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UC Davis honors programs, courses and societies help students think critically, learn collaboratively and solve real-world problems.

University Honors Program (UHP)

The University Honors Program is a campus-wide honors program for high-achieving, highly motivated students. Offering a residential learning community for freshmen and a specially designed curriculum, small classes, and dedicated faculty, the UHP provides the experience of a liberal arts college during the first two years. In the third and fourth years, UHP students make the most of UC Davis’s status as a major research university by developing research and service skills, and applying them to a capstone project. Students are encouraged to complete capstones in cooperation with departmental honors where possible.

Participation in freshman year is by invitation, with a limited number of spaces becoming available by application. Freshmen may also apply to participate in the second year. For more information, visit or e-mail

Honors in Your Major

Interested in pursuing advanced study within your major? Many of our departments offer major-specific honors programs that can enrich your learning experience and give you even more opportunities to work closely with faculty and other dedicated students. Visit our University Honors Program website to learn more about requirements for applying to these programs.

Honor Societies

UC Davis has a number of student honor societies. These groups are departmental, professional, local and national organizations whose memberships are based on outstanding academic achievement. Just a few of the societies represented at UC Davis are Gamma Sigma Delta, Phi Beta Kappa, Tau Beta Pi, Psi Chi and the Prytanean Society. Many offer scholarships to recognize the most academically deserving students. Our University Honors Program can help you find a society that best fits your interests.

Honors Courses

For exceptionally well-prepared students, honors sections of regular classes provide additional challenges and opportunities to work closely with instructors. One of the greatest benefits of a university education is becoming actively involved in cutting edge research alongside faculty. Honors courses prepare you for such experiences and often integrate research into the course - the Physics 9H series is one such class. If you've passed AP calculus in high school and earned a score of 3 or higher on the AP Calculus exam, consider taking advantage of this intensive three-quarter introduction to topics in modern and classical physics.