Admission Process

The Honors College seeks intellectually curious students who are concerned with the world around them. The Honors Curriculum and Community is designed to engage students in a breadth and depth of study culminating in a thesis in the student’s major.

We accept applications from:

*This information will be updated in early August to reflect next year’s dates and timelines

Incoming First Time College Students–via the University of Utah general admissions application (application open from August to February 1st 2019 with a priority application date of November 1st 2018)

Transfer Students–via the University of Utah general admissions application (application open from August to February 1st 2019)

Current UofU Students (freshman, sophomores, and previous transfer students are welcome to apply). Applicants are encouraged to have at least a 3.5 cumulative grade point average at time of application. Current students may apply at any time. Notifications are sent once grades post for the semester in which the applicant applies (e.g. a UofU sophomore student applies November 2018, they will be notified near the end of December 2018 of their decision).

Why apply?

For more than fifty years, the University of Utah has offered Honors programs. The Honors College Curriculum and Community give students unique opportunities to learn to think critically and to develop excellent communication skills and problem solving skills applicable to any and all fields of study and careers. Special Honors-only opportunities include year-long theory into practice (Praxis) Labs, close work with faculty, and thesis projects grounded in a student’s major. Only students in the Honors College have the opportunity to earn an Honors Bachelor degree from the U of U, the highest degree conferred on an undergraduate.

Liberal Arts and Sciences at the Honors College: Rooted in an interdisciplinary approach to the Humanities, Natural and Social Sciences, and Mathematics, an Honors education aims to contribute to the development of the individual rather than the focus of a specific profession. At the Honors College, we believe that venturing out of your comfort zone is crucial to that individual development. If you are accepted, you’ll take courses in which you encounter complex readings and ideas, and maybe a history role-playing game, that require you to read, think and write in new ways. Your Honors courses will span the Liberal Arts and Sciences, and you will be invited to participate in a diverse range of Praxis Labs addressing current social issues. You’ll be part of a vibrant community that will support you as you work toward completing your Honors degree. Expect stretches of confusion between moments of clarity, knowing that the intellectual struggle from perplexity to understanding can foster some of the deepest learning.


Freshman and Transfer students are encouraged to apply by our priority date of November 1st, 2018 for the Summer or Fall 2019 start. The deadline is February 1st, 2019.

Incoming First Year Applicants

Priority Application Date: November 1, 2018
Applicants who submit final application, test scores, and transcripts to the University Admissions Office by this date are reviewed most favorably. (Applications open in August 2018 for Summer and Fall 2019 entrance)

Final deadline February 1, 2019 (for Summer or Fall 2019 entrance)

How to Apply

Incoming first year and transfer students: may apply through the UofU general admissions application (only Summer or Fall entry submissions accepted). Upload essays via the U application. Applicants who submit completed applications, pay application fees, and submit transcripts and test scores to the University Office of Admissions will be reviewed by the Honors College. For freshman students to be considered for the Honors College priority date, students must submit a complete application (including transcripts and applicable test scores) to the University by the priority deadline.

Current University of Utah students: may apply by submitting an Honors essay response to the prompts (during Fall or Spring semesters) to Please include your university ID number (uNID), full name, and expected graduation date.

*Current students will receive notification of admission status before classes begin for the following semester (Fall applicants notified before Spring, Spring applicants notified before Fall).

**If you experience technical difficulties when uploading your Honors essay to the University of Utah student application or have previously applied to the U for Summer or Fall admission and did not upload an Honors essay, please attach your essays in one single .doc or .pdf to

Entering Fall 2019 Essay Prompts (submit in one document)

In 500 words: Keeping in mind that there are many ways to think about “justice” and a “just society”, what would YOU personally require of a society in order for YOU to consider it “just”? It might be helpful to explain what you believe is “just” or “justice” but please don’t incorporate a dictionary definition in your essay. Take a little risk, and have fun.

Possible strategies:
–Begin with an existing society (American or otherwise) and explain why you consider it a “just society”. Or explain what would have to happen in order for you to consider it a just society.

–Or start from scratch. How would you design a just society? What would its essential qualities be?


In 50 words: We know that applicants to the Honors College are smart, motivated, high-achieving, hard-working students who tend to spend time on community service. Your 500-word essay demonstrates more of your individual academic ability. We’re very impressed! But we’d like to learn something uniquely interesting about you, that likely isn’t true for other applicants. Please give us a hint about what makes you, YOU: a personality quirk, an unexpected interest, an unusual hobby or pursuit, how your earned your nickname, your most embarrassing moment, your wildest dream, the title of your autobiography, why your friends think you’re funny, what you’re doing to get into the Guinness Book of Records, your latest invention? Or?

  • Maximum file size: 2.5MB
  • Acceptable file types: .pdf, .doc, docx, .wps, .txt, .xls, .xlsx, .odt, .html, .rtf, .wpd, .png, .jpg
  • Your file must not be password-protected.
  • Your file must not contain macros.

If you run into any errors within the University application and upload please email the Office of Admissions.

How is my application reviewed?

The Honors College admissions process is highly competitive. During the holistic review process, readers are looking for bright, socially responsible students who show an interest in engaging in our tradition of a liberal arts and sciences curriculum, a breadth and depth of study, and the Honors community. Each application is reviewed by Honors College readers who carefully evaluate applicant’s rigor of coursework, grades, test scores, essays, extracurricular activities, demonstration of intellectual curiosity, and overall fit with Honors mission and goals. Readers consider quality of engagement over sheer quantity, applicant’s self-awareness and reflection on extracurricular involvement, and an application’s authenticity.

How can I track my application?

Those applying to the U can track their application online to see if all the portions have been received.

Check on your application here.

When will I find out my Honors College admissions decision?

First-time Freshman applicants who apply by the November 1, 2018 priority date will be mailed a University of Utah general admissions decision in mid-January. Accepted, waitlisted and not-accepted students who meet this priority date will find an Honors acceptance emailed mid-January in coordination with the general admissions decisions.

All applications received after the November 1, 2018 priority deadline (up until February 1, 2019) will have decisions released later in spring (pending the release of the general University of Utah admissions decision).

Create a My U Page

Current high school students are encouraged to create a My U Page. The My U Page is a great way for students to get more personalized information about the programs and majors they find most interesting. In addition, it offers helpful functions like the application checklist, financial aid and housing checklists, and contact information for each student’s personal admissions counselor.