Honors Thesis/Creative Project Guidelines

College of Journalism and Mass Communications Dean's List & Graduating with Distinction

Dean's ListDistinctionHonors Project
Student in cap and gown holding diploma

Gain recognition, increase your distinction and work one-on-one with a faculty in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Dean's List

Each semester the college distributes dean’s list. To be included on the semester dean’s list, a student must have earned at least a 3.7 semester GPA on 12 or more graded hours.

Graduation with Distinction

In recognition of outstanding academic excellence, the College of Journalism and Mass Communications recommends the bachelors degree With Distinction, With High Distinction and With Highest Distinction. All students graduating with distinction must meet the following criteria:

  • Candidates must have completed at least 45 hours at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln by the time of graduation.
  • Eligibility is based on the cumulative grade point average of all credit hours taken at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln prior to the beginning of the term in which the student receives his or her degree.

Any student regardless of whether or not they are in the University Honors program, with a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or above in their penultimate (second to last) semester is eligible to complete a Thesis/Creative Project in the college. The successful completion of a thesis/creative project will increase your distinction level at graduation by one-tier.  Students in the University Honors Program need to complete this process in addition to the University Honors Program requirements.

Cumulative GPA Without Thesis/Creative Project With Thesis/Creative Project
3.5 to 3.79 None Distinction
3.8-3.89 Distinction High Distinction
3.9-3.99 High Distinction Highest Distinction
4.0 Highest Distinction  Highest Distinction

Thesis/Creative Project Process

The thesis/creative process occurs over no less than two semesters. While students may begin the process earlier, it should be started no later than the first 4 weeks of your penultimate (second to last) semester before graduation. Students are encouraged to speak with their academic adviser before pursuing a Thesis/Creative Project.

Professional Project Timeline

Penultimate Semester - 1st 4 weeks

Step 1: Develop Topic Idea & Identify Faculty Adviser/Committee Chair

Identify a topic and a CoJMC faculty member with interest or expertise in the area. Your faculty adviser/committee chair must be a full-time faculty member in the college. Your academic adviser can help you narrow your topic and identify faculty who may be a good fit for your interests. You should contact the faculty member to request their service as your thesis adviser and committee chair. You will work with your adviser to finalize your topic. Your faculty adviser must be a faculty member in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. 

Find Faculty

Step 2: Identify your Committee

The faculty adviser identified in step 1 will serve as your committee chair. You must identify at least 1 and up to 2 additional faculty members to serve on your thesis committee. You should contact your additional committee member(s) to request their service before moving on to step 3.

Step 3: Submit your topic approval form

Submit the topic approval form. The form will be reviewed and approved by your committee and an electronic copy will be returned to you. The finished document will include the permission code required to enroll in the honors thesis course in MyRed.

Submit Topic Approval

Step 4: Enroll in MyRed

Using the permission code in your approved Topic Approval Form, you must enroll in 1 credit hour of ADPR 499H Honors Course or JOUR 499H Honors Course during your penultimate semester in MyRed.

Enroll in MyRed

Penultimate Semester - 2nd 4 weeks

Step 1: Prepare your Thesis Proposal

Working with your faculty adviser, complete the thesis proposal for your thesis/creative project. You should complete the proposal before moving on to step 2, as you will upload the proposal when completing your approval form. You can download a thesis proposal template by clicking the link below. 

Get the Template

Step 2: Submit your Thesis Proposal

After completing your project proposal, submit the thesis proposal for approval. The proposal will be reviewed by your faculty adviser and thesis committee member(s). A grade for your 1-credit hour of ADPR 499H Honors Course or JOUR 499H Honors Course will be entered upon approval of the proposal. A second permission code will be included in the completed proposal approval form. You will use this permission code in the next step. A grade for your 1 credit hour honors course will be entered by the Undergraduate Chair based upon the completion of this document. 

Submit the Thesis Proposal

Step 3: Enroll in MyRed 

Using the permission code in your approved proposal form, you must enroll in 2 credit hours of ADPR 499H Honors Course or JOUR 499H Honors Course in MyRed during your final semester (or the semester following your enrollment in the 1-credit hour course). 

Enroll in MyRed

Penultimate Semester - last 8 weeks to Final Semester - 1st 6 weeks

Work on the Thesis/Creative Project

During this period you will work on and complete your thesis project. Your faculty adviser will be available to assist you during this time. You should stay in contact with them to ensure you are making adequate progress on your project. 

Final Semester - Weeks 7 and 8

Step 1: Schedule your oral defense

At the beginning of week 7, you should schedule your oral defense with your committee members. All committee members must participate in the defense. Your oral defense should be scheduled before the end of week 8 of your final semester to ensure adequate time for your graduation with distinction recommendation to be submitted to the university.

Step 2: Attend your Oral Defense

You should attend your scheduled oral defense and defend your thesis/creative project. Following your oral defense, your Faculty Adviser will submit an oral defense form documenting the completion of your thesis/creative project and making a recommendation on graduation with distinction. You will receive a final copy of the approved form. A grade for your 2 credit hour honors course will be entered by the Undergraduate Chair based upon the completion of this document. 

Your oral defense form should be initiated by your faculty adviser/committee chair.

Submit Oral Defense

Step 3: Get Ready to Graduate

Congratulations! You've completed the honors thesis process. 

Contact Your Adviser with Questions

Andrea Gaghagen portrait

Andrea Gaghagen
Assistant Director of Advising
402-472-3074
agaghagen@unl.edu

Anne McCloskey portrait

Anne McConkey
Academic Adviser
402-472-3034
anne.mcconkey@unl.edu


Bridgett Grant portrait

Bridgett Grant
Academic Adviser
402-472-3034
bgrant2@unl.edu

Karez Hassan portrait

Karez Hassan
Academic Adviser
402-472-9853
karezhassan@unl.edu