Senior Honors Thesis

A select number of seniors who have achieved a minimum 3.5 GPA both in the major and overall will be invited by the Arabic department to write a Senior Honors Thesis in the context of a designated upper-level course (3350 and above) or an independent study. The thesis consists of a long research paper (of approximately 50-75 pages in length), written in either Arabic or English, and based on independent research in Arabic sources. This program offers students the opportunity to work closely with a faculty mentor, to engage in critical analysis and scholarly research, and to go through the process of conceiving and completing a major research project.

The following procedures should be followed:

1. Interested students should begin to explore potential topics and identify an appropriate mentor at the end of their Junior year or during the Summer Break before their Senior year. Students are encouraged to speak with their instructors and major advisors as they go through this process.

2. Before the beginning of the Fall semester of their Senior year, interested students should have: 1) a clear research plan; 2) explicit confirmation from a faculty mentor.

3. TWO copies of a Senior Honors Thesis proposal, bibliography in addition to the Declaration Form, should be submitted by the end of Add/Drop period for the Fall semester. One goes to the Department Chair, the other one to the mentor.

4. Students are required to write the thesis in conjunction with a fall course (or independent study) in order to have two semesters to complete the thesis. A grade of IP (in progress) will be recorded for the course (or independent study). After the thesis is completed and successfully submitted, this grade will be retroactively changed to reflect the student’s work.


Established in 2019, a monetary award is given annually to a graduating Arabic major who wrote the best Senior Honors Thesis.