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:
- SSS students conduct their honours thesis following the guidelines governing the BSE honours program**. Familiarize yourself with the structure of the program and consult your SSS Program Advisor if you have any questions.
- 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.
- Double check you are eligible to enter the honours program in consultation with the SSS Program Advisor (program GPA* of 3.3, CGPA of 3.0, 6 elective credits available).
- 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.
- The thesis supervisor for an SSS Honours must be a McGill Faculty Member who conducts interdisciplinary research, and can come from any Department or Faculty. The key is finding a project and supervisor that allows you to explore aspects of sustainability that interest you.
- Once you have identified an honours supervisor (and you meet the minimum GPA requirements), you must complete the Student-Supervisor Agreement Form with your honours supervisor and submit the completed document at least one month before the start of term in which you wish to begin your honours to the michelle.maillet [at] mcgill.ca (subject: Honours%20SSAF) (SSS Program Advisor) and the kathy.roulet [at] mcgill.ca (Bieler School of Environment Program Advisor) in order to receive registration approval for the Honours research classes. Once the registration permit has been issued, you can then register for ENVR 495 in Minerva and update your primary curriculum to declare the Honours program onto your record.
- Work on your honours research! Follow the guidelines of the ENVR 495 course. You will present your honours research along with other BSE students during the BSE honours symposium. Your grade in ENVR 495 is your grade for your honours research.
- 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).