to reviewonce the studentis formally admitted toֱState University.

Students who apply for the following fall term by January 1 will be notified with a decision by March 1. All other students will be notified with a decision within about 10 weeks of their admission to PSU;see below for specific admission notification dates.Missing GPA, transcripts, or test scores will delay the process.Due to the large volume of applications we receive, the Honors College cannot provide advanced notice of admissions decisions.

Honors College admissions decisions are sent via email to the email address the student used to apply to PSU. Application status can also be ֱ on the .


Honors College Application Deadlines andImportant Dates

Below are important dates and deadlines for University Honors College ֱ, refer to theadmissions dates and deadlines for more information.Applications to the Honors College are reviewed on a rolling basis. Applicants will be notified of their Honors College admission decision within 10 weeks of their admission to ֱState University.

Date Description
October 15 Deadline to apply forwinter term
January 1 Priority deadline to apply for fall term (first year and transfer applicants)
February 1 Deadline to apply for spring term
March 1 Notification of admission decision forfall termfor first year and transfer applicants who applied by the priority deadline
June 15 Enrollment confirmation priority deadline for fall term admits
August 1 Final deadline to apply to the Honors College for fall term

Winter and Spring Term Applicants

First year and transfer students can apply for the Honors College to start in fall, winter, or spring terms. The deadlines for each of these terms is listed above. If you miss the deadline, please still apply. Your application will be considered for the following term.

Current PSU students interested in enrolling in the Honors College should follow the instructions above to apply. If you are considering enrolling inHonors in your Senior year, you must meet with Honors advisorBrianna Averyprior to applying, to review your plan for completing the senior thesis. Application deadlines are the same as those for Sophomores and Juniors.


Application Essays

To be considered for the Honors College, applicants must answer the following essay questions.The minimum word requirement for each essay answer is 300 words; 500 words is the maximum. We suggest you write and edit your responses in a separate document and paste them into this application.

For further information about the vibrant community, interdisciplinary curriculum, and research opportunities, visitUniversity Honors College.

Honors Application Instructions

You are required to respond to question 1. You must also respond to either 2a or 2b to be considered for admission to the Honors College. Write a carefully composed, 300-500 wordessay in response to the prompts.

Question 1:Describe a topic, activity, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. How did you come to develop this interest? What is the experience like when you are engaged with it? Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more? What can we learn about you from this interest or passion?

Respond to one of the following prompts:

Question 2A:In her essay, “Peculiar Benefits,” the African American writer Roxane Gay writes,

“Privilege is a right or immunity granted as a peculiar benefit, advantage, or favor. There is racial privilege, gender (and identity) privilege, heterosexual privilege, economic privilege, able-bodied privilege, educational privilege, religious privilege and the list goes on and on. At some point, you have to surrender to the kinds of privilege you hold because everyone has something someone else doesn’t . . . . Privilege is relative and contextual. Few people in this world, and particularly in the United States, have no privilege at all. Among those of us who participate in intellectual communities, privilege runs rampant. We have disposable time and the ability to access the Internet regularly. We have the freedom to express our opinions without the threat of retaliation. We have smart phones and iProducts and desktops and laptops. If you are reading this essay, you have some kind of privilege. It may be hard to hear that, I know, but if you cannot recognize your privilege, you have a lot of work to do; get started.”

For this essay, show how you think with and respond to another writer. In a carefully crafted and well-organized essay of 300-500 words, describe what you understand Gay to be saying about privilege. Additionally, discuss what strikes you as significant about Gay’s understanding of privilege and why.

Question 2B:In the introduction to his book The Lies that Bind: Rethinking Identity, the philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah states:

"There’s no dispensing with identities, but we need to understand them better if we can hope to reconfigure them, and free ourselves from mistakes about them that are often a couple of hundred years old. Much of what is dangerous about them has to do with the way identities—religion, nation, race, class, and culture—divide us and set us against one another. They can be the enemies of human solidarity, the sources of war, horsemen of a score of apocalypses from apartheid to genocide. Yet these errors are also central to the way identities unite us today. We need to reform them because, at their best, they make it possible for groups, large and small, to do things together. They are the lies that bind."

For this essay, show how you think with and respond to another writer. In a carefully crafted and well-organized essay of 300-500 words, address the following questions: What do you think Appiah means by the "lies that bind" and how would you relate this to ways you think about identity?