What is considered a Honor?

Hello Everyone

I come from Denmark, where we don’t really use honors for college admission, but I have seen that honors play a big part in the college admissions process.
What can I consider an honor.
I have taken two online courses from Stanford and received certificates for it, would that be considered a honor or college work.

Thank you :slight_smile:

Receiving actual college credit is considered more rigorous than receiving a certificate, but you can still put the class on your application. Taking the class for a certificate generally would be considered more along the lines of an extracurricular activity, whereas taking it for college credits would be part of your academic record and you would submit that college transcript (along with that of your high school) to colleges to which you apply.

Honors usually designates a higher level class OR an award won. I am not sure of the context you are asking about. “Honors” can refer to either of those. The certificate you earned could be considered an award.

Did you get professional certification after the class or was the certificate just one of completion? The former would likely be more impressive than the later, but you didn’t mention specifics, and there might be exceptions.

Honor classes for most colleges are a higher level course as noted in post #2. For the California UC’s and Cal states, approved Honors, AP, IB or Dual Enrollment courses get an extra weighting when calculating an applicants GPA.

Since you are from Denmark, your college application will be reviewed in the context of what Danish schools offer. California colleges do not expect you to have access or take “honors” type courses if they are not available to you.

Honors is typically not as challenging as AP but, more challenging than a regular class. My understanding is in order to get the GPA bump, the course must be flagged on this website as an Honors class. You’ll note only CA schools are listed - and I am pretty sure for the CSUs and UCs, only CA students are eligible for the honors bump.


If you are referring to an “honor” related to academics, community service or an extra curricular activity vs a designation for a higher level class, here would be a few examples:

Winner (or some high placement) in XYZ math, science, literature, etc… competition
Award/special recognition in a sport, music, community service. This probably doesn’t exist in Denmark, but in the US there is regional and state level recognition in sports and music.