University Scholars Program Mission

Students performing trust exercises

Vision of Honors Education

Honors Education at the University of Central Arkansas seeks to develop public scholars whose values are shaped by inquiry and exploration; whose deliberate actions are grounded in interdisciplinary understanding; and whose skills as leaders empower them to fulfill their potential to guide change within the university, the community, the state, the nation, and the world.


The core values of the Honors Education at UCA, underlying everything we do, include:

  • Academic and Personal Excellence
  • Inquiry and Exploration
  • Integrity and Social Responsibility
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Interdisciplinary Understanding

Mission of the University Scholars Program

The University Scholars Program identifies highly motivated students, immerses them in a learning community where they can explore their passions, provides them with opportunities to take intellectual risks, and develops them as socially responsible leaders who are ready to take action in their profession and community.


The University Scholars Program has these goals for student development:

  • Social Responsibility–addressing social and environmental challenges and finding ethical solutions, a process that culminates in individual and collective interventions;
  • Expertise–practicing communication and inquiry, a process that culminates in academic research, writing, and oral presentation; and
  • Leadership–engaging as citizen-scholars exercising informed judgment and an ability to collaborate, a process that culminates in the capacity to guide social change for the common good.

Learning Objectives

Social Responsibility Objectives

  • Ethics: The ability to address real-world problems and find ethical solutions for individuals and society.
  • Diversity: The ability to analyze familiar cultural assumptions in the context of the world’s diverse values, traditions, and belief systems as well as to analyze the major ideas, techniques, and processes that inform creative works within different cultural and historical contexts.
  • Personal and Social Responsibility: The ability to take informed and responsible action to address ethical, social, and environmental challenges and evaluate the local and broader consequences of individual and collective interventions.

Expertise Objectives

  • Critical Inquiry: The ability to analyze new problems and situations to formulate informed opinions and conclusions.
  • Information Literacy: The ability to communicate, organize, and synthesize information from diverse and appropriate sources to form a clear and articulate argument.
  • Disciplinary Expertise: The ability to articulate a relevant research or creative agenda, to develop clear research questions or goals, and identify and demonstrate appropriate methodologies in a project of one’s own design.

Leadership Objectives

  • Collaboration: The ability to develop and present ideas logically and effectively in order to enhance collaboration with diverse individuals and groups.
  • Written and Oral Communication: The ability to develop and present ideas logically and effectively in order to enhance communication with diverse individuals and groups.

Guiding Principles

Inclusion Statement

The University Scholars Program upholds that diversity fuels the scholarly advancement of knowledge. In order to foster excellence and prepare culturally competent leaders, we seek to create an environment of inclusiveness and respect for the similarities and differences in our community. Through thoughtful conversation about ethnicity, race, socio-economic class, gender, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, age, and ability, we expand our minds and move beyond raising awareness toward creating sustainable social change.

Leadership Statement

The University Scholars Program provides a constructive forum that fosters the cultivation of knowledge, skills, and behaviors that develop capacity to effectively communicate and interact with others in order to accomplish a goal in a manner that is as free as possible from prejudice and presupposition and that reflects high ethical standards and disciplinary expertise.