Departmental Senior Seminars in Literary Studies and Advanced Projects in Creative Writing: Honors and Works of Distinction Procedures and Timeline
This handout provides a summary of departmental honors and works of distinction procedures for senior seminars in literary studies and advanced projects in creative writing. It also offers a recommended timeline for meeting these goals.
Procedures for honors and works of distinction
- All students submit their work at least one week before the final day of class.
- For those projects that receive an A or an A+, the chair will appoint a second reader.
- The second reader will have no effect on the assignment of an honors or work of distinction
- The second reader reads the final work and participates in a capstone conference with the student and the instructor.
- Students submit their work at least one week before the final day of class. This allows
- sufficient time to identify honors and works of distinction projects and locate second
- a final class meeting to synthesize the capstone experience
- sufficient time to identify honors and works of distinction projects and locate second readers
- In the weeks preceding submission of final projects, the instructor may notify the
chair of promising work so as to begin the process of identifying potential second
readers. Second-reader determinations can also be made as the instructor reads the
- The seminar instructor, the second reader, and the student participate in a capstone conference, ideally sometime between the final day of class and the final day of the semester. In the event of early departures from campus, capstone conferences could be conducted remotely.
Capstone conference rationale and goals
The capstone conference signals to students the degree of respect that the English
Department ascribes to their labors. In this sense, the capstone conference is the
most significant moment in which the department honors the work of our best and most
industrious students. The role of the second reader in this conference is not to suggest
short-term revision (which students will already be engaged in throughout their capstone
seminar) but rather to serve as a sophisticated interlocutor who might help the student
think further about the scholarly and real-world implications of their labors.