How to Become a Phi Beta Kappa in College

The Phi Beta Kappa Society is the nation's oldest and most prestigious undergraduate honors organization. It was founded in 1776 and since that time it has become the most well known of all college honors societies. Its aim is to honor academic excellence in the liberal arts and sciences. It is the honors society that is unique to the College of Arts and Sciences, committed to honoring outstanding erudite achievement.

Steps

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    Choose a non-professional major in the arts, humanities, social sciences, or sciences. Professional majors include business, education, engineering, architecture, health, and pre-med. Check with an advisor if you're not sure.
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    Complete at least 90 college credits (usually about three years) with a 3.75 cumulative GPA.
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    Complete at least one foreign language course at the second level. This requirement may be waived for native speakers, those who have passed a placement exam, or those with advanced placement credit in a foreign language.
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    Complete at least 100 credits in liberal arts and science courses or 80% of total credits.
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    Wait to be nominated by a faculty member. Members of Phi Beta Kappa are generally nominated around graduation time, and receive notification by mail of membership in the honors society.

Tips

  • Although Phi Beta Kappa is the most well known of all honors organizations, membership is not just a matter of self esteem, an item for a resume, or a mention in job interviews. It implies a lifelong commitment to using one's learning for the benefit of others. It also represents membership in a community of scholars, "a fellowship of learners rather than of the learned."

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Categories: Campus Life