Honours Theses Guidelines
Updated: October 2015
A student with the appropriate prerequisites may also register to complete an honours thesis that adds an honours designation to the bachelor's degree.
Undergraduate Thesis (History 4995 – Six Credit Hours)
Senior students majoring in History may be eligible to complete an Honours Thesis within the department and earn the corresponding designation on their official transcripts and degree parchments. The thesis will be written over the course of an academic year, and is therefore worth 6 credits. The entire thesis, including introduction, conclusion, and bibliography, should be approximately sixty pages in length. The History Honours thesis is a single work that represents the pinnacle of achievement of an undergraduate student in History. Students who write an Honours Thesis will be required to give a public presentation on their research at the end of the spring semester. Once the thesis has been completed, it will be added to the collections of the University library.
The prerequisites are as follows:
- fourth-year standing (minimum 90 credit-hours)
- a cumulative GPA of 3.3
- a GPA in History courses of 3.5
- History 2222
- One Independent Study in History at the 3000 or 4000 level
Students who satisfy these criteria, and are interested in writing an Honours Thesis, should first of all discuss potential thesis topics with a professor who has agreed to supervise them. Please note that only exceptional students, with proven scholarly acumen, will be allowed to undertake an Honours Thesis: the prerequisites listed above will not be waived under any circumstances.
The evaluation and final grading of History 4995 will be done jointly by the student's supervisor and an additional departmental advisor, chosen in consultation with the chair.
*History 4995 CANNOT be used to complete either of the two 4000-level course requirements for the History major.
Proposal and Registration of Independent Studies and Honours Theses
In order to demonstrate to the prospective supervisor both a serious intent to engage in the research and a knowledge at least sufficient to begin work in the field, it is strongly recommended that the student submit the following items to the supervisor in the term preceding enrollment in the Independent Study or Undergraduate thesis. So, for a project beginning in the Fall Semester, the student should complete all of the following by the end of the preceding Spring Semester.
(1) A general introductory bibliography of works to be used that is of sufficient length and quality to demonstrate to the supervisor an elementary research capability in the subject.
(2) A two-page summary or outline of the proposed project, that contains both a thorough description of the proposed study and an outline of the steps by which it will be completed.
Both submissions should be prepared in consultation with the supervisor, who will offer assistance and direction to the student. They must be submitted in a neat, typewritten format. The quality of both will be the basis of the decision to grant or deny permission for the Independent Study. At this stage, upon having read the above document, the student who intends to begin an Independent Study should fill in and sign the form below, thereby indicating that he/she fully understands and accepts the terms set out for an Independent Study in History. In addition, applications to begin an Honours Thesis will be submitted to the Chair and must be approved by the Graduate Education Committee.