The Honors Thesis is the capstone achievement of the Ogden Honors College curriculum, and completing one is a culminating experience for fourth year students in their transition to post-graduate life. Based upon the knowledge gained through their coursework, in the Honors Thesis students answer questions and solve problems, and demonstrate their abilities by completing a long-term project with an expert research faculty member.
The Honors Thesis is formally completed over two semesters in the senior year, although students often begin building a body of research and prior relationship with a faculty research mentor long before the senior year, through campus jobs and independent study courses. The Honors Thesis is sometimes our students' first experience with managing a long-term independent project, and Honors College faculty and staff provide extensive support throughout the process.
Honors Thesis students have access to:
- Honors College advising staff able to connect students with undergraduate research opportunities, including an adviser dedicated to assisting students with the Honors Thesis process;
- scholarships that help defray costs incurred by Honors Thesis research; and
- workshops and roundtables for students considering and later conducting thesis research.
An Honors Thesis can be written in any major. A thesis may take a variety of formats — from a traditional scholarly paper to a design portfolio; from a business plan to a performance — but will always include a written component fully explaining the student's research and will be defended before a faculty committee. Thesis research is presented to the LSU community at the annual Ogden Honors College Undergraduate Research Colloquium and is also shared at academic conferences and journals.
Completing the Honors Thesis is a major undergraduate achievement that confers high-level skills to our graduates. It is also a final step in the path to College Honors, one of LSU's highest undergraduate distinctions.