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The Honors thesis represents the culminating project of your BYU Honors experience. A thesis is not just another research or term paper; it is a much more substantial piece of scholarship completed under the supervision of a faculty advisor and thesis committee. The Honors thesis represents independent, original research or creative work of superior quality that merits publication, presentation, or distribution beyond the campus community. This hallmark of academic excellence should exhibit high standards of quality in its ideas, methodology, accuracy, clarity, reasoning and presentation. The thesis should be the most developed research or creative effort of your undergraduate years.

Honors students typically complete the thesis requirement during their junior and senior years (2-4 semesters) after they have obtained sufficient training in their major to conduct research in a specialized academic field. The thesis process acquaints you firsthand and in depth with the type of scholarly work that characterizes the field you intend to pursue professionally. For these reasons, only under rare circumstances is an Honors thesis topic outside the major area approved. (In most cases, students who complete a thesis outside the major do so in a field cognate to their majors or in a minor.)

Many students report that writing their Honors thesis proved both the most rigorous and the most rewarding academic experience of their college years. Students learn to develop proficient research and rhetorical skills within their discipline while enhancing their academic or professional credentials and making an original contribution to their field.


Prerequisites: Approved Honors Thesis Prospectus

GE Credit: Together with HONRS 320, this course is certified to meet the University GE Advanced Writing & Oral Communication requirement.

While students are actively engaged in the research and writing stages of their thesis, they enroll and complete at least 3.0 and up to 6.0 credits of HONRS 499R, working under the direction of their thesis advisor. This is a variable credit (1-6 credits), independent, pass/fail course, and requires an approved thesis proposal prior to registration. Students receive a “T” (temporary) grade until after they have successfully defended their thesis (grade changes to a Pass) or have graduated without completing the thesis (grade changes to a Fail).

Honors Thesis Guidelines

(Click on Each Section for Details)

Benefits of an Honors Thesis

Essential Elements of an Honors Thesis

Creative or Performance Based Projects

People Involved

Thesis Timeline


Steps in the Thesis Process

1. Explore Potential Topics & Research Areas
2. Attend Thesis Workshops
3. Meet with Honors Coordinator
4. Identify a Faculty Thesis Advisor and Faculty Reader
5. Write a Thesis Proposal
6. Research and Write Your Thesis
7. Defending Your Thesis
8. Thesis Poster
9. Culminating Presentations
10. Publishing Your Thesis

Thesis Funding

Thesis Proposal Samples


Accounting Auditing Companies with Poor Internal Control: Examining Audit Fees, Material Weaknesses, and Accounting Firms
The Imposter Phenomenon among Business Students and Its Workplace Implications
Experience Design and Management Diversity and Deliberative Dialogues: Exploring Outcomes of Transformative Experiences for Adolescents
Finance Bridging the Gender Gap in the Financial Services Sector: An Exploration of Why So Few Women Choose to Major in Finance
The Effects of Mergers and Acquisitions on the Short-Term Volatility of Security Prices
Global Supply Chain Management How has Covid-19 Changed the Willingness of Consumers to Participate in Value Co-Creation in Service Industries?
Utah's Inland Port: The Future of Logistics in the Intermountain Region or Gambling with Taxpayer Money?
Human Resource Management A Deeper Look into the Formation of Psychological Contracts: A Process Theory
Racial Empathy Gap in the Workplace: The Existence of and Consequences for Racial Workplace Disparity Through Lack of Empathy
Information Systems Building the Future of Real Estate Through the Blockchain
Crowdsourced Space Rental Web Application
OkWellThen: A Platform to Bring Transparency to Healthcare
Strategic Management Potential Applications of Blockchain Technology as Illustrated through a Sales Leads Business Case


Communication Disorders Using Electropalatography to Analyze Intra-Speaker Variability in German L2 Fricative Production

Engineering & Technology

Chemical Engineering Development and Validation of Molecular Dynamics Simulation for FLiNaK
Civil Engineering Santaquin City Trail Corridor and Right-of-Way Design
Computer Engineering Adaptable ICSHK with Irregular QAM Constellations
Computer Engineering Deep Learning for Acceleration of Spectrally-Sensitive MRI
Electrical Engineering Increasing Isolation Between Closely Spaced Plantar Tx/Rx Antennas
Manufacturing Engineering Novel Methods for Composite Recycling via Pyrolysis
Mechanical Engineering Resolving Pseudosymmetry in y-TiA1 using Cross-Correlation Electron Backscatter Diffraction with Dynamically Simulated Reference Patterns
Mechanical Engineering Development of a Mid-Fidelity Aerodynamics Model of a Blown Wing

Family, Home and Social Science

Anthropology Egalitarian Competition: Ethnography of a Korean Classroom
Anthropology Money Talks: A Survey of Nabataean Coin Iconography
Economics Learning Outcomes, Data Collection, and Analytical Possibilities for Pratham's Hamara Gaon Educational Interventions in India
Economics Where We Come From and Where We Go: The Impact of Country of Origin on Immigrants' Perceptions and Performance in School
Family Life How Maternal Gatekeeping and Media Conflict Affect Media Monitoring in a Co-parental Context
Family Studies How parental sexual passion style relates to communication about sex with children and child-parent disclosure about sexuality
Geography Correlating NDVI to Forest Fires in British Columbia, Canada
Geography Dictators Employing Memorialization in the Human Landscape: A Case Study on Saddam Hussein's Regime, 1979-'03
Global Studies A comparison of the Political, Economic and Cultural Development of Japan and Thailand through Human Development Indexing
History Musical Conquest: The Use of Music in the Spiritual Conquest of the Nahua People
Neuroscience Madness and Independent Thought in Russian Literature
Neuroscience Synthesis of candidate natural Killer T cells ligands utilizing novel tandem Staudinger and aziridine formation reaction
Political Science Modifying Just War Theory: The Use of Special Operations within the Modern Battlefield
Political Science The Stranger at the Door: Immigration and Christian Obligation
Psychology The Effects of Atmospheroc Pollutant Levels on Cognitive Processes from Memory Search Tasks: A Comparison of Two EEG Analytical Methods, Standard ERP Component Analysis and the Whole-Wave Cognitive Spectral Bands Approach to Analysis
Psychology Exploring the Relationship Between Alcohol, Sexual Assault, and Religiosity on College Campuses
Sociology Country-Level Analysis of Differences in Educational Achievement between East and Southeast Asia
Sociology Flood Management in Informal Urban Settlements in Sub-Saharan Africa

