Supervising an Honors Contract

The “Proposal for Honors Credit by Contract” dynamic form is available on the Honors webpage.  In addition, information on completing a contract is available as a second page to the contract and an additional Guidelines for Contracts page is available.

An honors contract is an institutional agreement whereby students can earn honors credit through enrichment of standard, non-honors courses (3-credit minimum). Within a contract arrangement, faculty members work together with individual students to identify the specific requirements of the contract. Payment for directing a contract to completion is $50 per student. A faculty member may supervise a maximum of two contracts per course, not to exceed six per semester.

Typically, an honors contract proposal is submitted and approved by the sixth week of the semester. However, initiating a contract retroactively (e.g., after the course is completed) is possible when an instructor decides that a student's course work is outstanding, far exceeding the course requirements and the work produced by other students. The professor (not the student) must initiate a retroactive honors credit request, and a proposal for honors credit by contract must be submitted to the Honors Program Coordinator.

The contract option does not apply to pre-100 level courses or to College Success Strategies.

The following is from the Honors webpage--

Honors Contracts

A student can enroll in a standard RACC course and arrange with the instructor to complete different or additional work. The individual arrangement with the instructor is written as a contract. Forms needed for the contract can be obtained in room B513 or downloaded here:

Honors contracts are subject to the willingness of individual instructors to participate and to the approval of both the appropriate division chairperson and the Honors Committee.

Procedure for Supervising an Honors Contract

  1. If you are willing to offer the contract option for talented, motivated students who want to explore the course beyond the usual parameters, consider including that option in your syllabus.

  2. Some faculty work with students to develop a very specific proposal.  Other faculty develop a skeleton or template within which students create their own focus.

  3. Meet with the student to discuss the contract proposal. 

  4. Direct the student to draft the proposal and submit it to you for review.  Following the guidelines, help the student edit to submit a document that meets your requirements and that is suitable for the student’s permanent file with the college.

  5. Direct the student to complete the online dynamic form.  You and the student should sign and date the form.

  6. Submit the signed form and the proposal to your Division Assistant Dean.

  7. After the proposal has been signed by the Dean, it should be submitted to the Honors Program Coordinator.

  8. The Coordinator will review, sign and process the Proposal.

  9. When the student has finished the work described in this contract to your satisfaction, you should do the following to ensure that the “Honors” designation is placed after the course title on the student’s transcript:

    • In collaboration with the student, submit either a summary report of the project completion or the culmination project/essay to me as either a paper copy or an electronic file, to B513 or Dr. Pamela A.R. Blakely.
    • Sign the bottom of the proposal form indicating your approval of Honors credit.
    • Copy the signed form and send a copy to me and keep a copy for your records
    • Submit a copy of the signed form and proposal to the Records Office, along with your final grades, at the end of the term.  Do not submit the Contract form before the grades are submitted.
    • Bring the signed contract to the attention of a full-time Records staff person.  Remind that person that the honors designation needs to be entered, along with the course grade.
    • Please advise me if the student does not complete the Honors Contract work.

If the student completes the standard coursework but not the contract work, there should be no penalty to the student.  If necessary – and assuming you’re willing – the contract work can be completed at a later date, preferably within the 30 days typically allowed.  Simply retain the original contract and submit it to the Records Office when the work has been completed.

If you have any questions about this contract process, do not hesitate to call Dr. Pamela A.R. Blakely
610-372-4721 ext. 5452 or email