Distinction awards

Distinctions in Research recognize student achievement in discovery, investigation, and innovation. 

The Center for Undergraduate Research and Scholarship offers two academic research distinctions to all eligible undergraduate students of all majors: Distinction in Research and Distinction of Excellence in Research. Both distinctions celebrate a student's active engagement in the process of discovery, investigation, and innovation far above and beyond the baccalaureate degree. Distinctions are noted on the official transcript, and students will receive a lavender honor cord in recognition for the Distinction in Research and a medallion for the Distinction of Excellence to be worn during graduation. 


  • Current AU undergraduate student in good academic standing
  • Completed minimum of 60 hours at AU 
  • Minimum Regents GPA   
    • Distinction: 3.0
    • Distinction in Excellence: 3.4

The Regents GPA is the average of every grade received at Augusta University, including repeated courses. It is calculated from your first semester at AU to your semester prior to graduation, i.e., your graduation semester is not included.  

Students must register with CURS to be eligibility for either distinction.

Requirements for Distinction in Research

 Students must meet the following criteria: 

  1.  Research activity. Complete two (2) recorded semesters or a minimum of 100 hours of undergraduate research through one or more of the following:

a.  UR courses (i.e., CURS or Departmental 2990, 3990, 4990; HONR 4500) or equivalent

b.  Paid or volunteer position as a research assistant

c.  CURS Summer Scholar’s Program, STAR, REU, or equivalent program

2.  Undergraduate Presentation of Scholarship. Present one (1) original work at a conference, symposium, senior show, or equivalent performance to a public audience. Presentations can be in the form of posters, oral presentations, creative showcase, or exhibition. Students may present in a group or as the sole presenter. Examples include the CURS Student Research Series, Phi Kappa Phi Research and Fine Arts Conference (PKP), Undergraduate Honors Society conferences, Summer Scholars Program, and other collegiate conference such as the Georgia Undergraduate Research Conference (GURC). Presentations for course assignments do not meet the criteria for this requirement.

Requirements for Distinction of Excellence in Research

Students must satisfy the requirements for the Distinction in Research and fulfill the following criteria:

3. Professional Presentation of Scholarship (Public and Professional setting). Present or publish one (1) original work at a professional conference or equivalent setting. Presentations can be in the form of posters, oral presentations, creative showcase or performance, or exhibition. Original work may include research, development of software artifact, open source project, literary work, or other creative composition and must be disseminated in a professional public forum. Students may present in a group or as the sole presenter. Common options for peer reviewed/edited publications are the Arsenal Undergraduate Research Journal (full paper published),  discipline specific journal articles, book chapters, etc. See registration form for options to choose from.


Students must complete the application for distinction and have approval from CURS by the due date (see below) of their expected graduation semester. If a presentation or requirement is scheduled but has not been completed by this date, the requirement may still be accepted if the student supplies satisfactory evidence of the likelihood of completion. CURS will send out letters to students about their application no later than two weeks after the semester deadlines. 

Application Deadlines:

  • Fall Graduation: December 1st 
  • Spring Graduation (Early Decision): March 10th 
  • Spring Graduation: April 15th 

Apply for Distinction