Departmental Honors in Nursing

Select students are invited to apply for the Departmental Honors in Nursing after their first semester of nursing.

What is Departmental Honors in Nursing?

Honors Students
Our first Honors Graduates: Kyle Bateman (third from left) and Meredith Davis (fourth from left). Also pictured are from left, Dr. Debra Davis - Dean, Dr. Linda Roussel and Dr. Ellen Buckner.

Hello Baccalaureate Nursing Students! It is our pleasure to welcome you to the Departmental Honors in Nursing Webpage! This page is for current BSN students, pre-nursing students anticipating application to nursing, and for students enrolled in the Honors College.

Perhaps you are asking, “What is Honors in Nursing?” Many students are aware that the University of South Alabama has a Honors College. If you are an excellent student with a desire to seek challenges, Nursing Honors could be right for you!

Select students are invited to apply for the Departmental Honors in Nursing in their first semester of nursing. Students may come from the Honors College or they may meet criteria of excellence in pre-nursing and beginning nursing courses. There will be an informational orientation session prior to applying so students can learn more about the program and what is expected. In addition pre-nursing students may enroll in a special topics course that allows them to shadow a nurse in practice and/or begin participation in honors eligible experiences.  Current pre-nursing or nursing students should contact Dr. Alice Younce, Departmental Honors in Nursing Coordinator, ayounce@southalabama.edu for information.

The Honors curriculum is individualized and based on three possible models—undergraduate research, service-learning, or study abroad. Faculty members serve as mentors and assist students to identify appropriate thesis ideas and develop their plans in the process of developing a project. A final senior thesis is part of the requirement to graduate “with Honors in Nursing.” Students have made presentations of their work to the National Student Nurse Association (NSNA) and Sigma Theta Tau International, the Honor Society of Nursing (STTI).

USA Departmental Honors in Nursing students have completed research in topics such as

  • Problem behaviors of adolescents adopted from the former Soviet Union (2007)
  • An integrative description of heart health in the elderly under-served population using the Roy Adaptation Model (2011)
  • Coaching as a nursing intervention for underserved community-based elders: A pilot case study program (2011)
    Implementation of a Standardized Vancomycin Protocol: Quality Improvement through Interprofessional Collaboration (2013)

  • Nurse Led Clinics Impact on Quality of Life and Perception of Heart Failure (2013)
  • Perceptions of Interprofessional Collaboration (2013)
  • Triage Decision Making for a Rapid Response Protocol (2013)
  • Scripting with Hand Hygiene for Patient Satisfaction (2014) 
  • Venous Thrombo-Embolus (VTE) Risk Assessment in Pregnancy (2014)
  • Moving Forward with Family Centered Care: One Step at a Time (2014)
  • Nurse Communication Skills with the Deaf Community (2016)
  • Knowledge and Perceptions of Hand Hygiene in Nursing Students (2016)
  • Scripting with Hand Hygiene for Patient Satisfaction (2014)
  • Venous Thrombo-Embolus (VTE) Risk Assessment in Pregnancy (2014)
  • Moving Forward with Family Centered Care: One Step at a Time (2014)
  • Nurse Communication Skills with the Deaf Community (2016)
  • Knowledge and Perceptions of Hand Hygiene in Nursing Students (2016)
  • The Transition: Disease Knowledge and Transition Readiness (2017)
  • Homelessness: Attitudes of Nursing Students (2017)
  • Self-Efficacy and Self-Management in Children Transitioning to Insulin Pumps (2017)

All three project options (service learning, study abroad, and research) are, and will be, supported through other university departments. Service-learning projects may be done in coordination with the Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement (CASLCE) and study abroad opportunities will partner with the USA Office of International Education.

Undergraduate research is conducted with the University Council on Undergraduate Research (UCUR). The Departmental Honors in Nursing Faculty eagerly anticipate working with you to discover your area of interest, develop your plan of study, and to participate in the newly initiated program. The Nursing Honors Program is directed by Honors faculty, Drs. Alice Younce, Sonia Smith, Crystal Lewis and Rebecca Thomas.

Faculty Mentors:

For further information, visit the rest of this website and/or contact Dr. Alice Younce, ayounce@southalabama.edu.