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University Academic Programs

Undergraduate Research & Scholarship Symposium

Presenters

The Undergraduate Research & Scholarship Symposium is a unique opportunity for students to showcase their research and scholarly work to friends and family, community members, and research partners. In order to make the most out of this opportunity, it is recommend that interested undergraduate students make use of the workshops and resources made available to them. Below you will find a timeline of events and deadlines pertinent to interested Symposium presenters, best practices for individual and group presentations, and information to register for the Undergraduate Research & Scholarship Symposium. 

Timeline of Events and Deadlines

March 1 | Presenter Registration Form Opens

March 28 | Abstract Workshop 

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Abstract Writing Workshops to learn how to craft or improve their research abstract. An abstract is required for symposium registration. | CCESL Suite 18, Driscoll South | 12:00-1:00 pm

April 12 | Abstract Workshop

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Abstract Writing Workshops to learn how to craft or improve a research abstract. Abstract is required for symposium registration. | CCESL Suite 18, Driscoll South | 2:00-3:00 pm

April 18 | Abstract Workshop

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Abstract Writing Workshops to learn how to craft or improve a research abstract. Abstract is required for symposium registration. | CCESL Suite 18, Driscoll South | 4:00-5:00 pm

April 23 | Presenter Registration Closes

All participants must submit their registration form by 11:59 pm. 

April 24 | Poster Workshop

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Poster Workshops to learn tips and tricks on how to design and create a symposium poster. Free printing offered to all students who attend a poster workshop ($60 value). | Margery Reed Hall, room 106 | 12:00-1:30 pm

April 25 | Poster Workshop

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Poster Workshops to learn tips and tricks on how to design and create a symposium poster. Free printing offered to all students who attend a poster workshop ($60 value). | Anderson Academic Commons, Room 284 | 4:00-5:30 pm

April 27 | Poster Workshop

All students are encouraged to attend one of three Poster Workshops to learn tips and tricks on how to design and create a symposium poster. Free printing offered to all students who attend a poster workshop ($60 value). | Anderson Academic Commons, Room 340 | 12:00-1:30 pm

May 1 | Poster Submission Deadline (for print)

Participants who attended a poster workshop are required to submit their poster by this date in order to qualify for free printing.

May 8-9 | Poster Pick Up

Students who submitted their poster for printing through The Writing Center are able to pick up their posters from Anderson Academic Commons, Room 280. 

May 9 | Undergraduate Research & Scholarship Symposium

1:00-2:30pm - Poster setup
2:30-4:00pm - Project competition
4:00-6:00pm - Symposium

Project competition

All projects will be entered into the competition. Prizes will be awarded in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in each of the following four categories: 1) most innovative project, 2) best oral presentation, 3) project with the most impact (such as in the community, contributions to knowledge, or application to the field), and 4) best overall.

You must have your poster displayed by 2:30pm. You will be expected to be present to speak to the judges and orally present your poster. If you are not available, you will not be eligible for the "best oral presentation category" or the "best overall." Judges will circulate to review your poster and your oral presentation between 2:30-4pm ahead of the event opening to the general public.

Each poster will be judged by a panel of 2-3 faculty, staff and/or alumni. Judging will be based on the clarity of your abstract, quality of your presentation, and excellence of content.

Prizes will include gift cards to Amazon, local retailers, swag and goodies.

faqs

Will I have access to electricity?

We cannot guarantee access to electricity at the event. We suggest using battery powered items and ensuring they are fully charged before setting up.

How much space will I have?

Each project will have a space approximately 3.5'deep and 4.5' wide. The only item in the space will be an easel to display the poster. Please be conscious of any additional items you bring with you to the event, such as backpacks, as there is limited space.

What equipment will I have access to in my space?

The only equipment provided to registered symposium participants is an easel and backing board to display your poster. Should you wish to bring any other display items (e.g. laptop, table, etc.) you will need to provide it. Please note that any additional equipment you bring MUST fit within your designated space, which measures approximately 3.5' deep by 4.5' wide.

Who should I contact if I have an ADA accommodation to request?

If you require an ADA accommodation please email uap.urss@du.edu.

How should I present if my project is a performance or creative work?

If your project is a creative work (such as a musical piece, visual art, performance, etc.) you may use your designated space (approximately 3.5' deep by 4.5' wide ) to present your project in an alternative format. For example, you could have a recording of your musical performance that attendees could listen to and then engage in conversation with you, you could display your artwork, or perform a scene, read a piece of creative writing, etc.

