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Honors Tutorial College

Honors Tutorial College Receives Top Rating

The College was rated among the top 20 public university honors programs in the nation
Brian Vadakin | Oct 24, 2014

The Ohio University Honors Tutorial College (HTC) received a top rating in the most recent edition of "A Review of Fifty Public University Honors Programs."

The second edition of the book, published Oct. 8, rated programs on a scale of 3 to 5 mortarboards. The Honors Tutorial College received 4.5 of 5 mortarboards, a rating that places it among the top 20 programs nationally and as the highest-rated honors program in Ohio.

“This is the first time that HTC has been placed among some of the most acclaimed honors programs in the country, including Michigan, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina, Georgia, and Purdue,” HTC Dean Jeremy Webster said. “It is an incredible honor to be listed with these programs, one that will increasingly help us achieve national visibility.”

The comprehensive rating system evaluated curriculum requirements, range and type of honors courses offered, class sizes, adjusted graduation rates, honors housing, ratio of staff to students, prestigious awards, and priority registration.

While many honors programs and colleges have similarities, HTC stands out for one particular reason, said John Willingham, the Review’s editor.

“The key strength is the uniqueness that the tutorial system itself provides to the honors students at Ohio University,” he said. “There are other programs and honors colleges that offer tutorial opportunities, but they are not the centerpieces of those programs.”

Willingham acknowledged that the tutorial system did not fit well into the strict definition used for the “curriculum requirements” rating, leading to HTC receiving 3.5 mortarboards in that section.

In his review of HTC, Willingham noted that, “If we had not applied a very strict rule in this category, a strong argument could be made that the curriculum requirements rating could be 5.”

HTC received scores of 5 of 5 for class size, ratio of staff to students, and adjusted graduation rate. In fact, the six-year graduation rate of 92 percent is 3 percentage points higher than the average of all 50 programs featured in the book.

OHIO President Roderick J. McDavis said, “This recent ranking for our Honors Tutorial College reaffirms our pride in Ohio University’s unique, individually-focused and intellectually rigorous approach to honors education. HTC has been a source of inspired teaching and educational excellence for a long time, and we are very pleased to see it recognized as a nationally competitive honors program and the state’s top honors program.”

Webster also emphasized the role of quality teaching and faculty commitment in the success of the college:

“This rating would not be possible without the hard work of the faculty tutors and directors of studies in each of our programs,” Webster said. “The quality and value that this review identifies in HTC is not primarily the result of the dean's or staff's work; it comes from the work faculty do tutoring, advising, and mentoring our students.”

The review also noted the strengths of Ohio University’s programs in journalism, communications, English, physics, business, and engineering.

This article originally appeared in the Ohio University Compass on Wednesday, Oct. 22, 2014.

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