Undergraduate Program

Business Honors

Academic Fair
Academic Fair

The Business Honors Program, offered at College Park, offers students with superior academic achievements special opportunities and resources, including the opportunity to participate in cutting-edge research on business issues, and to graduate with honors.

The Business Honors Council provides extra-curricular activities and networking with honors alumni.

Students in the Honors Program take their upper-level BMGT core courses in small, seminar-style honors sections, which allow in-depth exploration of business topics in marketing, finance, management and organization, business law, and policy and strategy. Studying with fellow Honors students challenges you to stretch your capabilities in an intellectually-stimulating classroom environment, and provides excellent preparation for further graduate or professional study. 

The Honors Program provides both a non-thesis and a thesis option—in which students work on an original research project under the supervision of a Smith School faculty member.

Dr. Charles Olson is the Faculty Champion for this program.

Curriculum: 2-3 years (15 credits)

This program offers H-version sections of all required BMGT core classes at the junior and senior level. Honors version sections present the same course content as the regular sections, but involve more rigorous and active participation, intensive writing, and faculty emphasis on critical thinking and reflective learning.

Honors Courses

  • BMGT 340H - Finance (offered fall semester)
  • BMGT 350H - Marketing (offered fall semester)
  • BMGT 364H - Management & Organizational Behavior (offered spring semester)
  • BMGT 380H - Business Law (offered spring semester)
  • BMGT 495H - Business Policies (offered spring semester)
  • BMGT 498H - Honors Study Trip (offered when interest and resources are available)
  • BMGT 493H - Honors Capstone (offered fall semester)
  • BMGT 494H - Thesis (offered spring semester)

BMGT 493H is the capstone course for the Honors Program. Taught using the case-study method, BMGT 493H provides an overview of business research methodologies, and covers special topics in business—including business strategy, business ethics, and corporate responsibility. For both thesis and non-thesis options, students should have completed college core (340H, 350H, 364H, 380H) prior to enrolling in BMGT493H their senior year. Students must complete BMGT493H prior to enrolling in BMGT495H.

Thesis Option: Students completing the thesis option complete a minimum of 9 credits of H-version BMGT core courses from BMGT 340H,BMGT 350H, BMGT 364H, BMGT 380H, or BMGT495H. Plus BMGT493H (Honors Study) and BMGT494H (the Thesis course). Students will conduct in-depth research within their chosen major, which will result in an honors thesis. Students may elect to conduct individual research on a specific topic within their major. They will find a thesis advisor in their major area and register for BMGT494H in their final semester. Alternatively, students may enroll in BMGT494H and participate in a group project, under the supervision of the Business Honors Director. Students pursuing the thesis option will conduct an oral presentation of their research at the end of BMGT494H.

Non-Thesis Option: Students pursuing the non-thesis option complete a total of 15 credits of H-version upper-level courses which must consist of the following courses:

  • 6 credits - BMGT493H Honors Study (Fall of senior year) & BMGT495H Business Policies (Spring of senior year)
  • 6 credits from the following options:
    • BMGT 340H - Finance (Fall of sophomore or junior year)
    • BMGT 350H - Marketing (Fall of sophomore or junior year)
    • BMGT 364H - Management & Organizational Behavior (Spring of sophomore or junior year)
    • BMGT 380H - Business Law (Spring of sophomore or junior year)
  • 3 credits from the following options:
    • Additional 3 credits not completed above from BMGT340H, BMGT350H, BMGT364H, or BMGT380H
    • 300 or 400 level non-BMGT H-version/HONR seminar course (course must be completed under the regular grading option)
    • UNIV348 Federal Semester Seminar (considered an HONR seminar by University Honors)
    • Or QUEST upper-level honors course (e.g. BMGT 490H)

Click here for information on studying abroad while in Business Honors.

Application Eligibility

Admission to the Honors Program is competitive. Students are selected on the basis of the following requirements:

  • Minimum 3.5 cumulative grade point average at University of Maryland, College Park
  • Minimum 45 credit hours earned before applying to the program
  • Students who are in the process of applying to Smith as a transfer may also apply, but admission would be contingent upon admission to Smith
  • Applicants who have already completed two of the BMGT upper level core courses in non-H-version sections have a lower probability of being admitted to the Honors Program
  • Completion of all BMGT pre-requisite courses by the end of semester of application:
    • Accounting I and II – BMGT 220 and 221
    • Statistics – BMGT 230
    • Calculus – MATH 220 or 140
    • Micro- and Macro Economics – ECON 200 and 201

Application Process

Applications to Business Honors for the 2015-2016 academic year  will be accepted through July 27 for a limited number of spots intended for incoming transfer students who have been admitted to the Smith School for Fall 2015.

To apply, applicants will submit the following information via this online application form:  

  • Cover letter showing your reason for applying to Business Honors.
  • Resume.
  • Essay: Submit a written response to one of the following two questions in under 1,000 words:  1)Is it true that “all business is global?" Why or Why Not?  or 2) What is your favorite company? What is it about this company that you believe sets it above its competitors and makes it a great company?
  • Two letters of recommendation - All Honors Program applications require TWO academic recommendations submitted via our online form: http://go.umd.edu/bhonorsrecommend15. These references can come from any college professors or teaching assistants including faculty from outside of the University of Maryland (no relatives, friends, or employers). Ask someone who knows you and your potential to succeed in an upper-level honors program. Letters of recommendation are due July 30, so be sure to give recommenders plenty of time to complete their letters.

Questions? Contact Emily Heavin (edoane@rhsmith.umd.edu).