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Undergraduate Research

Graduate With Research Distinction

Want your research to stand out? Highlight your research experience on your transcript by graduating with distinction—in your major or in leadership—through the research pathway.

Graduating With Distinction in Your Major

Graduation "with Distinction" is an optional program of study where you actively engage in significant research, scholarship or performance activities in collaboration with a faculty mentor in your chosen field. 

How to Start

Talk with your academic advisor. The following majors have established programs:

  • Anthropology
  • Chemical Engineering
  • English
  • Geology
  • Geophysics
  • History
  • International Studies
  • Mathematics
  • Music Performance
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociology
  • Sports and Entertainment Management

If your major doesn't have an established program, ask your advisor if planning for one is underway and who you should talk to.


  • One-on-one research with USC faculty
  • Hands-on learning in your field
  • Great experience for graduate school or future employment
  • Skill-building in critical thinking, communication, etc.
  • Listed on your transcript!

Graduating With Distinction in Leadership

Visit the Center for Integrative and Experiential Learning for full details and requirements for graduating with leadership distinction (GLD) in the research pathway. 

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.