Undergraduate Research Honors Scholar (URHS) Program

Are you an undergraduate interested in research?

Students who register for the URHS program will:

  • receive information about undergraduate research funding, research opportunities, and other research-related resources
  • be able to apply for essential supply and equipment grants to offset the costs of their URHS activities

Upon completing the program, which requires three semesters of research, creativity or scholarship (RCS), and publication/presentation of their work, students will receive an Undergraduate Research Honors Scholar designation on their transcript when they graduate.

Students from all colleges and majors are eligible for this program. Transfer or distance learning students enrolled at ODU are eligible for this program; however, experience gained while not an ODU student will generally not qualify.

This is a new program. Please contact Eddie Hill, director of undergraduate research, at HCUndergradResearch@odu.edu for possible retroactive credit for activities performed in previous semesters.

*See Mentor Endorsement Info

How does the URHS program work?

Register for the program

Registration will allow you to receive notifications about undergraduate research funding, information about research opportunities, and and other research-related resources at ODU, and is the first step in obtaining a Undergraduate Research Honors Scholar transcript designation.

Complete three semesters of substantive undergraduate research, creativity or scholarship (RCS).

Semesters can fall into one of two categories:

Category 1: Non-course-based RCS experience

Students must be involved in a substantive RCS activity. A substantive RCS experience should include most or all of the following characteristics:

  • At least 120 hours spent in work directly relevant to RCS activity.
  • Support and mentorship of a faculty advisor, with regular meetings between advisor and student.
  • RCS activities in part devised and self-directed by the student. Multi-semester projects should demonstrate increasing independence of the student for attaining project goals.
  • RCS activities directed toward an end product, such as a publication, presentation, exhibition, or similar demonstration of the student's work

Approval by the Undergraduate Research Program must be obtained for all Category 1 experiences prior to the semester in which they take place.


Category 2: Course-based RCS experience

(Elective; up to two may be used)

Up to two of the three semester-long URHS requirements may be fulfilled through standard coursework, provided the course includes a significant RCS component as part of its structure. Standard lecture- or laboratory-based courses in which laboratory outcomes are known in advance will generally not qualify for this requirement, nor will courses involving writing of literature reviews. Key characteristics of courses qualifying for this requirement are

  • Novel inquiry or discovery
  • Learning/developing advanced skills in research, creativity, or scholarship.

A list of approved research-intensive courses is available on the Undergraduate Research webpage and from the ODU Honors College. If the course you are taking is not on the approved list, you may apply to have it count toward a Category 2 semester by filling out a pre-semester application below.

Publish or present your research, creativity, or scholarship in a public venue

Present your work at a local, state, national, or international venue. Presentations may include oral or poster presentations at scientific conferences, exhibitions of artwork, concert recital, or similar activities. The student must be the presenting/first author on the work being submitted for credit. Presentation at the ODU Undergraduate Research Symposium may be used to fulfill this requirement.


Publish or submit for publication research in a peer-reviewed journal, exhibit creative works in a juried artistic venue, or perform other high-impact dissemination as appropriate to the your discipline. First authorship is strongly encouraged, although other levels of participation will be considered, depending on discipline. The student is expected to have a played a substantial role in the publication or creative work.

Credit for the Presentation/Publication requirement may be gained by filling out the:

Category 3 End-of-Semester Reporting Form


All questions about the URHS program should be directed to Eddie Hill, director of undergraduate research, at HCUndergraduateResearch@odu.edu, or the Perry Honors College at perryhonorscollege@odu.edu.