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Joining the Honors College

If you have questions about the application, please feel welcome to contact us directly at .

Apply to Washington State University

After you have completed your WSU Application, apply to the Honors College to experience the benefits of small classes and experienced professors in a community of academically talented students like yourself!

  • Review the information below about the Honors College Application and Essays.
  • Prepare your answer to the Essay 1 and Essay 2 and save it as one word document or PDF to submit as part of the online Honors Application and Essay; name it using your last and first names separated by a comma and using upper and lower cases (ex. Smith.Mary).
  • Apply to the Honors College; you will receive an email when your Honors Application and Essays are received.
  • Your application will be reviewed by the Honors Admissions Committee.

Our evaluation of your completed application and essay will be holistic, taking into account:

  • High school GPA and test scores
  • Evaluation of your response to the Honors essay questions

NOTE: If you are a current WSU student or are transferring from another college and have a college GPA of 3.50 or above, please call 509-335-4505 and schedule an appointment with an advisor to talk about joining the Honors College.

The Honors College Application

The first page of the Application and Essays contain fields which you must complete; many fields are required.

The Honors Essays

Personal essays as part of your application to the Honors College at Washington State University help us to get to know you beyond your academic background of grades, test scores, and courses taken in high school. Through your essay we will learn about you, your ability to think critically and creatively, and how you organize and express your thoughts.

Note that there are two parts to the essay. Completion of both parts is required.

Essay 1:

Imagine you are backpacking through a foreign country. Because you want to engage with the local population,  you have brought three items in your backpack  that will help them learn about your culture and worldview. Apart from your smartphone (we know you’ll bring those) what three items have you chosen, and how do they represent these aspects of you?

Essay 2:

At the WSU Honors College, we realize that applicants cannot be reduced to their academic transcripts. We want to know what makes you tick. Pick one activity or experience and explain how it illuminates an important aspect of who you are.

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The individualized attention of the Honors College starts with the application. Your application will be evaluated on its own merits, not compared to others. The application essays are our way to get to know you.




*Generally, a 3.5 cumulative college GPA is required to join the Honors College

Tips for Completing the Honors Essays

  • Compose your responses using a word processing program (e.g. Microsoft Word) and paste your essays, or a pdf of them, into the text box of the online application.
  • When naming the document, please use just your last and first name in this upper/lower-case format only (no other descriptors are necessary): ex., Smith, Mary
  • Both essays should be submitted in one Word or pdf document.
  • Put your first and last names at the top of the essay above Part I.
  • Identify “Essay 1” and “Essay 2.”
  • Read the questions carefully, reflect on them, and prepare the required response.
  • Essay 1 & 2 Length: 400-500 words each
  • Your essays will be evaluated on content (the significance of the ideas you discuss) as well as form (spelling, grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure). Take care when writing your essays; be sure to edit and proofread before you submit. It is an important element of your application to Honors.
  • Make sure that you have actually answered the question. Your essay will also be evaluated on your ability to express your thoughts clearly and think creatively and critically.
  • Remember your audience. Washington State University is an academic community valuing critical thinking, creativity, and thoughtful individual reflection.
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