Fine Arts and Communications

Advertising On Personal Identity and Persuasive Media
Art History Willing Submission: The Birdcage as a Signifier in Ambrogio Lorenzetti's "Effects of Good Government"
Art Expressing Distance through Architecture
Communications A Gender and Racial Analysis of Broadcast TV Meteorologists
Communications Wretched Little Ones: A Novel
Dance The Ballroom Bonus: A Qualitative and Journalistic Study of the Benefits of Ballroom Dance in Utah Valley Public Schools
Graphic Design Visualizing Cognitive Loads
Media Arts Studies Father of Man: An Exploration of the Afterlife in Cinema
Media Arts Studies Passenger Seat
Music Education K-12 Perceptions of Talking Time in Choir Rehearsal
Music A Fascination With Our Dead: Addressing the Discord Between Modern Music and Museum Culture
Music Sacred Sounds: A Compassionate Listening Guide to Musical Worship


Chinese Marketing and the Impacts of Chinese Culture: A Business Guide for Western Companies From a Macro to Micro Perspective
Classical Studies Telling The Story of a Forgotten Martyr: Step One
Classical Studies Luke as a Redactionist: Mark 14:36 and Luke 22:42
English Redeem Your Empty Bottles Here
English Stuck in Adultus
Interdisciplinary Humanities A Translation of and Reflection on No hay isla feliz
Interdisciplinary Humanities Postmodern and Early Modern Confessions: Derrida's Parergon and Calderon de la Barca's Literary Frames
Japanese A Comparative Analysis of the Japanese Criminal Justice System
Linguistics Accepting Konglish: Emerging Conceptions of Korean Linguistic Identity
Philosophy Coherentism and the Problem of the Plurality: Justifying Religious Belief in the Face of Arbitrariness
Portuguese Pages of the Revolution: Symbolism in Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen's O Nome das Coisas
Spanish The Limitations and Capabilities of Hispanics and Dentists in Imporving Hispanic Oral Health in the U.S.

International Studies

Asian Studies The Southeast Asain Response to Chinese Aggressions in the South China Sea
German Studies The Mosquito and the Rose: Similar Themes in the Writings of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Kobayashi Issa
International Relations Reciprocal Empathy: Reversing Animosity Towards Immigrant Outgroups
International Relations Populism and Political Palimpsest: France's Revolutionary Political Culture

Life Sciences

Bioinformatics Genomewide prediction of jasmonate-related and tissue-specific cis elements and their cognate transcription factors in Nicotiana Attenuata
Bioinformatics Predictors of psychisocial and physiological distress incolorectal cancer patients
Biology Does negative frequency-dependent selection maintain male polymorphism in the livebearing fish Xenophallus umbratilis?
Dietetics Documenting Foodservice Operations at Camp Morrison
Environmental Science Jewelry, Stability, and Gender Equality: Uganda
Exercise Science In vitro characterization of ovarian cancer cell drug resistance to microtubule-disrupting agent FROST450, an experimental therapeutic
Microbiology Exploring Melatonin as a Treatment for Oral Ulcers
Molecular Biology A comparison of the epigenetic marks of Diabetics and Sleep Apnea
Molecular Biology Qualitative Analysis of Caregivers Receiving an Educational Intervention on RHD in Samoa
Nutritional Science College students' report of canned foods being used in their childhood households and their current understandings, perceptions, and usage of such goods
Physiology and Developmental Biology The Effect of Overexpression of IRF5 on B-Cell Inflammatory and Co-Stimulatory Activity
Physiology and Developmental Biology The Effects of Student Emotional Maturity on Their Perception of Test Question Fairness: an fMRI and Focus Group Study
Public Health Epistasis of Alzheimer's Disease
Public Health Occupational Exposures in Relation to Alzheimer's Disease Mortality


Nursing A Descriptive Study of Male Victims of Sexual Assault Seen for a Sexual Assault Forensic Medical Examination

Physical and Mathematical Sciences

Applied Statistics and Analytics Clustering Healthcare Costs by Disease
Computer Science Improving Parkinson's Desease Prediction By Leveraging Disparate Datasets
Computer Science Multi-DDPG Humanoid Control
Geology Analyzing Carbonate Strandplain on Crooked Islands, Bahamas by Implementing Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) Imaging and Core Sampling
Mathematics (ACME) A Statistical and Machine Learning Analysis of Opiate Prescription for Chronic Degenerative Disease and/or Other Pain Syndromes
Mathematics (ACME) Using Group Affinity to Predict Community Formation in Social Networks
Physics Gamma-ray Bursts in Inhomogeneous Interstellar Media
Physics Order in Chaos: An Algorithmic Approach to Flocking Behavior
Statistics Racial and Cultural Differences: Factors associated with Positive and negative views of campus climate