Pi Gamma Mu Key
International Honor Society in Social Sciences
The mission of Pi Gamma Mu is to encourage and promote excellence in the Social Sciences and to uphold and nurture scholarship, leadership, and service.

THE ACHS ADDRESSES PROBLEM OF UNACCREDITED GROUPS CALLING THEMSELVES "HONOR SOCIETIES"

Students, parents, and all campus faculty should beware of predatory organizations that call themselves honor societies without requiring high academic standards for membership. These organizations often charge exorbitant initiation and membership fees. They exist primarily to make a profit, rather than to create opportunities for the students they purport to serve. Some have found ways around privacy laws and invite students via email from a national (non-campus) office, without input from a campus academic advisor to verify that the student would qualify as a high achiever.  

Others have gained a foothold at some institutions and may even have a faculty advisor, but they do not meet the minimum standards to qualify for certification. The only way to be certain is to do your research – only accept invitations from organizations that meet the criteria for Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS) certification. 

Honor Societies have existed as a part of the higher education tradition since 1885.  In 1925 the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS) was established to help colleges and universities assess the value and credibility of these organizations.

In order to help students and administrators make more informed decisions, the ACHS has asked us to share with you basic questions to ask or assess before determining any organization to be an honor society:

  • ACHS certification – this link lists all member honor societies that are certified and meet the standards: https://achsnatl.org/quick_link.asp
  • Minimum scholastic standards for membership – make sure there is a reason that the student is being honored and is not just being invited to join a group with no standards or criteria for membership
  • Non-profit status – a certified honor society will always be a non-profit, 501 c3, organization. Don't be deceived by the organization having a .org website address.  These groups often don't disclose that they are for-profit in their marketing materials. You have to ask them, or you can check here: https://www.guidestar.org/Home.aspx.
  • Campus chapters – make sure the organization is a registered and recognized chapter on your campus with on-campus leadership from students and/or faculty.
  • Fees – all collegiate honor societies have a membership fee. The fee may be solicited from the invited student or, in some cases, paid for by the institution. Having a fee is comparable to your institution having tuition.  The key factor is that the student should be paying to affiliate with an organization that has been certified to meet high standards the same way your institution has been accredited.
  • Transparency – check the organization's website to make sure that it states it is a non-profit and that there is a phone number and address listed. Is there a listing of a functioning board that provides oversight to the organization?
  • Member participation in governance – are members of the organization involved in governing the organization?

You can find more information about how to judge the credibility of honor societies at http://www.achsnatl.org/standards_alert.asp

 

NEWSLETTER EMAIL LISTSERV SUBSCRIPTIONS

Members who receive the Pi Gamma Mu Newsletter by email are subscribed to the Pi Gamma Mu Mailing List.

Click here to subscribe or unsubscribe to the Pi Gamma Mu listserv, and follow the instructions to leave or join the list.

IN THIS ISSUE:

Front Page

[Read]

ACHS ADDRESSES PROBLEM OF UNACCREDITED "HONOR SOCIETIES"

[Read more...]

WHY JOIN AN ACHS SOCIETY?

[Read more...]

PI GAMMA MU MOURNS LOSS OF PROF. OFELIA R. ANGANGCO

[Read more...]

SAVE THE DATE - 2020 CONFERENCE

[Read more...]

ALUMNI SPOTLIGHT Coming Soon!

[Read more...]

TOP 10 CHAPTERS BY MEMBERSHIP

[Read more...]

CONGRATULATIONS STAR CHAPTERS!

[Read more...]

2018-19 MEMBERSHIP REPORT

[Read more...]

OFFICIAL MERCHANDISE FOR SALE

[Read more...]

CONNECT WITH ΠΓΜ ON FACEBOOK, TWITTER, AND LINKEDIN

[Read more...]

DON'T MISS THE LATEST ISSUE OF THE ISSR

[Read more...]

ASSOCIATION OF COLLEGE HONOR SOCIETIES

[Read more...]

MISSION, IDEALS, and SYMBOLS OF PI GAMMA MU

[Read more...]

PDF Print Version (PDF)

©2019 Pi Gamma Mu