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Honors students having fun in Circle Park

Benefits of Honors

Being an honors student is more than simply taking difficult classes and participating in a specialized curriculum. Students in the Honors & Scholars programs are members of larger community and culture of honors. In order to enhance the experience of learning and to cultivate scholarship, the programs of Honors & Scholars provide additional supports and priority benefits to our students.


Priority registration allows students to design an ambitious curriculum that includes specialized coursework, international and intercultural learning, undergraduate research, and service-learning. Priority registration permits honors students to register before other undergraduate students on UT’s campus. All honors students must be advised through their college or department and have all holds cleared in order to enjoy this benefit.


Specialized honors advising is available to each honors student in addition to the academic advising offered by colleges and departments. As holistic honors advisors, we regularly talk with students about their adjustment to UT, long-term goals and dreams, involvement, potential career or graduate school paths, and overall student well-being.  Once we get to know you, we tailor recommendations, next-steps, referrals, and opportunities.


To help our students excel in research and scholarship, honors students enjoy the same privileges at Hodges Library as graduate students: they can borrow books for up to sixteen weeks and reserve a carrel, where research materials and books can be held for an extended period of time.


We understand that the library can be a tough place for students to study during exams and crunch times. That’s why we offer honors students an exclusive study space.

Housed in the Howard Baker Center Jr. Center for Public Policy, the Honors and Scholars office provides a student computer lounge as a convenient place to study, hold meetings, or just hang out between classes.

Honors students also have special after-hours access to the building via their VolCard.



First year honors students are invited to join the Honors and Scholars Living and Learning Community. Students in our LLC share extracurricular activities and academic enrichment opportunities. The LLC is available on a first-come, first-served basis:


Honors UTK at Oxford

Biyearly, the Associate Provost and Director of the Honors and Scholars Programs, Dr. Timothy Hulsey, leads an intensive three-week study in residence at Oxford University. Selected students engage in a 3-hour honors course focused on human dilemmas and explore the area through private tours and trips to museums and landmarks. The course is interdisciplinary and team-taught, involving students and faculty from three different university honors programs, as well as Oxford faculty and international experts.

Honors UTK at Cambridge 

The Honors and Scholars Programs sponsor an annual trip to Cambridge University led by Dr. Thomas Heffernan, Kenneth Curry Professor of the Humanities at the University of Tennessee. Selected students receive 6 hours of honors course credit and engage in a 5-week exploration of the culture and history of Cambridge and England. During the program, students stay at the historic Emmanuel College and complement their learning with weekly field trips.

Honors UTK in Costa Rica

The Honors and Scholars Programs offer an annual trip to Costa Rica led by our faculty partners from the Herbert College of Agriculture. Selected students participate in a 3-hour honors course, “Plants, Parks, and People: From the Smokies to San Jose”, with integrated site visits. Throughout the program, student will actively observe and discuss the impacts plants have on society and culture.



Honors & Scholars sponsors events annually for all honors students, including the Fall Fun Fair for incoming students and end of term pancake dinners.

Each honors program also holds their own special events for their cohort of students. These events include academic lectures, cultural events, community service projects, and professional workshops.