Polymathic Scholars is the newest honors community in the College of Natural Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. Designed for students with a commitment to science who also have compelling interests beyond them, Polymaths design a field of study, officially designated on transcripts as the Evidence and Inquiry certificate, in fulfillment of the College's Bachelor of Science and Arts Honors degree. This personalized field emerges from each student's interests and is defined by related questions that require knowledge from more than one branch of knowledge.
Students outside the honors community and the College of Natural Sciences may also apply to pursue the Evidence and Inquiry certificate. Those interested should schedule a meeting with CNS Honors Director Madison Searle (madisonsearle[at]austin.utexas.edu) before applying, no later than the end of their third semester of post-secondary work, directly at the Polymathic website.
The program's guiding philosophy is that the most interesting and productive questions occur at the intersections of academic disciplines, and that a major research university like UT-Austin is the ideal laboratory for answering them.
The Evidence and Inquiry certificate is unique among certificate programs because it gives undergraduates the opportunity to create, rather than choose, a field of study. Each student is author of her field; each designs her own curriculum. Polymaths have created over 200 fields, from Health in the Developing World to Music and the Brain.
Polymathic Scholars are creative, curious, and highly motivated students with diverse interests who enjoy extensive interaction with faculty—and with other creative, curious Polymaths like themselves.