Completion of the IPFW Honors Project and public presentation of it provide capstone educational experiences for IPFW Honors Program students. Engagement with the project offers students who possess initiative, intellectual maturity, and commitment to scholarship the opportunity for a rich educational experience, one in which they will synthesize information learned over the course of their academic careers with independent investigation and thought on a topic of their choice. The honors project may cross disciplines to incorporate other interests and experiences. Work on the project should offer honors students a satisfying intellectual opportunity that will prepare them for graduate or professional study and provide a significant career credential.
The honors project will either produce either a thesis or a creative project reflecting substantial scholarship. All honors projects will include a written component. The completed project will demonstrate students' skills through the accurate and correct use of language, the clear presentation of concepts, and the logical organization and development of ideas. The completed project will also demonstrate how well students apply research and analytical skills appropriate to their chosen discipline and to the undergraduate level of inquiry. The project will move beyond mere summary of current research in a field and will include students' own critical and creative thought.
The honors project should investigate a question that places the topic historically, reviews relevant literature, and arrives in a substantiated way at a conclusion, interpretation, or resolution. The project may take the form of creative work that demonstrates imagination and originality, in addition to craftsmanship and professionalism in production. Public presentation of a creative project should presume a multi-disciplinary audience.
Although the rewards of working in close intellectual contact with faculty mentors and of organizing and completing independent work can be great, honors students should be aware of the demands of the undertaking. Successful completion of a project of value and quality requires a significant expenditure of time and, perhaps, resources.