Steps to an Honours degree

Steps toward an Honours degree in SSS

The SSS - Honours degree is a 60-credit degree distinct from the SSS degree program which requires 54 credits. Entry into the SSS - Honours requires a minimum program GPA* of 3.3 and CGPA of 3.0.  Also make sure you have room to use 6 credits of your electives toward your honours thesis course. Here are some steps to consider:

  1. Start planning your honours in at least your U2 year. The first step is to think about what kind of research you would like to do for your honours.  Think about your areas of interest.  Think about professors whose work you find interest. 
  2. Double check you are eligible to enter the honours program (program GPA* of 3.3, CGPA of 3.0, 6 elective credits avialable). 
  3. In the winter semester of your U2 year, your goal should be to find a professor who would be willing to supervise your honours research. Contact and meet with professors during this time.  During the meetings you will try to identify a project that is of mutual interest to you and your supervisor.  Please note that many supervisors conduct field research, which happens over the summer. This means that they are often not available to discuss Honours supervision during that time. But it also means that if you work with one of these Professors and do field work, its possible you may end up doing the bulk of your research in the summer between U2 and U3 years.  For both reasons, it is important to plan your honours in your U2 year, and hopefully have a relationship established with a professor who agrees to supervise you by March / April in the winter of your U2 year.
  4. A supervising professor can come from any Department or Faculty. The key is finding a project and supervisor that allows you to explore aspects of sustainabilty that interest you.  
  5. Once you have identified an honours supervisor (and you meet the minimum GPA requirements), contact your SSS advisor with your program GPA, CGPA, the name of your proposed supervisor, and information on honours project. The SSS advisor simply make sure your project broadly fits under the umbrell of the SSS degree program.
  6. SSS students conduct their honours thesis following the guidelines governing the MSE honours program**. Familiarize yourself with the structure of the program. Your SSS advisor or the MSE advisor will help you enroll in ENVR 495, the honours thesis credits for the SSS program.  To do so, your SSS advisor will email the MSE advisor and inform him/her that you are eligible, and request you be given permission to register in ENVR 495 (this is not a class that meets, just credit you recieve for doing your project).  The deadline for registering in ENVR 495 is first day of classes in Fall of your U3 year.  So you must work on this process during the summer following your U2 and be ready before start of the Fall term.
  7. Once your SSS advisor has emailed the MSE advisor (cc'ing you) to let him/her know that you are eligible to enter the honours program, please submit the completed Honours Research Form (find it here) to the MSE advisor.  Please do this in person so the MSE advisor knows who you are.  The MSE advisor will then provide you permission to register in ENVR 495.
  8. On Minerva, switch to the SSS honours program.
  9. Work on your honours research!  Follow the guidelines of the ENVR 495 course.  You will present your honours research along with other MSE students during the MSE honours symposium.  Your grade in ENVR 495 is your grade for your honours research. 
  10. Note also you are required to achieve a minimum program GPA of 3.3 and CGPA of 3.0 *at graduation* in order to obtain the Honours degree.

 

* Program GPA is your GPA calculated over all courses that are part of your major program. So, in this case, it would be all courses you have taken to fulfill the 54/60-credit SSS program.

** Note that SSS students are not required to take ENVR 401 (as MSE Honours students are).

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