Honors classes at OCC have the same prerequisites as non-Honors versions of the same courses, but offer more interaction with classmates and instructors than is usually possible in large lectures. Classes are designed to help develop strong critical thinking and writing skills sought by top universities.

Honors courses are challenging -- in a good way! Honors instructors enhance basic curriculum requirements of their classes by offering more intensive study than is possible in most non-honors sections. Freedom of inquiry and student discovery are stressed. Honors sections are intended to foster discussion, a mastery of content, critical thinking and analysis. Guest speakers, field trips and comprehensive research (including presentation of results) further enhance most honors sections.

Remember: Honors courses are open to ALL students, whether or not they are enrolled in the Honors Program itself. In addition, prerequisites for honors sections are the same ones that apply to non-honors sections of the same courses. However, completion of or concurrent enrollment in English 100 is strongly recommended as most honors sections include an advanced writing component.

Honors courses at OCC are mostly offered in the fall and spring semesters, though occasionally honors courses may be offered in summer or winter intersession*, either on campus or in connection with a study abroad opportunity. Some honors classes may only be offered in either fall OR spring but not both (e.g., sequential courses such as mathematics or Spanish; or classes that may depend on other factors such as teaching availability). Students may wish to complete some of their honors coursework at other community colleges; we will accept up to 7 units of transferable honors coursework completed at other institutions toward certification and the completion of the OCC Honors Program.

Fall and Spring semesters usually include over 50 sections of Honors classes from among more than 30 subjects. Not every Honors course is offered every semester, so be sure to do a search to find out if the course you're interested in is included in that semester's class schedule. Summer and Intersession Honors offerings are extremely limited

*IMPORTANT: Intersession courses may not transfer to certain universities. Be sure to discuss an intersession choice with your Honors counselor if you have any doubt about its transferability.



To search for a complete list of honors courses in the class schedule:

  1. Click on the "Class Schedule" link on the OCC homepage (you'll see a square box labeled "Class Schedule" below the main banner at the top of the page).
  2. Scroll down in the window to the "​Subject" box and select "<all>"
  3. Then scroll to the "Attributes" box (near the bottom of the window) and select "Honors Course"; then click on the "Search" button​

Orange Coast College currently offer honors courses in 30+ disciplines (subject areas): accounting, anthropology, architecture, art, art history, astronomy, biology, business, counseling, economics, engineering, environmental science, English, film, French, geography, geology, history, humanities, Japanese, library research, mathematics, marine science, marketing,  photography, physics, political science, psychology, public health, sociology, and Spanish. More courses will soon become part of the OCC College Catalog. Watch for new opportunities in coming semesters.

Honors Courses take a variety of forms: Most Honors courses are "stand alone" sections of courses offered in a subject at a particular level; that is, the classroom will be filled with only students studying at an Honors level and receiving Honors credit. Some Honors sections, however, are mixed ("stacked") with non-honors sections of the same course, but the Honors students will receive a separate or an augmented syllabus, may have a separate additional meeting (similar to a lab), and will have additional criteria to meet in order to receive Honors credit for the course.

Methods of Instruction: Honors classes are offered Live (in a classroom), Live Online (synchronous -- requires the student to be present online at designated class times), Hybrid (partially in-person, partially online), and fully Online (asynchronous -- student may choose when to engage with course content on his or her own schedule).