Transcript Designations

USU transcript designations showcase a graduate's skills and accomplishments to future employers and graduate programs. Honors has partnered with several USU programs to integrate requirements for Honors and other transcript designations. Every student who successfully completes University Honors Program requirements earns the University Honors transcript designation and qualifies for an Undergraduate Research designation (application required). The following designations may be of particular interest to Honors students:

Undergraduate Research

All students who graduate with Honors qualify for this transcript designation because of the research they complete for Honors in Practice and Honors Capstone Project. Students must apply for this designation through the Office of Research (see link to application below).

All Honors students seeking the Undergraduate Research transcript designation must 1) complete a minimum of two semesters of undergraduate research, scholarship, or creative activity supervised by a faculty member, 2) present their work at a recognized venue (Student Research Symposium, UCURNCUR, a professional conference in the field of study, etc.), and 3) complete and submit the application for this transcript designation to the Office of Research.

Community-Engaged Scholar

The University Honors Program offers its students the opportunity to ground their Honors work in community-engaged learning. Focusing on both classroom work and applied community learning, Community-Engaged Scholars are students who have used the skills learned in their disciplines to think deeply and to engage thoughtfully with local, national, and global problems. The Community-Engaged Scholar transcript designation communicates to future employers and/or graduate programs the student’s commitment to making connections between academic and community-engaged work. To earn the Community-Engaged Scholar transcript designation, students must meet the requirements below. 

Transcript Designation Requirements
  1. 300 hours of community-engaged service: Students must document community service through the Center for Community Engagement and may count this service toward up to two Honors Mentoring Agreements (3 Honors points each, for a total of 6 points), providing that they complete and submit documentation through the University Honors Program Canvas course.
  2. 3 CEL designation classes or 9 points in Honors in Practice work: All Honors Community-Engaged Scholars are required to take USU 2160: Community Voices and two additional CEL designated courses. Honors students are encouraged to complete an Honors Think Tank course (3 Honors points), as one of the CEL courses. Alternatively, students may complete TWO service-based Honors Mentoring Agreements (3 Honors points each, for a total of 6 points), an Honors Think Tank (3 Honors points), and USU 2160: Community Voices. The 9 Honors points earned in this manner count toward the total 28 points required for graduation with University Honors.
  3. Honors Capstone: For their Honors Capstone Projects, Community-Engaged Scholars must develop and implement a sustainable service project that addresses a community-identified need. This project can meet requirements for both the CES capstone and the Honors capstone. Like other Honors students, they enroll in HONR 3900, the one-credit, pass/fail pre-capstone proposal course, before completing the project. The written part of the Honors Capstone Project must be a community-engaged learning portfolio that documents all of the student’s community-engaged learning experiences at USU and reflects specifically and in detail on the relationship between the Capstone and the student’s academic discipline. For Honors students, this reflective writing must be substantial and meet the requirements for an Honors Capstone Project.

To begin pursuing this transcript designation, students must first apply to become a Community-Engaged Scholar through the Center for Community Engagement, usually at least four semesters before their intended graduation.

Global Engagement Scholar

The University Honors Program offers its students the opportunity to ground their Honors work in topics of global concern. Honors Global Engagement Scholars are students who have learned to think deeply and to engage thoughtfully, both in and outside of the classroom, with the international issues that shape their disciplines. The resulting transcript designation of Global Engagement Scholar communicates to future employers and/or graduate programs the student’s commitment to international communication and understanding. To earn the Global Engagement Scholar transcript designation, students must meet the requirements below.

Transcript Designation Requirements
  1. Foreign language competence: Students must complete two years of coursework (or equivalent competency testing) in a foreign language.
  2. Internationally Focused Course or Honors in Practice work: Students must complete at least 15 credits/Honors points of approved course or Honors in Practice work with an international focus (Honors capstone projects and study abroad credits may count toward this total with Honors Advisor and/or Senior Study Abroad Advisor approval). The approved list of courses can be found on the Office of Global Engagement website, but most Honors students will complete this work through an internationally focused capstone project (up to 5 points), study abroad (minimum 6 credits/points), and globally engaged Honors Mentoring Agreements and/or topical Honors Book Labs (up to 6 points). Students may also justify in their application why a course that is not already approved should count toward this designation. 
  3. Study Abroad: Students must participate in a study abroad program, in which they earn at least 6 credits (year, semester, or short-term program). All credits earned on study abroad will count toward the required 15 credits/points of internationally focused coursework, and potentially all 15 credits could be earned abroad.
  4. Pre- and Post-Experience Reflection: All Global Engagement Scholars must successfully complete both a pre-departure orientation in preparation for the international experience (term before study abroad program) and a returnee social (after study abroad program) that includes reflection on the meaning of the international experience. Options for these reflective discussions include pre-departure orientations and returnee socials sponsored by the Office of Global Engagement, the University Honors Program, the Institute of Government and Politics, or the sponsoring college or department. Global Engagement Scholars may be trained to lead these reflection conversations as part of their reflection presentations. (NOTE: students may report in Canvas as a co-curricular activity any such presentations they attend, including their own).
  5. Reflection Presentation: After attending a returnee social after their program, Global Engagement Scholars must make a public presentation describing a specific international issue that informed their study abroad and articulating how that issue has extended and shaped their academic study at USU. International Education Week is held during the week before Thanksgiving break, and the week includes a Global Engagement Scholar Symposium. Students are encouraged to deliver their reflection presentations at this symposium, when possible. Honors can also provide a venue for these presentations.
  6. Honors Capstone: The Honors Capstone Project must demonstrate substantial engagement with global issues in the student’s discipline. Like other Honors students, Global Engagement Scholars enroll in HONR 3900, the one-credit capstone proposal course, before completing the project. The faculty mentor, any committee members, the Departmental Honors Advisor, and the Honors Program Executive Director must approve not only the Honors Capstone Proposal itself but also its Global Engagement emphasis. The capstone can account for up to 5 (1 for proposal, 1 for work plan, and 3 for project) of the required 15 credits/points of internationally focused coursework (#2 above).

Students can indicate interest in this designation on Honors Mentoring Agreement and Honors Capstone Proposal and Completion forms submitted to the Honors Program in Canvas.

Students can apply for this designation after they have completed the foreign language competence, pre-departure orientation, study abroad, and internationally focused coursework requirements. The post-experience reflection presentation shall take place after acceptance. There will be at least one mandatory meeting with the Senior Study Abroad Advisor in the Office of Global Engagement, either individually or as a group with other Global Engagement Scholars. There may be additional optional meetings and you are welcome to schedule appointments with the Senior Study Abroad Advisor. 

Latin Scholastic Distinctions

USU also awards Latin Scholastic Distinctions at graduation, based solely on USU GPA, as follows:

  Summa Cum Laude
Magna Cum Laude
Cum Laude
3.950 to 4.000 GPA
3.800 to 3.949 GPA
3.500 to 3.799 GPA

More information about USU's academic distinctions can be found in the University Catalog.