Alpha Sigma Nu
Alpha Sigma Nu, the only honor society permitted to bear the name Jesuit, distinguishes itself from other honor societies in its focus on the whole person. For this reason, academically eligible students are invited to apply to Alpha Sigma Nu in the fall of their junior year, and will be selected on the additional criteria of scholarly passion for their studies beyond the requirements of the classroom, loyalty to the values of the Jesuits through commitment to a deep sense of morality, decency and responsibility, especially as exemplified in service as well as contribution to the community and concern for the welfare of society. Accepted students are honorably inducted by the deans and the university president in the spring semester, who recognize them as outstanding representatives of the holistic value of Jesuit higher education. Notably, student religious preferences is not an aspect of ASN membership.
The Dean of the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences selects the brightest scholars from the Junior Class to be chosen for this honor. Students are selected on the basis of their overall academic performance, recommendations from their departmental faculty, co-curricular initiatives, and their sense of purpose in how they approach their future.
The Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences offers students the opportunity to pursue honors within most academic majors. These departmental honors programs each have their own requirements, but all provide students with a combination of advanced coursework, special seminars, and / or independent research. In many cases, students who are enrolled in these programs will complete a senior thesis or research project. For those students who are members of the A&S Honors Program this thesis may satisfy the senior thesis requirement of that program.
Degree with Honors
Academic honors printed in the Commencement program are based on averages at the end of the second semester senior year.
Starting with the class of 2021, the cumulative average for degrees with honors will be as follows:
- summa cum laude (with the highest honors) — 3.9–4.0
- magna cum laude (with high honors) — 3.8–3.899
- cum laude (with honors) — 3.667–3.799
Prior to the class of 2021: The summa cum laude was awarded to the top 4.5 percent of the graduating class, magna cum laude to the next 9.5 percent, and cum laude to the next 15 percent.
Academic honors are not calculated for graduate students.
Please contact Student Services with questions concerning graduation honors.
A recognition specifically for seniors in the Scholar of the College Program. The prize is awarded at the Scholars Banquet for what is judged by dean's reviewers as the best Scholar of the College projects submitted by an annually announced deadline. Typically McCarthy prizes are awarded in the areas of the Natural Sciences, the Social Sciences, and the Humanities.
Order of the Cross and Crown
The College of Arts and Sciences' honor society for seniors.
Phi Beta Kappa
The most prestigious academic honorary society in the United States.
A designation given at Commencement to exceptional students who have excelled academically in their undergraduate studies and who have done substantial, independent work of the highest quality for a significant part of their senior year, under the supervision of faculty scholars.
Academically distinguished members of the Sophomore Class who have achieved an academic ranking, placing them in the top three percent of their class, are selected by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Most have also received the recognition and nomination of their major departments.
Academic Honors and Awards
Distributed to outstanding graduates at the Commencement ceremony.