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Joining the Honors Program

Honors Program Guidelines

You may join the Honors Program before or after your first semester at UWEC, either through automatic invitation or through a holistic review process.

Have you received an invitation?

Join our learning community of nearly 800 highly motivated, high-achieving students from every discipline across campus. If you have received an invitation to University Honors, here are your next steps:

STEP 1: Register for an honors welcome session

Register for an Honors Welcome Session prior to attending your orientation advising appointment.

Register now

STEP 2: Accept your invitation to the Honors Program

If you have received our invitation to participate in the University Honors Program and haven't already, accept now! If you have not received an invitation, refer to the information below or contact us at  

Accept now

STEP 3: Sign up for an orientation date

Sign up for an orientation date using the button below.

Sign up now

Interested in joining the Honors Program?

You may be admitted to the Honors program before or after your first semester at UWEC. Expand the accordions below to view the pathways to join the Honors Program. Contact us at with any questions.

Two pathways for admission for incoming first-year students for fall:

1.  Fall semester automatic invitations

Many first-semester students are invited to join Honors based on scores achieved on the ACT or SAT and their academic standing in high school. You’ll be invited to join Honors if you have:

  • A 28 or higher ACT composite score (SAT 1300+) and high school class rank in the top 5%*
  • A 29 or higher ACT composite score (SAT 1330+) and high school class rank in the top 10%*
  • A 30 or higher ACT composite score (SAT 1360+) and high school class rank in the top 15%*
    *3.95 GPA if class rank is not available
2.  Fall semester holistic invitations

Many first-semester students are considered for Honors admission through our award-winning holistic review process. Since 2010, between 20 and 42 percent of students invited to join the Honors Program at UWEC have been admitted holistically. Any student, including those who do not submit test scores, may request to be considered for invitation through the holistic process. Most incoming first-year students (fall semester only) who meet at least one of the following criteria will be reviewed:

  • A 26 or higher ACT composite score (SAT 1240+)
  • 3.85 GPA or better 
  • High school class rank in the top 10%
  • Rank 1-5 in high school class

Any new first-year student interested and motivated to participate in University Honors may request to be holistically reviewed for admission for fall.

There are two ways for current students to be admitted to University Honors:

1.  Spring semester automatic invitations

Students who were not invited to join Honors during their first semester at UWEC will receive an invitation to join the program for spring semester if they enrolled in at least 14 credits their first semester at UWEC and meet the following benchmarks:

  • An earned 3.66 GPA or better for both total and residential GPA scores.
  • A 26 or higher ACT composite score (1240+ SAT score)
2.  Petition for Honors admission (2nd or 3rd semester students and transfer students new to honors)

First-year students and transfer students who are highly motivated to do Honors work may petition for admission to Honors. Petitions for Honors Admission are reviewed during three periods annually: June 1 - August 1 and March 1 - April 15 for admission for fall semester and between December 1 and January 1 for spring semester admission. See instructions for the petition process or contact honors staff at for more information.

Students who transfer in good standing from another accredited university’s honors program or college a institutions will be welcome to continue their Honors education at UWEC. Any honors credits earned will count toward UWEC’s Honors Program requirements.

Other transfer students interested in participating in honors may petition for admission. Contact honors staff at for more information.

The Honors orientation for incoming freshmen was where I met folks who would become some of my closest friends, in addition to other students who I had something in common with. I liked always having a friendly place like the Honors office to go to when I needed a place to study or someone to talk to.

Jennifer Barth History + German

Honors & test scores: FAQ

Entering first-year students must submit test scores for automatic admission to the program, but any entering first-year student not submitting test scores may be considered through the holistic admission process (see above for details).

For spring semester admission, the same is true: students must have an ACT or SAT score for an automatic invitation. Interested students without ACT or SAT scores may petition for admission to the program.

Your test scores are not automatically updated for the purpose of Honors admission. If your ACT/SAT score is reported after you have been accepted to UWEC, you will need to inform us that you feel you now qualify for automatic admission to Honors.  

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