Honor societies are organizations in which one is invited to belong through formal induction processes. The main purpose of honor societies is to recognize an individual's excellence in a particular academic field, as well as to encourage scholarship, leadership, and achievement. The oldest and perhaps best-known honor society is Phi Beta Kappa, founded at the College of William & Mary in 1776, which became a model for many future honor societies. Phi Beta Kappa chapters generally select less than 10 percent of students, and usually far fewer. Honor societies are relevant to the discussion of giftedness, creativity, and talent because they encourage the academic skill development of members. These organizations range in size and scope but typically have several core similarities. Research on membership in ...

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