Honors programs

Honors College

For more than 50 years, Honors College students have created unique and enriched academic programs in the context of a vast and comprehensive university.

Honors College membership provides:

  • Unparalleled flexibility with standard curricular requirements
  • The opportunity to major in any area or residential college
  • Small honors classes that explore topics in depth and encourage student interaction
  • Comprehensive advising services from both faculty in their major and Honors College staff
  • Significant involvement in faculty-led and independent scholarly and research opportunities
  • Enrollment priority after the first year
  • A vast range of special programs, international study options, cultural and social activities, and community service opportunities


High school students who apply to and are accepted at MSU are invited to join the Honors College if they have a combination of the following:

  • Cumulative grade point averages that place students in the top 5% of students in their graduating class (GPA and strength of schedule is used where rank is not available)
  • a high number of rigorous courses including AP, IB, or dual enrollment appropriate given what the school offers
  • an average 31 ACT composite
  • an average 1400 OLD SAT (CR + M) [concordant to a 1450 NEW SAT (ERW + M)*]
  • leadership activities
  • research interests
  • community service involvement

*For more information about converting old SAT to new SAT scores, please use the College Board Concordance Tables

The Honors College may also request information, such as seventh semester grades, before extending an invitation to membership. More information on the invitation process is available through the Honors College. 

Honors College Fast Facts

  • Honors College is a community of more than 3,000 academically talented undergraduate students
  • A quarter of first-year students are from outside Michigan
  • Two-thirds of graduates participated in undergraduate research
  • Half of graduates studied abroad at least once
  • Nearly all (97 percent) of graduates are placed in graduate school or work
  • 50-65% of HC graduates go directly on to graduate or professional schools

Academic Scholars Program

The Academic Scholars Program, which is limited to 200 students, is open by invitation to high-achieving freshmen who may be interested in joining the Honors College after their first year. High school students who apply to and are accepted at MSU are invited to join if they rank in the top 15 percent of their high school graduating class and have an ACT composite score of at least 28 or an SAT combined score of at least 1240 (critical reading and math sections only). The program also is open to sophomores who are interested in enhancing their academic program.