Program Classifications | Troy University

Program Classifications

Office of Sponsored Programs Classifications

Sponsored program proposals are developed and submitted to external funding agencies to support the mission objectives of the University within three broad areas of research, instruction and public service. Although each of these areas may be involved on any given project, the major objective or primary purpose of the sponsored activity will be the determining factor for classification and accounting by the University.


Research constitutes the systematic study and investigation undertaken to discover or establish facts or principles. Research is broadly subdivided into three types:

  • Basic research is activity directed toward increasing knowledge in science. The primary aim of basic research is to further the knowledge of understanding of the subject understudy, rather than to enable practical application of that knowledge.

  • Applied research effort
    • normally follows basic research;
    • attempts to determine and exploit the scientific discoveries or improvements in technology, materials, processes, methods, devices or techniques;
    • attempts to advance state-of-the-art process, methods or products.

  • Development denotes the systematic use of scientific and technical knowledge in the design, development testing, or evaluation of a potential new product or service (or of an improvement in an existing product or service) to meet specific performance requirements or objects.


This category includes activities that are part of the University's instruction program. Activities for credit and non-credit courses; for academic, vocational, and technical instruction; and for regular, special and extension sessions should be classified as instruction.

Public Service

This category denotes activities established to provide non-instruction/non research services beneficial to individuals and groups external to the University. Included are community service programs; e.g. demonstration projects, conferences, or general advisory services.

Please refer any questions or comments regarding the information contained in the Award Administration pages to the Sponsored Programs Accounting department.