Phi Kappa Phi Membership

Those invited to membership in Phi Kappa Phi must at least have placed in the upper five-percent of last-term juniors and the upper ten-percent of seniors. Graduate students must be in the upper ten percent of their class. In addition, outstanding faculty and alumnae may be invited. See the list of MTSU Phi Kappa Phi Faculty, Staff, and Honorary Members.

Phi Kappa Phi is an honor society, not an honorary society or fraternity. Membership is earned; it is truly an honor to be invited for membership.

Benefits of Membership

  • RECOGNITION for superior academic performance.
  • AFFILIATION with 1,000,000 distinguished members worldwide and 282 accredited colleges and universities throughout the United States, the Philippines and Puerto Rico.
  • AWARDS such as the Phi Kappa Phi Scholar Award, the Phi Kappa Phi Artist Award, and Phi Kappa Phi 21st Century Award that recognize the scholarly and artistic endeavors of Society members and their contributions to society.
  • LEADERSHIP opportunities exist at the chapter, regional and national levels. Members may serve as chapter officers; local, regional, or national committee chairs or members; and/or members of the twelve-person national board of directors.
  • LINKS to up-to-date Society and member information via the Society's official web site at
  • NETWORKING opportunities at local and regional conferences and at national conventions.
  • PUBLICATIONS that include the Society's scholarly journal National Forum and the Society's award-winning newsletter, The Phi Kappa Phi Newsletter.
  • PUBLISHING OPPORTUNITIES exist for members to have their work featured in the Society's scholarly journal, National Forum, and within The Phi Kappa Phi Newsletter.
  • RESEARCH GRANTS to further worthy research endeavors by members, groups of members, or organizations with which members are affiliated through the Society's Promotion of Excellence Grant Program.
  • RESPECT of peers and employers for well-recognized mark of achievement associated with membership.
  • SCHOLARLY PRESENTATIONS AND PROGRAMS at national conventions, regional conferences, and chapter-sponsored symposiums; Members have opportunities to both attend as well as present their work at numerous Phi Kappa Phi-sponsored events.
  • SCHOLARSHIPS in the form of Phi Kappa Phi Graduate Fellowships and Awards of Excellence for students pursuing first-year graduate study that total $380,000 each year. Additionally, Phi Kappa Phi chapters award approximately $150,000 in scholarships on an annual basis
  • SUPPORT of the Society's mission; members, through contributions in the form of cash gifts, life insurance, bequests, and other forms of planned giving, can help Phi Kappa Phi expand its scholarships, grants, and awards programs so that an ever-increasing number of exemplary Phi Kappa Phi members can be recognized and rewarded for their worthy endeavors.



The criteria and limits observed in electing persons to membership are determined by each individual chapter, but always within the framework of the Society's Bylaws. The conditions set forth in the Bylaws may be summarized as follows: Undergraduate students may be considered who have senior status and are scholastically in the upper 10 percent (or less, if the chapter's bylaws so provide) of their class; or who have reached the final period of their junior year and are scholastically in the upper five percent (or, again, less if the chapter's bylaws so stipulate) of their class. In no case, however, may the total number of undergraduates elected in any one year exceed 10 percent of the candidates for graduation in that year.

  • Graduate students may be elected, but their number must not exceed 10 percent of the number of candidates for graduate degrees during the year.
  • Faculty members and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction may be elected to membership in limited numbers.
  • An occasional honorary or distinguished member may be elected by a chapter, with the approval of the Board of Directors.


Membership Guidelines

Membership in Phi Kappa Phi Admission to the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is by invitation only and requires nomination and approval by a chapter in accordance with the bylaws of both the chapter and the national Society. Both require superior scholarship and good character as criteria for membership.

  • Phi Kappa Phi is an honor society, not an honorary society or fraternity. Membership is earned; it is a true honor.
  • Meeting Phi Kappa Phi's criteria signifies excellence which, in turn, signifies distinction.
  • Because of their outstanding records, members of Phi Kappa Phi often are preferred candidates for grants, scholarships and fellowships from institutions where they may continue their education or do research. When they seek jobs, they find their Phi Kappa Phi membership is widely accepted as an indicator of academic ability and motivation.
  • Phi Kappa Phi, being interdisciplinary and thus drawing membership from all colleges, divisions, or departments within the academic institution, is a unifying force in education today. It is in a unique position to cultivate consciousness of relationships by bringing together individuals from a variety of disciplines. It promotes the intellectual life of the community.
  • The academic variety within the Society's membership acquaints initiates with many options if they are in the process of trying to decide upon a career.
  • Members are eligible for Phi Kappa Phi Fellowships.
  • Active members receive National Forum: The Phi Kappa Phi Journal enabling them to keep abreast of significant cultural, social and scientific issues.
  • Active members receive the Newsletter, enabling them to share in the national activities and programs of the Society and of its members.
  • Members of the Society can participate in activities sponsored by local chapters.
  • Phi Kappa Phi insists upon high quality in the institutions to which it grants chapters, e.g., strong faculties and ample libraries. It thus fulfills an obligation to assure its initiates that they are coming into a truly significant organization.
  • Phi Kappa Phi provides for the association of kindred spirits--kindred in the sense of having integrity of character and the highest ideals, as well as an abiding love of learning.


Membership Procedures

Qualified students receive a letter in the fall and spring semester inviting them to membership. (Individuals who believe they meet eligibility requirements, but who did not receive a letter of invitation, should contact the Chapter Secretary).

Faculty and Staff
Limited numbers of qualified faculty and staff are invited to membership each year, based upon nominations by members.