Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.)

The Answers -

  1. How and where do I apply for the Honors Institute?

    You may visit the website and print out the application. Or you may pick up the forms in the office, room 5426. Once the application is complete you may turn it in to:

    Teresa De La Cruz
    Foothill College Honors Institute
    12345 El Monte Rd
    Los Altos, CA 94022

  1. How do I know if I am eligible to join the Honors Institute?

    A student must meet all 3 requirements prior to turning in an application.  The requirements are.
    1. Academic Performance.
      1. For continuing Foothill College students, demonstrate a minimum 3.3 cumulative GPA in 10 or more units completed at Foothill College
      2. For students with less than 10 units completed at Foothill College, provide evidence of one of the following:
        1. Minimum 3.5 cumulative high school GPA; or,
        2. Minimum 3.3 cumulative GPA in 10 or more units completed at another regionally accredited college or university.
    2. Writing Proficiency. Honors courses typically require more writing than non-honors courses. Students are required to demonstrate the potential for successful completion of honors courses by providing evidence of one of the following:
      1. Foothill English Assessment Test results indicating eligibility for Honors ENGL 1AH; or,
      2. Completion of ENGL 1A with a grade of B or better.

    3. Personal Statement.  On a separate sheet, using 150-200 words, please describe your interest in the Foothill College Honors Institute. Your statement should include what you hope to gain from your participation in the program as well as how you believe you will contribute to the program. Because honors courses are typically writing intensive, this statement should reflect appropriate writing skills. Remember that clear writing is the result of clear thinking.

  2. Once in the program, what happens if my cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) falls below 3.30?

    Membership requires cumulative 3.30 GPA, if the GPA falls below 3.30 the student is placed on probationary status as an Honors student during the following quarter.  At the end of the quarter of probation the student will be reinstated to non-probationary status as a full Honors member if the GPA has been raised to 3.30 GPA or higher.

  3. I am not yet eligible to join the Honors Institute. Can I still enroll in an honors class?

    Yes, we are allowing non-honors students to try an honors course.  Stop by the office for more information.

  4. I am still enrolled in ENGL 1A. Can I join the Honors Institute?

    We suggest you begin the application process. You may be permitted to take honors courses the next quarter, however you will not become an official member until you complete ENGL 1A with a B or better.

  5. I completed ESL 26. Can I join the Honors Institute?

    All students must complete ENGL 1A or 1AH or ENGL 1B with a grade of B or better in order to be eligible for the Honors Institute. Students who meet the minimum GPA requirement and who are placed in ENGL 1AH on the Foothill Assessment test are also eligible.

  1. What are the benefits of joining the Honors Institute?
    1. Honors students may receive Priority Registration for fall, winter and spring quarter when including an Honors course in their schedule.

    2. Honors students have Honors Advisors to help with their academic planning and transfer process. The designated Honors counselors are Debra Lew, Cathy Denver and Lily Adams.

    3. Honors students who complete Foothill College Honors Scholar requirements have enhanced transfer and scholarship opportunities at several senior institutions including: UCLA, Whitman College, Mills College, and Pacific University.

    4. Honors courses offer stimulating instructors who are selected for their special interest in working with Honors students. And Honors courses carry an “Honors” notation on transcripts.

    5. Students who complete 7 designated Honors courses with a cumulative GPA of 3.3 earn Honors Scholar distinction. This is recognized with a certificate, honored at graduation, awarded a scholarship (as available), and noted on the transcript. Also, Honors Scholars are eligible for the UCLA Transfer Alliance Program.

  2. Will participating in the Honors program help my chances of transferring to a four-year university?

    Absolutely.  Universities applaud student ambitions and encourage them to aim high. Admissions officers look at your grades first.  Honors courses offer the highest and most demanding level of instruction.  Becoming an Honors Scholar also looks impressive on your resume.

  1. Who can I talk to about the Honors Institute?

    You can speak with the Honors Institute Coordinator who may be reached via email at for appointments to go over general info about the program.

  2. Who are the designated Honors counselors? How may I contact them?

    While Honors students may meet with any Foothill counselors, the Honors Institute is pleased to have counselors who have received specialized training in serving honors students. The designated honors counselors are MaryLou Heslet, Debra Lew, Cathy Denver and Fatima Jinnah. Debra Lew and Cathy Denver are also specialized counselors for the Foothill International Student program. These counselors can provide personal, academic and career support.

  1. What are the Honors courses like?

    Honors courses tend to be more challenging than regular courses.  The expectation of writing skills is higher, and often the workload is greater.  Honors courses often involve advanced critical thinking skills, they are more writing intensive, and there is an added collaboration among the students.

  2. Why aren't honors courses offered during the summer?

    Summer courses condense twelve weeks of instruction into six.  It was determined that adding the rigors of honors studies on top of the already intensive schedule was not in keeping with honors studies philosophy, which is giving students the opportunity to collaborate with other students, time for extra in-depth study and to thoroughly learn the material presented.

  1. Who teaches the honors courses?

    The honors courses are taught by outstanding faculty, who are selected for their special interest in working with Honors students.  See the current Honors class schedule to read the biographies of selected instructors.

  1. Will joining the Honors Institute help my chances of receiving a scholarship?

    Students who complete the Honors Scholar Application (7 honors courses, while maintaining a cumulative GPA of 3.3 or higher) will be awarded a $100 scholarship from Foothill College (as available). Other scholarships are available to certain universities (Pacific University, Whitman College, UCLA).

  1. Are the honors seminars transferable?

    The University of California may grant credit for the one-unit Honors Seminars after you matriculate and have undergone a portfolio review.  Students planning to transfer to a UC should:

    Maintain detailed records of work in the Honors Seminars, and NOT include units earned for seminars when calculating units for U.C. eligibility.
    Honors seminars are transferable to California State Universities.
  2. Are there any guaranteed transfer agreements for Honors students?

    Yes, we have guaranteed transfer agreements for students who successfully complete the Honors Scholar application. Participating universities include: CSU Hayward and San Francisco State.  We have Priority Admission consideration for UC Irvine and Mills College and their Honors programs. And for UCLA , we have a program called TAP (Transfer Alliance Program), which also give priority admission consideration to eligible Honors Scholars.

  3. I am not planning to transfer. Can I still join the Honors Institute?

    The Honors Institute welcomes all students who meet the minimum eligibility requirements.

Top of page

Honors Program

Office Hours
M-F 7am-2:30pm
Closed Feb. 17-20

Online Forms
Application (Word)
Try An Honors App (Word)
Honors Scholars (Word)
Counseling Verification (Word)
UCLA TAP Certification Form Checklist (PDF)
UCLA TAP Certification Form Example (PDF)
acrobat imageNote: Most forms
are pdf format.