The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences recognizes outstanding achievement through Academic Honors, which can be separated into four distinct categories:

College Honors

A student who performs superlatively in course work in the college will be awarded a bachelor’s degree accompanied by the statement “with distinction”. To be eligible for graduation with distinction, a student must have either completed a minimum of 45 semester CU Denver hours in the student’s junior and senior years with a CU cumulative GPA of at least 3.750, or have completed a minimum of 45 semester CU Denver hours in the student’s overall CU Denver career with a CU Cumulative GPA of at least 3.750. A maximum of 6 out of the final 45 CU Denver semester hours may be completed with a grade of P (on P/F option).

Departmental Honors

Departments within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences offer programs through which students can qualify for Latin Honors: cum laudemagna cum laude, or summa cum laude. Determination of the level of honors is made by the major department. Detailed information about specific criteria pertaining to Departmental Honors can be obtained from the individual department.

Dean's List

Every semester, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences publishes a Dean's List, honoring students who demonstrate high scholastic achievement. To be eligible for the Dean's List, students must earn a minimum 3.750 semester grade point average in all CU hours taken during the semester. In addition, students must complete, for letter grades, a minimum of 9 semester hours (6 summer) in structured CLAS courses, excluding independent study, cooperative eduation, and internships. Term GPAs are not rounded up; therefore, a 3.750 or higher is necessary in order to qualify for the Dean's List.

Students who qualify for the CLAS Dean's List will receive notification via email from the CLAS Advising Office approximately 4-6 weeks after the end of the semester. Students who make the Dean's List for Fall and Spring semesters within an academic year may be eligible for the Dean's List scholarship award. The Dean's List honor is noted on the transcript for each applicable semester. Please see the Scholarships page for more details on this award.

Outstanding Undergraduate

Every Commencement (Summer/Fall and Spring) the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences recognizes up to two graduating students (one BA and one BS) by awarding them "Outstanding Undergraduate." This award is merit based. Candidates will submit a written application, including letters of recommendation. Finalists will be interviewed by members of the Academic Standards Committee.

To be eligible, students must:

  1. Apply for graduation on or before census date of the term they are graduating.
  2. Have a 3.80 or higher cumulative CU GPA. Cumulative GPAs are not rounded up.
  3. Have a total of 60 credits or more from CU Denver at the end of the semester that they are scheduled to graduate (Fall/Summer and Spring).