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Academic Honors

Academic Honors

Academic honors are of three types: university honors, honors in major fields, and dean's list (semester honors). Undergraduate students may qualify for university honors and the dean's list. Honors in major fields are available at the option of the major departments.

University Honors

The university recognizes baccalaureate graduates who have attained exceptional scholastic distinction. To be eligible for such recognition a student must achieve a minimum grade point average of 3.25 for all courses completed at the university and must have earned a minimum of 60 credits from the University of Massachusetts Lowell. A total of nine (9) credits of departmental exam and/or courses graded "S" may be used toward the 60 credits needed to be considered for University Honors.  Credits taken on a Pass/Fail basis may not be counted toward the 60 credit requirement.

Students who transfer into the university will be also be eligible for University Honors if they earned a minimum of 3.0 at their previous institutions, earned a minimum of grade point average of 3.25 for all courses completed at the University and satisfied the University Residency Requirement.

Three levels of distinction are noted at commencement:

Summa Cum Laude3.85 - 4.0
Magna Cum Laude3.500 - 3.849
Cum Laude3.250 - 3.499

University Honors are officially entered on the permanent record of students.

Honors in Major Fields

In addition to honors awarded by the university, honors in major fields may be awarded by the colleges in which students are enrolled or (in the case of Continuing Education students) by the colleges that exercise academic jurisdiction over the program in which they are enrolled. Recommendations for such honors are made by the faculty of the student's major department (or by interdisciplinary committees that exercise academic jurisdiction over the student's major studies) for outstanding achievement in the major field. In order to qualify for such honors, the student must fulfill the following requirements:

  • complete a minimum of 24 credits in the major field at the University of Massachusetts Lowell;
  • fulfill any honors requirement specified by colleges, departments, or interdisciplinary committees in the major field; 
  • achieve a certain grade-point average as specified below.

High Honors

4.00 in all courses that are taken in the major field at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.


3.50 to 3.99 in all courses that are taken in the major field at the University of Massachusetts Lowell with no course grade in such courses less than B.

Honors in the major field are not noted on the permanent records of students.

Dean's List (Semester Honors)

At the end of the fall and spring semesters, the dean of each college issues a list of undergraduate students who have achieved distinguished semester records. The dean's list recognizes students who have completed full-time programs (at least 12 credits of which must have been qualitatively graded) with a minimum GPA of 3.25, no grade less than C, and with no grades of INC [incomplete] (Please note that students who are approved through Disability Services for a reduced course load in accordance with the American Disabilities Act (ADAAA) will be exempt from the 12 credit minimum).

University Honors College

Undergraduate students enrolled in the University Honors College who complete all program requirements graduate as Honors College Scholars.