Section Menu

Honor Societies and 
Other Types of Academic Recognition

The University recognizes scholarly achievement in a number of ways that are not related to membership in the Honors College; rather, they are open to any student at UTC who meets the specific criteria for that particular level and type of recognition.  These types of recognition include the Dean's List, Graduation (or Latin) honors, and induction into various honor societies.  For information about these types of recognition, you should contact the offices or individuals listed below. 


Dean's List

Selection for the Dean’s List does not require membership in the Honors College, and the word “Dean” in the term “Dean’s List” does not refer to the Dean of the Honors College; rather, it refers to all the deans of the colleges that offer degree programs, since all students regardless of academic major or college, can be named to the Dean’s List, if they meet the academic criteria listed below.

The Dean’s List is compiled each semester by the Records Office to include the names of all students who achieve an institutional semester GPA of at least 3.2 while registered for a minimum of six graded hours for that semester. The list is issued for publication in newspapers and other media outlets by the Office of University Relations. If you wish to have the list made available to your hometown newspaper, you should contact University Relations.


General Honors at Graduation

The University grants graduation honors to students with distinguished academic records.  This type of honors is also known as “Latin honors” because the level of honors is designated with the Latin phrases “cum laude,” “magna cum laude,” or “summa cum laude.”  These designations do not require membership in the Honors College. Latin honors are conferred on the student at graduation based on his or her final cumulative GPA.

To be eligible for “Latin honors," students must have a minimum of 60 earned hours at UTC and present a minimum GPA at the end of the final semester, as described below:

  • cum laude: final cumulative UTC GPA is at least 3.5
  • magna cum laude: final cumulative UTC GPA is at least 3.7
  • summa cum laude: final cumulative UTC GPA is at least 3.9

Graduation honors will be inscribed on the diplomas. Grade point averages are not rounded. These standards apply to all undergraduate degree candidates, regardless of the catalog under which they entered. If you have questions about Latin honors, please contact the Records Office.


Honor Societies

Academic achievement, overall or in specific fields, is recognized by a number of honor societies and departmental organizations. Most are UTC branch chapters of national organizations, and each has its own faculty or staff advisor. For more information about a particular organization, please contact the advisor listed below.

If you have questions about whether an organization is a legitimate honor society, see the website of the Association of College Honor Societies. That organization’s website has a directory of legitimate organizations, provides advice about criteria for honor societies, and posts alerts about recent scams.


UTC Honor Societies open to students in any academic discipline:

  • Alpha Society, a scholastic honor society specific to The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga only.  Alpha Society elects to membership seniors who have maintained a very high scholastic average (3.75 or higher). Election is by vote of the faculty members of Alpha. For more information, contact the current President, Sandy Cole.
  • Alpha Lambda Delta, national honor society for freshmen women and men, elects to membership those freshmen who have a 3.5 institutional cumulative average on at least 12 graded hours in the first semester or an institutional cumulative average of 3.5 at the end of the freshman year. Advisor: Jean Dake.
  • Golden Key, is a national honor society for all juniors and seniors, either full or part time, who have been at UTC for one year and who have maintained at least a 3.3 institutional cumulative grade point average. Advisor: Jim Hicks.
  • Mortar Board, a national honor society for senior women and men, elects to membership those who at the end of their junior year have a minimum institutional cumulative grade point average of 3.0 and who have demonstrated outstanding ability in leadership, scholarship, and service to the University. Advisors: Debbie Bell and Melissa Burchfield.
  • National Society of Collegiate Scholars, a national honor society for freshman and sophomore students with at least a 3.4 cumulative grade point average. Advisor: Aaron Shaheen
  • Phi Eta Sigma, national honor society for freshmen men and women, elects to membership those freshmen who have a 3.5 institutional cumulative average on at least 12 graded hours in the first semester or an institutional cumulative average of 3.5 at the end of the freshman year. Advisor: Jean Dake.

Honor Societies in specific academic areas:

For information on honor societies not listed here, contact the Student Development Office.

©