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Undergraduate Honors Seminars

Steinhardt Dean's Global Honors Seminars are one of the signatures features of our 4-year Steinhardt Honors Program.

Seminars combine a semester-long class with a 7-10 day international research-travel component, providing students with the opportunity to integrate a global perspective into the study of an interdisciplinary, liberal arts-based topic. Fall semester seminars include January research and travel, and Spring semester seminars include research and travel during spring break. These 4-credit courses are open to honors first-year students and sophomores with qualifying GPAs in all Steinhardt majors. Courses may satisfy CORE or other requirements for Steinhardt students, as noted on individual program pages.

Daily activities during the research-travel component may include data collection, interviews, lectures, discussions, site visits, and cultural activities. For Fall courses, final course assignments are due after research-travel in January. For Spring courses, the seminar continues to meet after spring break and incorporates the international learning experience into the continued seminar.

Each seminar is limited to approximately 20 students for pedagogical, safety, and travel-logistical reasons.

As an honors activity, NYU Steinhardt funds almost all of the travel expenses, minus a non-refundable $400 program deposit. Students for whom travel-related costs would be financially prohibitive should write an appeal for aid to the Steinhardt Office of the Associate Dean of Students. The School intends the seminars to be open to high achieving students regardless of financial need.

Fall 2020

Families, Schools, and Child Development

Examination of the complex relationships between family & school systems, with a special focus on low-income urban communities as they relate to child development. Topics explore the roles culture, immigration, & racial/ethnic diversity play in establishing effective partnerships between families & schools.

Biodiversity and the Earth System

This course will take you on a journey of exploration that challenges the assumptions you have about the Earth and Life. You will learn to use the tools of science, inquiry and investigation while exploring the urban environment of New York City and biodiversity and extinction in London and Lyme Regis.

Spring 2021

The Global Music Industry: Popular Music, Culture and Society

This course explores the role of New York and London as gateways to music genres from around the world.

Visual Cultures of the Modern and Global City

This course examines visual culture of the city, from the dynamics of visuality in the nineteenth-century modern cityscape to the mega cities of globalization. New York City and Paris will be the primary case studies.


Eligible candidates for global honors seminars are Steinhardt incoming freshman or rising sophomores. You must have a Steinhardt cumulative grade point average of 3.5 or higher and demonstrate a record of leadership, community engagement, and service. 

Students may participate in only one global honors seminar during their degree.

How to Apply

The application will be sent to eligible students each spring for the upcoming academic year.

The application contains one short-answer essay: Please explain your interest in your top selection for the global honors seminar.

Please note, the application process only applies to rising sophomores and not incoming freshman scholar students. There will be a separate process for incoming freshmen.


Students selected for the seminar are expected to enroll in and satisfactorily complete the requirements of the semester-long course associated with their specific seminar, as well as the travel component.

Students are required to participate in the round-trip travel to and from their program destination, as arranged by Steinhardt. Students are not allowed to purchase an individualized travel itinerary.

When admitted to one of the seminars, we will notify you of the deadline to pay the $400 program deposit. You must pay this deposit by the deadline provided or you will forfeit your place. If you need an extension of the deadline to pay the deposit, please request it in writing to

Students are responsible for obtaining any necessary visa or immunizations that are required for their program destination. The NYU Health Center will advise on required and recommended immunizations and other healthcare precautions, and students should also consult with their personal healthcare providers on overall mental and physical wellness to ensure readiness for international travel.

All offers of admission and each student's participation in this course are contingent on his or her maintaining a minimum 3.5 cumulative grade-point average. All GPAs will be reviewed after Spring grades are entered on NYU transcripts.  

Late withdrawals will be required to cover the entire travel cost that NYU would have covered. This policy is in place to guarantee as many students as possible are given the opportunity to participate and all program spaces are filled.