Honors Program

Students interested in completing a sustained independent research and writing project may apply to the Honors Program.

NAIS 86 and 87

NAIS 86: Independent Research in NAIS and NAIS 87: Honors Program.  This course sequence entails the writing of a thesis as part of the NAIS Honors Program.


Students seeking admission into NAIS 86 and NAIS 87 must submit a written proposal prior to the end of spring term of their junior year.  To qualify for admission into the NAIS Honors program, students must meet the college minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.00 and must also have at least a 3.33 cumulative grade point average in NAIS courses.  The proposal is submitted to the chair of the department and must be approved by vote of the full-time faculty of the department.  It must include the following components:


  1. an overview of the project that clearly explains your academic plan in some detail, including the subject matter and the essential research question(s) to be investigated.  Thesis projects that take the form of a traditional research paper must be about 100 pages in length (excluding endnotes, bibliography, tables, etc.);
  2. a description of your preparation for undertaking such work; here, your basic goal is to show that you're prepared to undertake a project of this magnitude & have the requisite academic and personal qualifications to do so, working mostly independently (though supervised by a faculty member). Your evidence could include prior coursework; other independent study projects; work experiences, etc. that respond to the points above;
  3. a description of prior research in your proposed research area, including a bibliography of source material (primary and secondary sources) that you have or will consult as part of the research for this project;
  4. identifies your faculty supervisor (you should consult with and confirm the agreement of an NAIS faculty member to serve as your thesis advisor before submitting your proposal);
  5. describe the academic work remaining on your schedule for the coming year to meet graduation requirements; this is to ensure that you'll have the necessary time to devote to your thesis project. This should also include a statement of your plans to reduce your extra-curricular activities to maximize the time available to focus on this major project.  A senior thesis is a huge investment of your time and energy and radically more demanding than most students imagine. 

All Terms: Arrange
This course is open only to majors and double majors by arrangement with the Chair. The course requires the completion of a formal thesis. Please consult the rules for this course as detailed above.

Prerequisite: Native American and Indigenous Studies 85, 86, and permission of the Chair of the department and the faculty member who will be advising the student.

NAIS Department Chair: N. Bruce Duthu