Great minds think a lot.

As an Honors College student seeking an honors degree, your thesis is the chance for you to showcase your intellectual and creative talents. In many ways, your thesis will represent the culmination of your undergraduate experience at Oregon State University, drawing on all of the skills, knowledge, and insights you’ve acquired. Choose your own subject and think critically about social, creative, and scientific issues. Honors thesis topics range from scientific research to artistic creations to service projects, so there's room for you to explore the subject that excites you the most, even if it isn't in your major.

If all this sounds a bit overwhelming, don't worry. The HC provides you with a useful road map to guide you through each stage as you complete your thesis. Using Thesis Success in Stages (TheSIS) as your guide, you'll break the process down into smaller pieces with clear benchmarks to make your thesis journey much more manageable. These stages are called Stage 1: Plan, Stage 2: Explore & Build, Stage 3: Commit, and Stage 4: Compose & Complete.

Take comfort in knowing that you don't have to go it alone. It's OK to ask for help. In fact, we encourage it. Courses are available to help you at every stage of the process, and you'll be guided by a faculty team that's pulling for your success.

Stage 1: Plan

To be completed within the first three terms of joining the HC

Stage 1: Plan, the first stage, involves learning about the thesis requirement and mapping out personalized goals. This stage offers a framework for thinking about the thesis and possible paths to completion. Complete Stage 1 during your first year in the HC. If you are transferring into the HC, you should complete Stage 1 during your first term or as soon as possible.

Stage 2: Explore & Build

To be completed as indicated on your Thesis plan on file in the HC

The second stage, Explore & Build, requires you to explore your thesis interests and begin your engagement with faculty, with the goal of finding a mentor or making significant strides toward finding your mentor.

Stage 3: Commit

To be completed as indicated on your Thesis plan on file in the HC

In the third stage, you will choose a mentor and work with that mentor to select a topic, develop a research plan, and complete a formal thesis proposal.

Stage 4: Compose & Complete

To be completed as indicated on your Thesis plan on file in the HC

The final stage supports you in the process of actually writing the thesis, including drafting and revising chapters, presenting your thesis research to an audience of non-experts, planning the thesis defense and submitting your approved thesis.