How to apply to the Honors College

Spring and Fall 2018 Admission to Honors ONLY 

ALL student applicants to the Honors College for Spring 2018 and beyond must submit an on-line Honors Application, a resume or list of activities and accomplishments, AND an Honors Essay of Admission.In order to complete the on-line Honors application, you must first have 1) been admitted to NAU and 2) have your NAU user ID and password. Also, please have your essay and resume ready to submit BEFORE clicking the "Apply to Honors on-line" link below. Documents are accepted in .doc, .docx, and .pdf formats ONLY. A confirmation email is sent to the email you included in the on-line application, and all future correspondence from Honors is directed to that email. 

Admission to Honors is based on an evaluation of the student from a multitude of perspectives. We do take test scores and HS GPA into consideration for new freshmen (minimum transfer college or current NAU GPA required--see below), but that criteria is not exclusively used to admit to Honors. Honors applicants for Fall 2016 average 27 on the ACT and 1182 on the Math and Reading portions of the SAT, and a 3.7 HS Core GPA. There is no deadline to apply to Honors, but we strongly encourage submitting application materials prior to March 1 if you would like to live in our new Honors Residential College (RC)(this date allows us to review and process your application for Honors in enough time in advance of room placement); and May 1 is our priority date to ensure enrollment in our first year Honors seminar. Admission to Honors will continue through the Summer on a space available basis. The new Honors RC is available on a space-available basis. If you wish to live in Honors RC, please secure Honors College Admission in advance of these dates above. For Fall 2017, the Honors RC filled in  April. Also note that application to Honors does not guarantee admission to Honors, nor is application to Honors considered for priority to request the Honors Residential College. Please plan your on-campus housing application submission accordingly.  

Submitting an application for Honors on or before November 13, 2017 will consider you for one of our limited Honors Merit Scholarships. Notification of this award is made in late December 2017. While November 13 has passed, we will consider applications for Honors received between November 14 and when we make final decisions on the award, anticipated the end of November.

Please respond to essay #1 AND EITHER #2 or #3 for consideration of admission into Northern Arizona University’s Honors College.

The length of your formal essays (1000 words minimum combined) should be no fewer than the following number of words TOTAL: 500 words for essay #1; 500 words for essay #2 or #3. Your essays should be structured like an essay for an academic class. It will be evaluated both on your content and ideas as well as on writing conventions such as thesis, supporting evidence, organization, grammar, spelling, parallel construction, style, and mechanics. That said, think outside the box as you consider your response. Don’t follow the expected path; don’t tell us what you think we WANT to hear. Express yourself. Submit BOTH essays in ONE attached document.

1)    Briefly describe a current local, national or international event that has affected your education and its personal and academic significance. In addition, how has your understanding of, or relationship to, that event prepared you for a University Honors education? Be sure to address what you expect to contribute to your Honors education and how you see yourself growing (maturing?) from an Honors education.

2)      Choose a book, movie, T.V series, piece of art, or music album that you have read, watched, or listened to within the past three years that you truly disliked, and provide justification for your selection. Why is this item distasteful to you? Provide detailed and critical justification for your position. This should not be a rant, but a thoughtful, articulate, and supported essay that includes concrete, appropriate, and detailed examples supporting your position. 

3)   You have five minutes to speak with the President of the United States about national policy. What policy change would you suggest he/she implement? Why? Explain and provide examples to support.

A note on our expectations of your  resume: Please consider this an opportunity for you to describe yourself to us in ways BEYOND a record of your employment. What things are you interested in? What makes you tick? What student or community groups or organizations are you a member of? What do you do with your spare time? Did you play club/school sports? Do you volunteer? Where? How often? What LEADERSHIP positions do you have?

Please note that we may request additional information from you to gain a better understanding of you as a student. While test scores, GPAs, and writing samples give us a good picture of applicants' potential, we occasionally need some additional perspective on your abilities. We'll communicate with you if we need a letter of recommendation from someone familiar with your academic abilities prior to an admission decision. 

 Transfer student requirements 

Incoming students to the Honors College are considered "transfer students" when they are transferring 30 or more semester credit hours (earned post-HS graduation) into NAU and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or above. Transfer students must submit an application, resume, and essay for consideration. Transfer transcripts MUST be on file at NAU for consideration.

Current student requirements

If you are not admitted for new or transfer admission, you may apply for the Honors College  after completing 12 credit hours of letter-graded coursework at Northern Arizona University. Current NAU students must submit an application, resume, and essay for consideration. The coursework to be considered for admission must count toward liberal studies and/or toward major or minor requirements.

To be eligible for admission, you must have a cumulative Northern Arizona University grade point average of 3.50 or above.


Please have your Honors College Essay of Admission (prompt above) and resume ready to submit BEFORE clicking the "Apply to Honors on-line" link below. This link is only accessible to prospective Honors students who have first been admitted to NAU. Essays should be submitted in .doc, .docx, or .pdf formats ONLY. Not submitting in one of these three formats WILL delay your admission decision.

Please be sure to attach BOTH essays as ONE document.

Click link below to submit an application. 

Apply to Honors on-line!