Katie and her family moved to Belfast when she was eight from the former Soviet republic of Georgia.
They lived in the city for six years while her doctor father worked at the Royal Victoria Hospital.
Katie attended the BRIT School of Performing Arts in London before her big breakthrough at 19 with the hit single The Closest Thing To Crazy from her first album Call Off the Search.
Her sixth studio album, Ketevan, was released last September.
Katie, 29, is also well known for her charity work and is connected to a number of charities.
In 2007, she released a cover of What A Wonderful World featuring the vocals of the late Eva Cassidy and donated the entire proceeds to British Red Cross.
On Saturday, Katie received a DLit (Mus) for services to music from the academic institution.
"It was a complete surprise and really unexpected to be awarded this honorary degree and I am so delighted. I consider Belfast a city very close to my heart and to be recognised in this way in the field of music is phenomenal," she said.