The Outstanding Achievement Awards for Scientific Research (Science and Technology) of colleges and universities are divided into natural science awards, technological invention awards, scientific and technological progress awards, scientific and technological progress awards (promotion category) and patent awards. The Natural Science Award is a scientific research achievement that has been made in the field of basic research in natural science and applied basic research; the Technical Invention Award is a scientific and technological achievement initiated by using the laws of nature; the Science and Technology Progress Award is a research achievement in the application of natural science; and the Patent Award is a scientific and technological achievement that has achieved significant benefits after the implementation of patented technology. The Outstanding Achievement Award for Scientific Research in Colleges and Universities (Science and Technology) is open to colleges and universities across the country and is reviewed once a year.
Since 2008, the Science and Technology Award of Higher Education and the Outstanding Achievement Award of Humanities and Social Science Research of Chinese Universities have been merged into the Outstanding Achievement Award of Scientific Research of Colleges and Universities. Among them, the Outstanding Achievement Award for Scientific Research (Science and Technology) in Colleges and Universities is mainly awarded to individuals and units that have made outstanding contributions in scientific discovery, technological invention, promotion of scientific and technological progress and the implementation of patented technologies, etc., aiming to mobilize the enthusiasm of the majority of teachers and scientific and technological workers and scientific and technological organizations in colleges and universities to carry out scientific and technological innovation, independent innovation and promote scientific and technological progress, and accelerate the development of China's education and scientific and technological undertakings.