The University of Pittsburgh has a distinguished Honors College (PittHonors). PittHonors provides academic challenges, inspires individual effort, encourages self-discovery, and fosters a nurturing community.

In order to graduate with the official PittHonors designation, each admitted student must complete a certain amount of programming with PittHonors. This may include taking special honors courses, completing a research program, and/or attending weekly enrichment programs. All admitted first-year students are required to live in dedicated PittHonors housing; exceptions can be made only by the Dean.

Current students are welcome to apply to PittHonors at the start of sophomore and junior years. Transfer students may apply after they have been enrolled at Pitt for two semesters.

It is also important to note that many PittHonors programs are open to the entire University population. For example, all students are allowed to apply for research fellowships and admission to PittHonors courses, even if they are not official members. Most PittHonors enrichment programs are also open to the entire University community.

Admission Requirements

The mission of PittHonors is to meet the academic and extracurricular needs of the University’s most academically talented, intellectually curious, and socially conscious undergraduate students. While there are no minimum academic requirements for consideration, admission to PittHonors is highly competitive. In recent years, the academic profile of a PittHonors freshman consisted of the following:

  • SAT score of 1493 or ACT composite score of 33
  • ‘A’ average or 4.39 weighted GPA
  • Top 5% class rank (if applicable)
  • Participation in a challenging high school curriculum dominated by AP/IB/Honors courses
  • High level of participation in activities outside of the classroom

Application Process

In addition to submitting all materials required for general admission to the freshman class, PittHonors candidates must submit responses to the following two essay prompts. Responses are limited to no more than 250 words for each essay.

  1. A hallmark of students in PittHonors is intellectual curiosity. Please describe how you have demonstrated intellectual curiosity in the past and how you expect to manifest that intellectual curiosity as a student at the University of Pittsburgh.
  2. An important emphasis of PittHonors is working for the public good. Please describe how you have worked for the public good in the past and how you expect to continue to do so as a student at the University of Pittsburgh and after graduation.

All materials required for general admission to the freshman class and PittHonors essays must be submitted/received no later than:

  • November 1st – PittHonors Priority Consideration Deadline (Candidates will be informed of their PittHonors admission decision on or before December 15)
  • January 15th – PittHonors Regular Consideration Deadline (Candidates will be informed of their PittHonors admission decision on or before March 1)

NOTE: PittHonors consideration maintains deadlines not required in the general admissions process.