In both the spring and fall, ICaP teams up with the Office of Undergraduate Research to provide students with the opportunity to present work completed in ICaP courses to a larger audience. Participating students present their research to an interested public. Both the fall Research Expo and the Spring Undergraduate Research Conference (URC) are great opportunities to show off hard work and practice valuable presentation skills. The larger of the two is the Undergraduate Research Conference, typically held in the spring.
What is the Undergraduate Research Conference?
In the spring semester, the Office of Undergraduate Research organizes a conference for the presentation of undergraduate research in all areas of study. Students at all levels are encouraged to participate. Students are expected to present formal research posters for the poster symposium section of the conference, and to give professional research talks if participating in the oral sessions. Unlike the fall symposium, the URC allows students the opportunity to earn prizes in certain project categories.
The following information is relevant for ICaP students considering participating in the spring URC. In addition, students should consult the OUR’s helpful FAQ.
Why should ICaP students participate?
Presenting the work you completed in an ICaP course gives you the opportunity to:
- Professionalize and share your work
- Demonstrate your research and creativity
- Network with other undergraduate leaders
- Compete for awards (spring URC only)
Many members of the Purdue community, including deans, department heads, professors, graduate and undergraduate students, and even President Daniels, attend the URC. Sharing your work in this forum provides you the opportunity to network with these individuals and to professionally share your research.
Further, ICaP students presenting a poster at the spring URC will be automatically entered into first-year writing award categories in addition to being eligible for the prizes given out by the OUR. This year’s ICaP award categories are:
- Best Poster Design
- Best Visualization of Primary Research
- Most Creative Research Project
- Best Collaborative Project
ICaP judges will review presentations and select one winning presentation in each category.
How can I participate as a student?
Register to participate by filling out an online submission form, which can be found on the OUR website. All are welcome to present. If you’re not sure how to get started on your research poster or oral presentation, talk with your instructor or our additional resources. In addition, the OUR offers a series of workshops for students in the fall and spring semesters to help prepare you to present your work.
If you participate, you can expect that attendees will show interest in your project. If you present a research poster, your poster will be set up on its display board for the duration of the symposium or conference, and you can expect viewers to ask questions or seek a short explanation of your work. If you are giving an oral presentation at the spring URC, the audience may ask questions about your project after you give your talk.
How do I write an abstract for submission?
If you need help writing or revising your project abstract, the Purdue OWL offers resources (and you can make an appointment in the lab to work with a tutor), and the Office of Undergraduate Research offers workshops to help students complete abstracts. The Purdue Writing Lab is also regularly offers workshops to help students turn classroom projects into abstracts, posters, and presentations.
For more on abstracts:
- “Writing Report Abstracts” by Purdue Online Writing Lab
- “Bad vs. Good Abstract” by Elsevier
- “How to write an abstract/annotation” by Purdue Libraries
In which research category should I submit my poster?
You should select the area of study that best matches your subject and methodologies. For example, if you researched a specific technology that could be used in lunar agriculture, you would probably select the Innovative Technology/Design category. If, however, you conducted a survey to learn whether certain agricultural practices are considered ethical among Purdue students, you would probably submit to the Social Science/Humanities category. Consider the audience of your project and the secondary research you used to frame your work to help inform your selection. If you are not sure, talk to your instructor.
How do I design a good research poster?
See some of our tips and tricks on our Designing your Research Poster page.