Undergraduate Honors Program

Physics & Astronomy Honors Students:

  • will have direct mentorship from a professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy
  • learn and apply research techniques
  • develop oral and written scientific presentation skills

Honors Degree Requirements

To graduate with honors, you must:

  • indicate your intent to graduate with Honors in the major by talking to Professor Wayne Polyzou BEFORE the Application for Degree deadline date
  • fulfill the regular requirements for a Physics, Applied Physics, or Astronomy B.S. or B.A. degree
  • open to all Physics, Applied Physics, or Astronomy majors who have and maintain a GPA of at least 3.33
  • complete a research project under the guidance of a faculty member
  • write an honors thesis and give an oral presentation to the faculty
  • participate in a campus scientific poster session (options include the SURF, FURF, or other campus poster sessions)

Steps to Graduating with Honors in the Major 

Project Submission Deadlines

  • Fall semester - November 1
  • Spring semester - April 1
  • Summer semester - September 1

    “After you have the final approval from Prof. Polyzou, the Honors Student Coordinator, Jeanne Mullen, will move your status to “Final Approval” and you will be awarded Honors in Physics or Honors in Astronomy (jeanne-mullen@uiowa.edu).  If you wish to be recognized with Honors at the Convocation and have your name in the Convocation publication, you must already have “Pursuing Honors in the Major” by the deadline for degree application in the semester you plan to graduate.  These dates are typically:

  • First week of June for Summer Graduation
  • Last week of September for Fall Graduation
  • Middle week of February for Spring Graduation”

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I have to be a member of the UI Honors Program to receive Honors in Physics & Astronomy?
A: No. Honors in Physics & Astronomy is available to students who maintain a GPA of 3.33 or higher, complete independent and original research, write an honors thesis and present a short presentation on their work (at the department colloquium, seminar or FURF, SURF poster events).

Q: Where can I find out about the UI Honors Program?
A: See the Joining the Program webpage.

To find out more about the Physics and Astronomy Undergraduate Honors Program, please contact the Honors Advisor:

Honors Advisor
Prof. Wayne Polyzou
306 Van Allen Hall
Phone: (319) 335-1856
Email: polyzou@uiowa.edu