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Departmental Honors

The Department of Languages and Cross-Cultural Studies offers Honors in the major for exceptional seniors who wish to achieve special recognition on the transcript and in the graduation program.


To qualify for departmental Honors, the student must:

  • have a cumulative GPA of 3.67 (A-) in the major and overall by the end of the junior year.
  • obtain approval of the project proposal from a qualified faculty sponsor in the department by fall of the senior year.


Plan A

A research paper of approximately 20 pages (typed, double-spaced, 12-point Times, MLA format) in the target language, on a subject related to the major such as literature, cultural studies, history, politics, pedagogy (for teaching majors), linguistics, or any other topic approved by the faculty sponsor. The paper must distinguish itself in the quality of the language (correctness of grammar, syntax, and vocabulary), the scope of the research, and the development of the thesis. The paper is presented to a faculty committee in an oral presentation of approximately 30 minutes in the target language. An annotated bibliography in MLA format is required.

Plan B

A study-abroad portfolio of superior work from a foreign university or from an internship in the foreign country, presented to an Augsburg faculty committee in an oral presentation of approximately 30 minutes (upon return from abroad). The portfolio will consist of:

  • Four short papers in the target language, written while abroad, and approved by the faculty sponsor for inclusion in the portfolio.
  • A written commentary of approximately 10 pages (typed, double-spaced, 12-point Times, MLA format) in the target language, in which the student reflects on the goals, methods, and learning outcomes of the four papers.
  • An annotated bibliography in MLA format related to the topics treated in the four papers.

Plan C

Students with exceptionally high oral skills (as determined by the faculty sponsor) may opt for a creative performance or academic presentation of approximately 45 minutes in the target language. The presentation may involve the use of multimedia technology. An annotated bibliography is required.


  1. In the spring of the junior year, the Honors candidate seeks a faculty sponsor in the department. Faculty sponsors should be full-time members of the department with a specialty in the student’s major. The student must have a clear idea of the project’s topic and purpose to facilitate the prospective advisor’s consideration of the proposal.
  2. After preliminary approval by the faculty sponsor, the candidate submits an extended description of the proposal, including subject, purpose, preliminary bibliography, and the plan to be followed (A, B, or C) by September 15. If acceptable, the faculty sponsor relays the proposal to the department.
  3. If the department approves the proposal, the faculty sponsor seeks two other faculty members to serve on a committee for the reception and evaluation of the project. One member of the committee may come from another department. The final project must be approved by committee consensus.
  4. After successfully completing the requirements, the student provides a copy of the project, in the appropriate format (depending on the plan chosen), to the department.
  5. If desired, the student may take a 4-cr Independent Study (LCS 499, FRE 499, GER 499, or SPA 499) in the spring of the senior year to receive course credit for the project.


Junior Year     

  • Spring: Student identifies faculty sponsor of project proposal.
  • Summer: Student begins preliminary research and organization.

Senior Year

  • September 15: Student presents formal proposal to faculty sponsor for approval.
  • October 1: Department votes on proposal.
  • October-November: If approved, student begins works with faculty sponsor on project.
  • December 1: Preliminary annotated bibliography due.
  • January-February: Student continues working with faculty sponsor on project.
  • February 20: Student delivers first draft of paper (Plans A and B) or detailed outline of presentation (Plan C) to faculty sponsor.
  • March 20: Faculty sponsor approves project for inclusion in graduation program.
  • April 10: All written work due to committee members.
  • End of semester: Student defends project before committee and presents final copy of project to department.