• The Honors Program

    The Great Thinkers,

    Their Great Books,

    The Unparalleled Catholic Intellectual Tradition.

    The Honors Program is based on the close reading and vigorous discussion of a curriculum of "great books" comprising what was aptly described by Matthew Arnold as "The best that has been thought and said." 

    Students in the Philosophy Bachelor’s Degree Program or Literature Bachelor’s Degree Program would benefit greatly from advanced study as students of the Honors Program. Our Honors Program brings students into contact with great works of such writers as Homer, Plato, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bonaventure, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Jefferson, Kant, Marx, St. John Paul II, and others. Both analytical reading and critical discussion in seminar format is the norm for Honors classes to air and give due attention to the ultimate questions of life. 

    The aim of these seminars is truth.
    Together, students and professors seek the truth through the writings of the great authors, examine their errors, and generally delight in the goodness of their mutual pursuit. 

    Thus, guided always by the teaching authority of the Church and the standards of a quality Catholic higher education, classes consider such questions as the nature of man, his place and purpose before God, the universe, and the community of men. We hope that this mutual pursuit will develop a community of scholars within which students will discuss, debate, ponder, write, and thereby, learn in the highest liberal arts tradition. 

    To graduate as an Honors scholar from Franciscan University, a student must successfully complete 32 credit hours of Honors work or the equivalent of eight 4-credit Honors seminars. This requirement is met by taking one 4-credit Honors seminar each semester for 8 semesters at the University. These Honors seminars satisfy the entire humanities and social science core and 4 of 5 courses in the communications core.