What size should my poster be?

Your poster should be no larger than 36" (height) x 42" (width)

Where can I print my poster?

Students are strongly encouraged to attend one of the poster workshops offered by the Writing Program. If you attend one of these workshops, you will be able to have your poster printed for free if you follow the instructions for submitting your poster by the deadline. Visit https://www.du.edu/uap/symposium/poster.html

If you cannot attend one of these sessions and need to have your poster printed on your own, expect to pay $30-50 and up. Here are some places you can have your poster printed (be sure you leave adequate time for stores to print, some require several days):

  • University of Denver Quick Copy Center, located in the bookstore
  • Kinko's stores
What material do I need to bring to hang my poster?

Each presenter is responsible for bringing their poster and any necessary clips, pins or tape to affix their poster to their mounting board. A mounting board and easel will be provided and must be returned at the end of the event. 

How do I locate where I should display my poster?

When you arrive to the event you will be provided with a map and the location number you have been assigned.

When can I set up my poster?

Students must set up there posters between 1:00 and 2:30pm on the day of the event (Wednesday, May 9th). 

When is the project competition?

The project competition will take place between 2:30-4pm. All projects will be entered into the competition, however, to be considered for the "best oral presentation" and "best overall" categories, you must be present and prepared to give your oral presentation to judges during this time; judges will circulate from 2:30-4pm ahead of the event opening to the general public.

How should my poster look?
  • It should be done so that the viewer can easily follow it - type should be large enough to be viewed from several feet away - flow charts should be simple, leaving more complicated explanations to verbal interaction between the presenter and the viewers.
  • Allow ample time to prepare your poster. Use a crisp, clean, and strong title. Do not tell the entire research history. Present only enough data to support your conclusions and show the originality of the work. The best posters display a succinct statement of major conclusions at the beginning, followed by supporting text in later segments and a brief summary at the end.
  • All posters should feature a title, your name, and the name of the institution where the research was performed and should credit others, as appropriate. The title lettering should be about 2" to 3" (5 cm to 7.5 cm) with subheadings ½" to 1' high (1.25 cm to 2.5 cm).
  • All lettering should be legible from about 5 feet (1.5 m) away. Text material should be approximately 24 points (1/4"/.625 cm).
  • Convert tabular material to a graphic display, if possible.
  • Use color to add emphasis and clarity.
  • Make illustrations simple and bold. Enlarge photos to show pertinent details clearly.
  • Displayed materials should be self-explanatory, freeing you for discussion.
How do I present a poster?

An academic poster is a summary of your research, scholarly, or creative project in a visually engaging way. It must be academically sound, highlighting the context of your work (through photographs, maps, etc.), your methods, and results (with graphs, charts, photographs, etc.).

The poster should be able to stand on its own as a clear, logical presentation of your work, without any explanation from you.

To do a poster presentation, you should prepare an "elevator speech" – a one to two-minute summary of your project that you could deliver to anyone during a typical elevator ride. Don't wait for viewers to ask a question; say, "Would you like to hear about my research in about two minutes or less?" This frees them from having to read and figure it all out themselves. Then offer to answer questions. If you don't know an answer, admit it, speculate with the person, or ask what s/he thinks. Be sure to check to see if your listener understands the technical aspects of your explanation and if what you're saying makes sense.

Be sure to speak loudly enough to be heard, slow enough that you think your are speaking too slowly, and without fillers like "um," "uh," "like," "you know," and "okay."

It helps to practice on your friends and family first!

Poster presentations can be a fun way to engage in-depth with your research; it can also be a great way to communicate your research to others. The practice of creating a visual representation of your work can also help you to find key messages and recognize themes in your work that you might not have otherwise realized.

A Few Tips for Presenting Your Poster
  • Arrive early at the display site. Hang your poster square and neat.
  • Know the audience. Use lay language and explain any disciplinary terms you use.
  • Focus on the evidence: your graphics.
  • Be focused and know the point you want to get across
  • Provide a brief, clearly stated background and walk the audience through the content of the poster by interpreting all results
  • Use your poster as a visual aid - don't read it!
  • Prepare 30 second, 2 minute, & 5 minute overviews of your poster.
  • Tell viewers ...
    • the context of your problem and why it is important (Introduction),
    • your objective and what you did (Objective & Methods),
    • what you discovered (Results), and
    • what the answer means in terms of the context (Discussion).

Adapted from: Northern Arizona University, Evergreen State College and NC State University