James Scholar Procedures for College of Media Faculty

Expectations of the professor for completing an Honors Credit Learning Agreement (HCLA) or an honors project as an independent study:

The purpose of the James Scholar program is to allow students to work closely with an accomplished professor. It seeks to reward those students with exceptional academic abilities while recognizing and encouraging their talents.

Faculty Expectations for James Scholars
  • Students are asking to work with you in order to build a more individual relationship with and to learn from you; be prepared to put in extra one-on-one time with this student
  • Students are told that they must complete extraordinary work in a course for it to qualify as an honors course and in most cases, they want to delve deeper into the topic than their peers; be willing to help and encourage them to do so
  • Think “outside the box” when preparing an honors proposal with a student
    • Go beyond assigning an extra reading or paper; expect work fitting of honors students and help them hone their skills
    • Assist them in developing a project based around their coursework that they could add to a portfolio or resume
  • If you cannot find appropriate work in your course, consider an independent study with a student and allow them to help you with any projects or research you may have in progress
    • If you are completing research and would like to work with a James Scholar, please contact the Honors Dean to reach out to interested students
  • If you are working with more than one James Scholar in the same class, try to foster an “Honors community”
    • Consider a group project for your honors students so they can work with one another
    • You may wish to develop a set group Honors project before the start of the semester, so you are able to offer it as an option to James Scholars in your class
Honors Credit Learning Agreement (HCLA) Form Procedures
  • Students who choose to complete an HCLA will first contact the professor that he/she wants to work on an independent study with or the professor who teaches the course in question 
    • The course chosen must be taken for a minimum of three credit hours 
  • Students should be ready to submit a proposal to the professor in which they state the extra work suggested or the project he/she would like to work on
  • The student and the professor should work together to come to an agreement on a clear and approved work proposal
    • Feel free to help them tweak their project, challenge them, or simply direct them into a project you feel would be more beneficial
    • Students should expect to devote approximately 15 additional hours of time to an HCLA project
  • Students will obtain and complete an HCLA form and have the participating professor virtually sign it, indicating approval of the project
    • Students turning a traditional course into an Honors course must include the approved course/project proposal on page 3 of the HCLA form 
      • Forms must be submitted by the student into the James Scholar Box folder by the end of the 3rd week of classes for any 1st or 2nd 8-week course or by the end of the 6th week of classes for a full semester course
      • If the student will be completing an independent study, he/she must also already be approved for and registered in the applicable Independent Study course
        • Forms must be submitted into the James Scholar Box folder by the end of the 3rd week of classes 
        • A course proposal is not required on page 3 as it has already been approved
  • The “end of the 3rd” or “6th week of classes” refers to the Friday of that week, not the Sunday
  • Please note, only students have access to the James Scholar Box folder 
Entering “H” Grades for Traditional Courses
  • During finals week, students will be told to remind their professor that they have been working on an HCLA and an “H” grade will need to be designated when grades are entered for the semester
  • The College of Media’s Honors Dean will also send out a general reminder to all Media professors around the time of grade submission
  • If a student has earned the Honors credit, when entering the grade into “Web for Faculty,” choose the option that includes both the corresponding letter grade and the “H” (ex. AH, B+H)
  • Instructors may decline to grant honors credit if the HCLA project has not been completed satisfactorily
    • It is the sole judgement of the professor as to whether honors credit is to be granted
  • Students must receive at least a B- in the course to receive an “H” grade
  • After grades have rolled, students should check to be sure that they have received an “H” for the appropriate course
  • If an “H” was not designated, students will be told to contact their professor for verification that the Honors work was completed 
    • If the work was completed satisfactorily, the professor should then complete an online grade change through Self-Service/Banner to correct the error
  • When entering Honors grades, if the “H” grade is not an option for a student, please reach out to the College of Media’s Student Records Coordinator or Honors Dean for assistance
  • Please note, in Media’s James Scholar program, independent study and/or research-based courses are Honors projects on their own; no “H grade” is required for these courses