Honors Thesis or Project Seminar

The oral defense for an Honors Thesis or Project seminar usually takes the form of an oral presentation to the entire class but may vary by discipline.  The instructor will guide students in the appropriate oral defense style.


Honors Thesis or Project - individually contracted

An oral defense is conducted by the Honors Thesis or Project committee following the conclusion of the student's research. The defense is usually held before final exams to give students time to incorporate suggestions and make final corrections before submitting their final thesis or project manuscript to Commonwealth Honors College. Oral defenses vary by committee, but generally, the student and thesis/project committee members will meet for an hour or so during which time the committee will question the student about:


  • research techniques or creative experience
  • knowledge or skills acquired
  • applications and usefulness of the research results
  • issues for future exploration
  • the student's future goals


The location of the oral defense is negotiated between the student and Honors Thesis/Project committee. At the discretion of the Honors Thesis or Project chair, the oral defense may be restricted to the committee or opened to a broader audience.


The oral defense provides an excellent opportunity for the student to share what has been learned and to receive valuable feedback from invested and knowledgeable reviewers.