College catalog

Dean's List (Full-time and Part-time)
The Vice President for Academic Affairs recognizes superior scholarship through the Dean's List each semester. Each time a student attempts twelve credits, that student is evaluated for the Dean's list and is placed on the Dean's List if his/her GPA is 3.2 or higher for that group of twelve credits. Each group of twelve credits is evaluated sequentially; no carryover of credits is allowed.

Honors at Graduation
Graduating students who have earned a cumulative GPA of 3.2 through 3.699 will be awarded the Associate degree with honors. Those who have earned a cumulative GPA of 3.7 or better will be awarded the Associate degree with high honors.

Phi Theta Kappa
Phi Theta Kappa is an international honor society for community and junior colleges. Its purpose is to recognize and encourage scholarship among associate-degree students. To be eligible for induction, a student must meet the following criteria:

  1. have earned at least 30 credits at HCC (transfer credits and zero-level courses not included)
  2. have a minimum GPA of 3.50 (not counting the current semester)
  3. never have graduated from Holyoke Community College

All students who meet these criteria are invited to join Alpha Xi Omega, the HCC chapter of Phi Theta Kappa. Induction takes place in the fall semester at Honors Convocation. Limited scholarship and transfer benefits are available and members may wear the Phi Theta Kappa gold stole and tassel at commencement. For further information, contact Vanessa Martinez, advisor to Phi Theta Kappa, FROST 270 at (413) 552-2858

Psi Beta
Psi Beta is a national honors society in psychology for community colleges. It is affiliated with the American Psychological Association (APA), the American Psychological Society (APS), and is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies. Membership in Psi Beta requires students to achieve a GPA that puts them in the top 35% of the student body. Completion of at least 3 courses in psychology at the college with at least a B average or better. Students must demonstrate a genuine interest in psychology and high standards in personal behaviors

The Honors Program offers opportunities for intellectual challenge to students in every discipline. For the student who excels academically and plans to transfer to a selective college or university, the Honors Program provides challenging courses with a strong emphasis on reading, writing, and critical thinking across the discipline. The Honors Program offers interdisciplinary Honors Learning Communities (LCs) and Honors colloquia, as well as stand-alone Honors courses in the academic disciplines. Students may also pursue Honors Projects in connection with most HCC courses. Entrance into the program is flexible. Students who score 100 points or above on the English entrance exam will be invited to enroll in Honors ENG 101. Students who earn a B+ or better in any section of ENG 101 will be invited to join an Honors LC. Students who have earned a 3.5 GPA after completing 24 credits (including ENG 102) will be invited to join an Honors Colloquium. Students are not obligated to take Honors ENG 101 in order to take an Honors LC, nor are they required to take the Honors LC in order to enroll in the Honors Colloquium. Students who complete 9 credits of Honors work with a grade of B or better and who achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above may graduate as Commonwealth Honors Scholars. This designation will appear on their transcripts, and will be noted in the Commencement Program. All Honors credits completed at HCC will be accepted as Honors credits at all Massachusetts colleges and universities. For further information, please contact Vanessa Martinez, Honors Program coordinator at (413) 552-2858, or email khicks@hcc.edu.

Honors Learning Communities
Honors Learning Communities are interdisciplinary courses organized around a specific theme and taught by faculty members from different disciplines. The first-year Honors LC integrates ENG 102 and SEM 120, a laboratory science course. Sophomore level LCs vary in their composition. Honors LCs may be worth 6 or 7 credits, depending on the courses they combine.

Honors Colloquia
Honors Colloquia are designed to bring together students from many academic disciplines to consider a theme or issue of current concern from a variety of perspectives. Colloquia are 6-credit multidisciplinary courses that are competatively enrolled and limited to 15 students. Colloquia generally offer field trips and a series of guest speakers. The Honors Program provides Colloquium students with the course's required texts.

Honors Projects
An Honors Project consists of independent work undertaken in addition to the regular requirements of an existing HCC course (ENG 101, 0-level courses and Honors courses excepted). Such work may consist of an extra paper, a paper of greater length or complexity, a research project, or creative work. Students interested in proposing an Honors Project should consult their faculty member, then fill out a proposal form (available in DON 170). The Honors Committee will review all proposals. When a student's proposal has been approved and his/her Project completed, s/he may then register for HON 201, a one-credit course that will bear the Project's title on the student's transcript.

Stand-alone Honors Courses
Each semester faculty may choose to offer Honors sections of existing HCC courses. Honors sections will require students to cover the standard course content, but will also include opportunities for more advanced work as appropriate to the discipline, such as more extensive assigned reading, more complex or frequent writing assignments, and/or increased opportunity for independent research.

Commonwealth Honors Scholar Designation
Students who complete 9 Honors credits at HCC with a grade B or better and who achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.5 or above may graduate as Commonwealth Honors Scholars. At least 6 of the 9 Honors credits must be earned in interdisciplinary courses (LCs or Colloquia). The remaining credits may be earned as Honors Projects or in stand-alone Honors courses.


Holyoke Community College
303 Homestead Ave. Holyoke, MA 01040
(413) 538-7000