Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a list of questions you may have about the Research Symposium. If you have a question not answered below, contact your department's representative.

My research is not interdisciplinary. Does that mean I’m not eligible to present?
All student research is eligible for submission. The theme of the symposium is interdisciplinary research and we will highlight this aspect; however, it is not a requirement to participate and present your work.
How do I become eligible for the interdisciplinary award?
If your work is interdisciplinary and strongly involves participation of researchers and ideas from different disciplines, you could be eligible for the interdisciplinary award. The candidates are chosen by a committee of judges representing different colleges and departments on campus. If your work is chosen to be on the short list, you will be notified prior to the day of presentation.
Can I apply for the interdisciplinary award?
On the submission form, check the box by question "is your research is interdisciplinary?". Your abstract will automatically be forwarded to the committee for consideration.
Will there be any recognition or awards given to participating students?
Student participants will receive a Certificate of Participation at the end of the day. Four monetary awards of $500 will be given in the following categories:
  • Outstanding Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Poster Presentation
  • Outstanding Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Oral Presentation
  • Outstanding Graduate Interdisciplinary Poster Presentation
  • Outstanding Graduate Interdisciplinary Oral Presentation
What if my abstract is over the 200 word limit?
The system will limit you to the first 200 words you type in. Therefore, it is imperative that you attempt various drafts of your abstract (preferably in word) before logging onto the registration site.
I’ve never written an abstract before. Is there any guidance on abstract preparation?
We have developed a word document which serves as an abstract template to assist you in preparing your abstract.
Can my abstract be rejected?
The student research symposium is being organized for the benefit of all students on campus and we would like to provide everyone with the opportunity to participate. However, we would like students to maintain high standards in their submissions and presentations. Your initial submission will be reviewed by a set of referees who will either accept or request a resubmission. If you are required to resubmit, please consider the suggestions provided and submit your edits before the deadline. We recommend that you consult with your mentors while preparing or revising your abstract. If you able to revise your abstract sufficiently well, you will certainly be accepted.
I presented my poster at a different conference and the size is different than the required dimensions for this symposium. Do I have to print a new poster?
Your poster should not exceed 28.7" x 40.6" (vertical) or 40.6" x 28.7" (horizontal). If your poster does not exceed these dimensions, you may use your previously presented poster. Otherwise you will need to print a new poster.
Where can I print my poster?
We will print your poster for free as long as your department's faculty representative receives it by email by Friday, March 14, 2014. Make sure to meet this deadline. If you submit on the deadline itself and errors are discovered, then the responsibility of poster printing will be shifted to you. We will notify you when your poster is ready for pickup at the ADP center (University Hall): You must pick up your poster from the center within 3 days of notification.
If you miss the deadline you can submit your poster directly to the ADP center: There is a $2.00 charge for printing. The following are an example of high quality online services which are more expensive, state of the art, and have a quick turnaround time (the first site includes free shipping):
Who pays for the printing of my poster?
Up till March 30 the College of Science and Mathematics will pay the costs. After this deadline, you will be responsible for the cost of printing your poster (see previous question).
Can I use a tri-fold to present my poster?
What if I miss the abstract submission deadline? Can I still submit?
Unfortunately, there is no grace period and this deadline is strict. The symposium is held every year and we recommend you submit the following year.
I tried to upload my abstract the night it was due and it wouldn’t upload. Now I’ve missed the deadline. What should I do?
Unfortunately, we cannot accept your abstract after the deadline, irrespective of the reason. We strongly suggest you submit the abstract at least a few days before the deadline.
My abstract has figures, but the submission site won’t accept the figures. What should I do?
Your abstract must be re-written so that it does not include figures. The electronic submission program we are using cannot accommodate figures.
Can two students present one project in an oral presentation?
Yes; however, both students must share the allocated 15 minute limit.
I have to work on the day of the symposium. Can I be scheduled around my work hours?
We will try our best to accommodate your request. Let your request be known by emailing your department's faculty representative.
If I'm giving a poster, will I have time to see other posters and hear some of the oral presentations?
Poster presentations are scheduled separately from oral presentations so you will be able to attend any oral presentation you wish. Three poster sessions are scheduled this year thereby providing ample opportunity for all presenters to view posters and attend oral presentations.
When do I present or discuss my poster?
All presenters are encouraged to attend the entire day’s events. You will be notified of your specific poster/oral presentation scheduled time no laer than March 14, 2012. Your presence will be required at your scheduled session. If you have specific requests for a time slot, please email Dr. Ashwin Vaidya ( no later than March 1. We will do our best to accommodate your request.
I've never given an oral presentation before outside of class. Is there any opportunity to rehearse and get suggestions to improve my presentation?
We recommend that you practice in front of family and friends and also prepare your presentation in advance so you can practice with your advisor. And, of course there are always resources on the internet.
Who will be attending this symposium?
The entire campus community will be invited. Typically, faculty, students, staff, and guests of the presenters will be in attendance.
Can I invite family or friends?
We welcome your family and friends to attend the Symposium. The Symposium is a wonderful opportunity for you to showcase your work.