Requirements to be part of the National Honor Society

If you are just entering high school, you have probably heard about the National Honor Society (NHS). It is an organization for high schoolers that promotes leadership, service, character, and scholarship.

Over one million students are currently participating in NHS activities in all 50 states and territories of the United States.

If you want to know more about how to become a member and what are the requirements, keep reading this article.

Why become a member?

The National Honor Society started in 1921 by an association of principals. It was the first honor society of the country. At almost 100 years old, the NHS is one of the most well-known educational and leadership groups.

To become a National Honor Society member, you must apply to your local chapter every year. You will need to be nominated by a teacher, and show proof of your community service hours annually.

national honor society website


Students in grades 10–­­12 who meet the criteria for membership outlined by their school’s chapter are eligible to be invited for membership. Each chapter has to publish its qualifications for membership, which is based on the four pillars of NHS:


Per national guidelines, at a minimum, students must have a cumulative GPA of 85, B, 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, or equivalent standard of excellence. However, each school chapter can require a higher cumulative GPA.

Also, you must get good scores in the standardized tests. You need 1750 or higher on the SAT, a 200 or higher on the PSAT, and a 26 or higher on the ACT. If you’re serious about NHS membership, consider asking your parents if you can enroll in a prep course.


This involves voluntary contributions made by a student to the school or community, done without compensation.

There are many ways to volunteer. You should pick a cause you feel passionate about as you’ll be more motivated to stick your service out. Love animals? Work for your local Humane Society. Are you interested in politics? Try doing campaign work for a cause you support. Big reader? Ask your local library if they need assistance. However, yes.


National Honor Society values leadership. So, the organization seeks out student leaders who convey good problem-solving skills and contribute ideas to the world around them. If you want to be an NHS member, you need some leadership experience on your resume.


The student of good character is cooperative; demonstrates high standards of honesty and reliability; shows courtesy, concern, and respect for others; and generally maintains a clean disciplinary record.

READ ALSO: Phi Beta Kappa • Requirements

Application process

Check if your school has an NHS chapter

All admissions to the NHS are handled at the local level, so we recommend you to use this online finder:

national honor society chapter finder

If your school does not have an NHS chapter, try asking your principal, academic adviser, or teacher to establish an NHS chapter at your school.

If it does, check your student handbook or speak with someone in your main office to identify the chapter adviser. This is a faculty member who will be able to tell you the criteria for admissions.

Find a teacher to nominate you for NHS

You cannot apply to the NHS by yourself. A faculty member at your school must nominate you. Then, the educator associated with your school’s chapter of NHS will decide on your application. However.

Sometimes, a teacher will simply nominate you without your asking. However, if this does not happen, and you feel qualified, consider approaching a teacher and asking. Pick a teacher whose class you think you’ve done well in and who is impressed by your work and dedication. Your teacher will have to print out and submit a student nomination form. However, yes.

Once your teacher submits your student application form, the person heading the NHS chapter at your school will make a decision. He or she will decide whether or not you meet NHS criteria and are eligible to apply.

Work hard on your application

NHS applications vary from school to school. Whatever your school requires, spend a lot of time on your application. A solid application can increase your chances of being accepted into NHS. However.

Include all the experience you have related to NHS’s core values: scholarship, leadership, service, and character. Include things like work on school clubs, experience with sports, volunteer work, after school jobs, and any awards or achievements.

On the other hand, many chapters of NHS require an essay as part of the membership application. However.

Maintain the membership

Once you are accepted to the NHS, you will have to maintain your member status. This means keeping your grades up, continuing to score high on standardized tests, continuing your community involvement, and maintaining a clean disciplinary record. Continue to work hard, even after acceptance, as it is possible to be dismissed from NHS.