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The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Student Handbook 2021-2022

5.3 - Graduating with Distinction and Honors

Graduating with Distinction

The with distinction degree designation is conferred by the student’s degree-recommending college. Each college has established unique requirements for graduation with distinction or special distinction. Distinctions are based primarily on the student’s grade point average. Both the transcript and the diploma carry the designation. Contact your academic advisor for specific requirements.

Those graduating with distinction wear a gold hood with their gown. Academic distinction hoods may be purchased for an additional fee when you purchase your gown at Graduation Gear-up or through the University Bookstore in Norman.

Graduating with a 4.0 GPA

Undergraduate students with an overall 4.0 GPA are eligible to receive a 4.0 University medallion on a crimson ribbon. Students must have a 4.0 on all OU work and on any work transferred from other institutions. They may wear the medallion during Commencement and Convocation exercises. In addition, their names will be listed in a special section of the May Commencement program, and they will be invited to attend a special 4.0 University medallion presentation by President Boren.

Students who qualify will be notified by their degree-recommending college. The Graduation Office will provide information regarding the presentation by President Boren. Presentations are held during the spring semester. If students are unable to attend the presentation, they may pick up their medallions in the Graduation Office (Wagner Hall, Suite 203). All 4.0 medallion students are also eligible to wear the gold Academic Distinction hood or the crimson Honors College hood with their gown.

Graduating With Honors Requirements

Honors College acceptance.

To graduate Cum Laude you must complete:

  • Honors Perspectives (HON 2973), 3 hours
  • Honors Colloquium (HON 3993), 3 hours
  • Honors Electives*, 9 hours
  • Honors Reading**, 2 hours
  • Honors Research, 3 hours

*This may include Honors designated courses, OU study abroad programs, and OSLEP, Feaver-MacMinn, Puterbaugh, or Neustadt seminars.

**This requirement is typically waived by your senior capstone, and the exceptions to this rule are based upon major; please contact the Honors College for more information. Some departments require 7 hours of reading/research.

Submit the Honors College graduation form during the first two weeks of the semester you plan to graduate.

  • Submit Honors Thesis (generally, Honors Reading and Research project) to the Honors College office.
  • Maintain OU/HSC retention GPA and combined retention GPA of 3.40 or above.

Undergraduate students completing the Honors College curricular requirements will have a degree designation of:

  • Cum Laude (3.40-3.59)
  • Magna cum Laude (3.60-3.79)
  • Summa cum Laude (3.80-4.00)

Honors College graduates and graduation candidates wear a crimson hood with their gown, which may be purchased for an additional fee when you purchase your cap and gown.

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