College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
Political Science

Departmental Honors Exam

Majors who have completed at least 60 hours for a grade at Butler may qualify for Honors, High Honors or Highest Honors in Political Science as follows:

Honors High Honors Highest Honors
3.6 GPA in the Major 3.7 GPA in the Major and either Comprehensive Examination OR Honors Thesis 3.8 GPA in the Major and Comprehensive Examination AND Honors Thesis

The Comprehensive Examination in Political Science (CEPS) is designed to allow the major to demonstrate competency in the discipline through a process of consultation and dialogue with the departmental faculty and other candidates for departmental honors in which:

  1. A Statement of Intent Form must be submitted to the department chair by Tuesday of the first week of December identifying two faculty readers and the three courses from which the main ideas of the student's CEPS will focus and the ideas themselves. This form must be signed by the student and the two faculty involved before being submitted, making consultations between the student and faculty necessary during the month of November.
  2. The candidate selects a common theme that runs through three departmental courses taken with at least two full time faculty and submits a written proposal and outline for a paper focusing on this topic in such a way as to integrate material from each of the three courses, including sustained discussion of at least one major work from each course. Written proposals of one to two pages must be submitted to the department chair by the Monday following Martin Luther King Day.
  3. Candidates will be invited to make an oral presentation of their proposals at a meeting of the departmental faculty and other candidates during the second week of February.
  4. Upon completion of step 2, candidates will write integrative papers as proposed above and further refined through consultation dialogue. Papers should be 8 to 12 pages in length, double-spaced, using font size 11 or 12 and standard documentation of citations. Three faculty will read and evaluate each paper and assign an "H" for honors quality work or an "N" for work that does not reflect achievement at the honors level. These papers are due the first week after Spring Break.
  5. Each candidate receiving an "H" for the paper above shall make an oral presentation to the faculty, honors candidates and others interested in attending during the third week after Spring Break.