Honors Work

Qualified students may work toward a bachelor's degree with honors. Honors students will have to maintain a g.p.a. of at least 3.33 in GWSS or Social Justice course work and a cumulative University of Iowa g.p.a. of at least 3.33. 

In Gender, Women's & Sexuality Studies

Students have the opportunity to graduate with honors in the major. Departmental honors students must maintain a University of Iowa g.p.a. of at least 3.33 and a g.p.a. of at least 3.50 in the major. Students must write an honors thesis that requires two semesters of work during the senior year: fall (thesis research) and spring (thesis writing).

Students who intend to graduate with honors in the major should meet with the GWSS director of undergraduate study before the end of their junior year. They also must select a faculty member to serve as their honors thesis supervisor before they begin their thesis work. The department recommends that students consider faculty members from whom they have taken GWSS courses.

Students have three options for conducting honors research. They can work with a faculty member in GWSS:3990 Independent Readings and Research in Gender, Women's, and Sexuality Studies for 3 s.h.; create an honors contract for a GWSS course numbered 3000 or above taught by the honors thesis supervisor; or complete a graduate readings course or seminar related to their thesis subject.

Students write their honors theses during the spring semester of their senior year in GWSS:4095 Honors Senior Thesis. Although enrolled in this class, honors students work throughout the semester with students in GWSS:4090 Senior Research Seminar. Participation in this class allows them to share their research and writing and participate in the department’s end of the year Senior Research Poster Presentation. Students have the option to enroll in GWSS:4050 Introduction to the Capstone Research Project in the fall semester.

A GWSS student earning honors in more than one major may choose to complete a single thesis that satisfies the honors requirements of both departments. Students must have thesis advisors in both departments, and both advisors must approve the final project.  

In Social Justice

To graduate with honors in social justice, students must complete Capstone Option A.


Course Name


Semester Hours

GWSS:4050 Introduction to the Capstone



GWSS:3990 Independent Readings and Research



GWSS:4090 Senior Research Seminar



For information about honors study at Iowa, contact the University of Iowa Honors Program.