How to Apply

Honors courses are open to students formally admitted to the Honors Program. Designed for talented and self-directed students, the Honors Program’s curriculum complements the Liberal Arts Core and major curricula. Honors sections of LANG 120, Humanities Program courses, and other courses count toward Honors Program requirements to graduate with Distinction as a University Scholar or Recognition as an Honors Scholar.

How to Apply

The application for Fall 2019 admission to the UNC Asheville Honors Program is now available! All students who have been admitted to the university can complete the Fall 2019 Honors Program Application here. We will review these applications on a rolling basis, with applicants notified within a few weeks regarding their decision.

There are three ways to apply to the Honors Program:

Entering as a first-year student in the first semester of college

Many students apply for the Honors Program as high school seniors, upon their acceptance to UNC Asheville. Applicants must also complete in-person or at-a-distance meetings with Honors faculty; more information will be made available to those who complete the online application. The Honors Program does not rely solely on traditional measures of academic achievement in high school (i.e. GPA or standardized test scores); rather, we seek students who distinguish themselves by a passion for authentic learning, willingness to take risks in a scholarly setting, and interest in applying academic skills in a community context. If you care deeply about your studies, we encourage you to apply! For more information about the application process, please contact the Honors Director, Patrick Bahls, at

Entering after one or more semesters of study at UNC Asheville

Students who have completed at least one semester of study at UNC Asheville may join the program provided they have a cumulative UNC Asheville GPA of 3.5 or higher and a letter of recommendation from a UNC Asheville instructor who can speak to the student’s fitness for the Honors Program. Recommendation letters should be emailed directly to the Honors Director, Patrick Bahls, at and to the Honors account at

Note: Typically continuing students are only admitted to the program between terms or during the first two weeks of a given term.

Entering as a transfer student upon acceptance to UNC Asheville

Transfer students who wish to apply to the Honors Program must have an overall GPA of at least 3.5 and two letters of recommendation from instructors at the institution from which they are transferring. Recommendation letters from the instructors should be emailed directly to the Honors Director, Patrick Bahls, at and to the Honors account at

Note: Typically transfer students are only admitted to the program between terms or during the first two weeks of a given term.

The UNC Asheville Honors Program may grant Honors credit for honors coursework taken at other institutions, on a case-by-case basis. The Program also holds memoranda of understanding with several community colleges in North Carolina; these agreements help students obtain honors credit for courses taken in these colleges’ honors programs. Please meet with the Honors Director about getting credit for honors coursework taken elsewhere than UNC Asheville.

Honors Credits for Transfer Students

If you have honors credits from an honors program or honors college at another institution of higher education before transferring to UNC Asheville, you may receive Honors credit at UNCA for this prior work. All such recognition of honors credit is handled on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the Honors Director, Patrick Bahls, at for more information.

Note: The UNC Asheville Honors Program has signed formal memoranda of understanding with the following two-year colleges in North Carolina, guaranteeing recognition of a specific number of credits of honors coursework; please contact Patrick Bahls at for more information on these agreements:

Honors Credits for Study Abroad Courses

Students must come to the Honors Program office before leaving for study abroad and have their names added to the Honors Study Abroad list. Students may receive up to 6 hours of Honors credit for one semester of study abroad coursework or nine hours of Honors credit for a full year of study abroad, provided they take courses at the 300 level or above. Students may receive at most four hours of Honors Special Topics credit (HON 373 or HON 374).

To receive Honors credit, each student must write a reflective essay of three or more pages highlighting some of their experiences and describing ways in which they gained new insights into their selves and other world cultures. Photos from the study abroad experience should be included and formatted as JPEGs. These essays and photos must be submitted to the Honors Program Director and Assistant and are due before the end of the second week of classes after students return. The Honors Program may publish excerpts from student essays and students’ photos on the Honors website.