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:

  • Incoming First Time College Students–via the Common App: University of Utah general admissions application (application open from August to February 1st 2021 with a priority application date of December 1st 2020)
  • Transfer Students–via the University of Utah general admissions application (application open from August to February 1st 2021)
  • 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 2020, they will be notified near the end of December 2020 of their decision).

NEW: The Honors College now accepts incoming student applications for Spring entrance. Spring applications are due by November 1, 2020. Spring applications will not be accepted after this date.

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.


  • Incoming Freshman and Transfer students are encouraged to apply by our priority date of December 1st, 2020 for the Summer or Fall 2021 start. The deadline is February 1st, 2021.
  • Priority Application Date: December 1, 2020 Applicants who submit final application, test scores (NOW OPTIONAL-NOT REQUIRED), and transcripts to the University Admissions Office by this date are reviewed most favorably. (Applications open in August 2020 for Summer and Fall 2021 entrance)
  • Freshman and Transfer students who wish to begin with us in Spring of 2020 must apply by November 1, 2020.
  • Current students are admitted semesterly. Interested applicants should submit their honors essay by the date grades post for the semester prior to the entering semester (e.g. email your honors essay by December 23rd, 2020 if you wish to start Honors in the Spring of 2021)

How to Apply

Incoming first year and transfer students: may apply through the UofU general admissions application. We use the Common App essay prompts. The prompts are provided within the application. Upload essays via the U application. Applicants who submit completed applications, pay application fees (or have them waived through the Office of Admissions), and submit transcripts and test scores (TEST SCORES ARE OPTIONAL-NOT REQUIRED) 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  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 general admission and did not upload an Honors essay, please attach your essays in one single .doc or .pdf to


(submit in one document)


The Honors College at the University of Utah offers the nation’s only Praxis Labs. Honors College Praxis Labs gather students from different majors to collaborate on innovative project-based solutions to big societal challenges. Students in these classes analyze a topic through in-depth classroom and field research such as lectures, panels, one-on-one interviews, readings and off-campus trips. After problems have been identified, students work together to put their solutions and ideas into action in the community.

(In 500 words) Please describe your idea for a Praxis Lab.  You can visit our Praxis Lab webpage to take a look at previous ideas. Tell us what community or social problem you would focus on, why this problem is critical to address, and what role collaboration must play in development of a concrete solution.


 (In 50 words) What is it that interests you about the Liberal Arts and Sciences education (hint: look this term up) offered by the Honors College?

**Please submit both of your responses in one single document.  Uploads must be pdf or doc. files only.

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 December 1, 2020 priority date for Summer or Fall 2021 will be mailed a University of Utah general admissions decision in February.  Accepted, wait-listed and not-accepted students who meet this priority date will find an Honors acceptance emailed mid-January in coordination with the general admissions decisions.

Incoming fall and spring 2021 applications received after the December 1, 2020 priority deadline (up until February 1, 2021 for Fall and Summer entrance) will have decisions released later in spring (pending the release of the general University of Utah admissions decision).

Incoming applications received by the November 1 2020 deadline (for a Spring 2021 start) will receive a decision in December or earlier. Our goal is to notify you as soon as possible.