The criteria for cum laude shall be a GPA of 3.6 in all UC Denver courses (a minimum of 30 credits for transfer students) and an honors thesis that demonstrates independent research skills. The criteria for magna cum laude shall be a GPA of 3.75 in all UC Denver courses and a superior honors thesis. The criteria for summa cum laude shall be a GPA of 3.9 in all UC Denver courses and a truly exceptional honors thesis. The GPA alone shall serve only as a minimum criterion for each of the three levels of honors. Evaluation of the honors thesis shall be the deciding criterion for the level that is granted. The department expects that the award of summa cum laude would be a rare occurrence reserved for students who demonstrate extraordinary academic promise. Admission to the honors program and the awarding of departmental honors shall be subject to faculty approval.