Option A:  Senior thesis

Honors in Classics may be earned by eligible students who wish to write a senior thesis with the help of an advisor.  To qualify, students must have an overall, cumulative grade-point average of 3.2 or better, and a grade-point average of 3.6 or better in the major, at the end of their junior year.

At that time, students should complete the Honors Thesis Application Form before the deadline of May 2nd of their junior year.

Click here to download the  Classics Honors Thesis Application.

Important:  If the application is approved, students must register for the Honors Project in the fall and spring of their senior year (8 credits total):

  • in the fall, course number 01:190:495
  • in the spring, course number 01:190:496

It is the student's responsibility to register for the Honors Project.  If you do not register, you will not receive credit.  Please contact your advisor for a special permission number.

An oral defense of the thesis before two faculty members and a public presentation of thesis research are required. Both take place in April of the student's graduation year.


Option B:  Honors without a thesis

Honors in Classics may also be earned by Classics majors who meet the following four criteria:

1. Maintain a 3.5 in the major

2a. Have earned 12 credits at the 300 level or above in Greek OR Latin courses
OR 2b. Have earned 6 credits in BOTH Greek and Latin at the level of 300 or above

3. Submit two papers representative of their work in Classics (they may be revised versions of class papers) which a panel of two faculty members deem worthy of honors using the rubric that we have developed for senior assessment purposes.

4. Sit for a sight translation exam in the spring of senior year and pass with honors

To be eligible for honors without a thesis, the grades in the Greek and Latin courses must be at an average of 3.5 or above; for high honors, 3.7 or above; for highest honors, 3.9 or above.  Highest honors will be reserved for those students who, in addition to meeting the GPA requirement, have performed at the highest level on the sight exam and paper requirement.  Students should inform the undergraduate director by the fall of senior year if they would like to be considered for honors in the major.


Eta Sigma Phi

Zeta Epsilon is the Rutgers branch (chapter) of the national Classics honors society, Eta Sigma Phi.  Each spring, we hold a ceremony to induct students into the society.  To qualify for induction, a student must earn a grade of B or better in a Greek or Latin language course.

The one-time membership fee is $40, payable to the Rutgers Classics department.  To participate, please confirm eligibility with the undergraduate director and send a check or money order for $40 to the Classics department by March 31st.  For more information, please visit the national honor society website:




Jacob Brodhead prize

A prize of $100 from a fund given by Reverend Jacob Brodhead, D.D., and his son J. Romyn Brodhead, LL.D., is awarded annually to a student in her or his junior or senior year who displays all-around excellence in Classics. The winner is determined by a competitive examination within the department that consists of sight translation from either Greek or Latin and an essay on an assigned topic. No dictionary may be used for the translation portion of the exam. This contest is open to all juniors and seniors of Rutgers University, regardless of major or department affiliation.


Cornelison alumnae prize in Classics

A prize of $100, from a fund given by Mrs. Alice L. Cornelison to the Associated Alumnae of Douglass College in 1964, is awarded annually to a student of Douglass College who displays all-around excellence in Classics. The winner is determined by competitive examination within the department that consists of translation from either Greek or Latin and an essay on either Greek or Roman civilization. Dictionaries may be used for the translation portion of the exam, and should be brought to the exam by the student. This contest is open to students of Douglass College of any class.


Ethel S. Cook Travel Grants

The Department of Classics holds an annual competition for scholarships to support travel abroad for programs that specialize in fields covered by Classical studies.  These include Mediterranean archaeology and art history, ancient history, and studies in Greek and Latin literature and documents.  Relevant programs include, but are not limited to, those associated with the American School of Classical Studies in Athens, the American Academy in Rome, College Year in Athens, the Intercollegiate Center in Rome, American Research Center in Sofia (Bulgaria), and archaeological field schools, such as Rutgers University Archaeological Field School in Italy.  Rutgers students with GPA averages of 3.3 or better are eligible.  Applications will be accepted for programs in:  the summer, fall or spring semesters, or for an academic year.  For more information, please go to:

Ethel S. Cook Travel Scholarship Application