Lemelson Undergraduate Honors Program

Founded by Professor Robert Lemelson, the Program strives to support the development of research and mentoring partnerships among undergraduate and graduate student anthropologists and faculty. To learn more, visit the Program website here.


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The Lemelson Undergraduate Honors Program provides motivated and dedicated students with (1) opportunities to engage in original research and analysis; (2) mentoring from individual faculty members; (3) interaction with other research-oriented undergraduates; (4) classroom training by UCLA Honors faculty; and (5) development of skills in the writing and oral presentation of anthropological topics. 

The application period for the next Honors class is November 1 to 25, 2013. Informational question and answer sessions take place in mid-to-late October. Department majors and minors are notified directly about the information sessions. Interested students must be of JUNIOR status, that is, primarily those expecting to graduate in Spring or Summer quarters of 2015.   

All application materials are due at the Anthropology Office, 341 Haines Hall, by 3 PM on November 25, 2013. Program applicants will be notified of decisions by December 6, 2013.


Guidelines for Admission


Minimum requirements

* Declared Anthropology Major or Minor (or declared by Winter Quarter)

* Enrolled in upper division Anthropology courses (transfer students who have not had the opportunity to enroll in upper division Anthropology courses may apply)         

* Junior Class Standing (90 or more units)

* Cumulative GPA of 3.0 in all university course work completed

* Cumulative GPA of 3.5 in upper division Anthropology courses or their equivalent


Departmental Selection Process

Entry into the Honors program is competitive. Those selected to join the Honors program typically have a strong academic record and high GPAs (exceeding the minimums above), exposure to anthropological concepts and methods through enrollment in several Anthropology courses before the start of the program, and a promising research proposal. The admissions committee (consisting of the faculty teaching the Honors courses) reviews the proposals and other application materials (see below) and may conduct brief interviews.


Application (Fall Quarter of Junior Year)

The Honors application consists of the following:

* Cover sheet form DOWNLOAD HERE

* Transcripts showing all relevant course work and grades (copies are okay) 

* A 400 – 600 word research proposal (see guidelines below)

* A 5 – 8 page writing sample from a previous course.

* An email or memo from the faculty member in the Department of Anthropology who agrees to serve as primary advisor. If appropriate, a secondary advisor may be based outside of Anthropology; primary advisor must be Anthropology.

* Deadline: November 25 @ 3 PM

* Students should start the process of consulting with potential faculty advisors early in the Fall quarter as this will help the development of the research proposal.


Guidelines and Tips for the Research Proposal

* Clearly state the topic to explore and where this research will be done.  Give a brief indication of what kind of research has already been done on this (or some closely related) topic that will provide the honors committee a context for understanding its anthropological importance. Keep in mind that simple ideas or simple tests of ideas can produce important results; an elaborate theory is not a requisite to do an Honors project. If appropriate, make clear the particular perspective you may bring to the project. This section should constitute the bulk of the proposal.

* Include a plan that outlines the methods the research.   

* Tentative project schedule, to show that it is feasible in the time-frame of Winter Quarter of Junior Year to Winter/Spring Quarter of Senior Year. A high level of detail is not needed at this point. Data collection should conclude by start of Fall Quarter Senior Year. 

* Proposals of fewer than 400 words are likely to be insufficiently detailed to be properly evaluated or accepted. Follow the word limits with care.