CS Departmental Honors - Timeline

This page outlines the steps required to complete the departmental honors track along, with the recommended timeline. Students should pay particular attention to the dates that forms and deliverables must be submitted to the HPD for initial approval. Students who will not be able to meet this timeline for any reason should contact the HPD at askCSHonors@cs.umass.edu as soon as possible.

  • Admission: by the fall semester of your junior year.
    Students who are currently members of the Commonwealth Honors College, have an overall GPA of 3.4 or higher (earned after one fulltime semester of UMass Amherst coursework), and have satisfied the 200-level CS core requirements for their degree type are eligible to apply for the DH track. Eligible students typically apply in the fall of their junior year after finding an advisor. Interested students should consult the admissions page and file an application formNote that all students are conditionally admitted to the DH track pending the submission of their 499Y contract and semester plan.
     
  • Find an Honors Research Advisor: by the fall semester of your junior year.
    A list of CS faculty members currently looking for honors students is available here. Start by talking to CS faculty members that are doing work that might interest you. Send email to faculty you are interested in working with, introduce yourself and tell them about your research interests. Professors that you have taken classes with or have done projects with previously have a better idea about your class performance and research potential, and will probably be more likely to work with you.
     
  • Select a Research Topic and Research Preparation Option: by the fall semester of your junior year.
    Work with your research advisor to outline a project or thesis topic. Also work with your project or thesis advisor to decide how you will satisfy the Research Preparation (499Y) requirement. See the program requirements for more information on research preparation options.
     
    • If you would like to take an individually contracted 499Y with your research advisor, you must work with your research advisor to complete and submit a 499Y semester plan. Your 499Y semester plan should be submitted to the HPD no later than one week before the last day of classes in the fall semester. The HPD will review your semester plan and either forward it to CHC or request any necessary revisions.
       
    • If you would like to take Research Methods - CMPSCI 691DD, you need to submit a short description of your research to the HPD at askCSHonors@cs.umass.edu. The HPD will determine if your proposed research meets the substantial empirical content requirement needed to use 691DD to satisfy the 499Y requirement.
       
  • Take 499Y or 691DD. Submit Thesis/Project Proposal: by the spring semester of your junior year.
    In the spring of your junior year you will either take 499Y or 691DD to satisfy the research preparation component of the Departmental Honors program. During this semester, you will work with your faculty advisor to write a thesis or project proposal. You will also identify a second reader for your thesis or project report. No later than a week before the last day of classes, you will submit your thesis/project proposal to the HPD for approval. The HPD will review your proposal and either forward it to CHC or request any necessary revisions.
     
  • Take CMPSCI 499P or 499T: during the fall semester of your senior year.
    The difference between 499P and 499T is that the outcome of 499P is a research project. You present your research findings through a presentation and submit a project report. The outcome of 499T is a research thesis. No later than a week before the last day of classes, you will submit your thesis or project report to the HPD for approval.  The HPD will review your thesis or project report and either forward it to CHC or request any necessary revisions.