Office of the Registrar

Latin Honors (Distinctions)


Latin Honors for Spring 2023 will be calculated twice- prior to the ceremony with the student’s most recent term GPA, and again after final grades are posted. Latin Honors will print on student’s transcripts and diploma. Students will be notified via email if they qualify for a distinction.  Distinction cords will be distributed prior to the in-person commencement ceremony.

How do I earn a distinction cord?

Three degrees with distinction are granted to graduating students based on all work attempted in meeting requirements for the degree as follows:

Cum Laude for an overall average of 3.50
Magna Cum Laude for an overall average of 3.70
Summa Cum Laude for an overall average of 3.90
UNCW Catalogue

How are Distinctions Calculated?

Distinctions are calculated twice for the Fall and Spring Commencement Ceremony. For the commencement ceremony, distribution of honor cords and the printing of the commencement program, distinctions are calculated based on the grades up to, but not including, the student’s final term. Distinctions are recalculated after final grades for the term have been posted. All attempted transfer hours are calculated into the distinction. GPA’s are not rounded. Final distinctions are acknowledged on diplomas and official transcripts.

Where are Distinction Cords Distributed and how do I know if I qualify for a cord?

Distinction Cords are distributed by the Office of the Registrar. The Office of the Registrar will notify students who qualify for a distinction cord via email after the graduation application closes for information on how to pick up their cord. Distinction cords are available only for undergraduate students. Graduate students are not eligible for a distinction.

Questions regarding Distinction, Who should I contact?

If you have questions regarding your possible or final distinction please email the Graduation Specialist from your UNCW email account at Please be sure to include your student ID number and all the questions you have regarding your distinction.

Graduate students questions should be sent to