Students can enroll in honors classes as long as they meet the prerequisite criteria set by the individual professors. Professors may also choose to admit students based upon experience and other factors.  The ability to take Honors classes while not in the Honors Program is a deliberate choice of design; this provides an elastic structure that enables students who may not have a schedule to complete an entire “honors regimen” to still gain credit beneficial to their transcript. Also, some students will grow into themselves at Columbia State; they may not achieve an honors designation on their entire degree, but their credits will demonstrate their growth.

For those that seek to join the wider honors community and seek an honors-designated degree at Columbia State, they can formally join the program and actively earn 15 honors credits, 25% of the minimum credits required to graduate with an AA, AS, or AAS Degree. Ideally, a student could take between 3 and 6 honors credits per semester; a student could complete the honors requirements for their degree within 3 semesters. Classes with lab components would grant more credits than strictly classroom settings, in continuity with the current Columbia State catalog.

In order to enter the Honors program with the intent of gaining 15 honors credits to earn the degree designation, the student should meet the following requirements or equivalents as agreed upon by the Honors Task Force:

  1. Freshman (first-time, fresh start, or returning after an extended absence) students:
    Students should have at least a 3.25 GPA as a high school junior (or senior, if available) OR an ACT composite score of 25 or greater (SAT equal to or greater than 1220).

  2. Transfer students or established Columbia State students:
    Transfer students or established Columbia State students who have completed at least 12 semester hours are eligible to enroll in Honors courses provided that their cumulative GPA is greater than or equal to 3.25.

  3. Faculty/Instructors:
    Faculty and Instructors who participate in Columbia State Community College Honors Classes are authorized to look beyond the numbers of the GPA and ACT if they know of a student who may not have tested well but had demonstrated a desire to learn at an honors level; the student may be in their honors class (which is open to all students). The Honors Program Leader would be consulted.