Admission Criteria

The Honors Program Admissions Committee will give priority consideration to applicants based on academic excellence.

Lower Division

Lower Division applicants are generally graduating high school seniors. The Admission criteria to the Lower Division for the 2013-2014 academic year is:

  • 30 ACT composite score or above or
  • 1300 or higher total SAT score (old test) 1950 or higher total SAT score (new test) or
  • Top 10 percent of high school class ranking
  • Admission to Cleveland State University
  • Submission of a written autobiographical essay

Students are expected to complete a college preparatory curriculum in high school. High schools vary in the advanced courses they offer. Honors applicants are expected to complete the most rigorous curriculum available at their high school. Applicants who participate in the Post-Secondary Educational Opportunity Program are expected to have completed the standard high school college preparatory curriculum in addition to their college work.

Preferred applicants will have 4 years of high school English, 4 years of high school mathematics including pre-calculus and in some cases calculus, at least three years of natural science (usually biology, physics and chemistry), at least three years of social science courses, three or more years of a foreign language, with additional classes in the visual or performing arts. There will be students admitted who have not met all of these criteria; however, it should be noted that a student without high school physics, for example, is generally not prepared for a college level course in the subject. Preference in admission to the Honors Program will be given to students whose high school transcript indicates they are prepared for a wide variety of possible college majors.

Upper Division

Upper Division applicants must apply during their sophomore year in college and will be admitted to Cleveland State for their junior year of college. The admission criteria to the Upper Division for the 2013-2014 academic year is:

  • 3.5 GPA or higher on college courses
  • Admission to Cleveland State University
  • Junior level standing by Fall of entry into program (60 semester credit hours completed)
  • Submission of a written autobiographical essay
  • Three letters of academic reference

Preferred applicants will be on track to graduate in two years (for those whose major is in a four year program). College transcripts will reflect a rigorous course of study both in the students preferred major and in his or her choices for general education and elective courses. Students should have made good progress toward completion of general education course requirements and lower division prerequisites for courses in the major.

The Honors Program is both a scholarship program and an academic program. Students who are not prepared to complete the academic requirements for Honors in their major are not eligible to participate in the Program or to receive an Honors Scholarship. The upper division honors program typically requires three to four semesters to complete. To complete the admission process, successful applicants must work with their designated honors faculty advisor to complete an academic plan that will result in their graduation in their chosen major with honors.

Honors without an Honors Scholarship

If an eligible student applies to Honors Program as a rising junior and is NOT awarded an Honors scholarship, the admissions committee can decide to invite the student to participate in Honors without scholarship support. Such a student would receive University honors distinction on their final diploma. To receive honors distinction without scholarship, the student must meet the following criteria:

  • Accept the invitation to participate in Honors.
  • Complete their bachelor's degree with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5
  • Complete the Honors requirements in their major program
  • Complete a University Honors Experience course in each of the semesters during which they participate in the program.

engaged learning
  • Honors Program
Mailing Address
Cleveland State University
2121 Euclid Avenue, MC 412
Cleveland, OH 44115-2214
Campus Location
Main Classroom Building, Room 412
1899 East 22nd Street
Phone: 216.687.5559
Fax: 216.687.5552
Dr. Elizabeth Lehfeldt, Ph.D.
Program Director
Phone: 216.687.5559

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