Undergraduate Research Symposium



The Undergraduate Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity Symposium provides the opportunity for undergraduates across the disciplines to share their research and creative activities with the UCR community.  Students may present their work in a variety of ways, such as oral presentations, poster sessions, art exhibits, performances, and electronic media.

We encourage all UCR undergraduates involved in faculty-mentored research or creative activities to apply, and those not yet involved to attend the Symposium and discover the broad range of opportunities available at UCR.

2021 Research Symposium Dates:

May 12 - 13

Application Deadline:

March 12

Submit Abstracts

Poster and Oral Presentation Guidelines

Research and scholarships are usually presented at either the oral or the poster sessions. Students should consult with the faculty mentor to determine the most appropriate track for presenting their work prior to submission. Undergraduate students should apply to present their research using one of the following tracks: 

  • TRACK 1: ORAL PRESENTATION FOR DEVELOPED RESEARCH  Oral presentations should represent completed empirical research. This track is open to papers based on completed research studies. Students should be able to clearly present their research question, outline the research methodology and assessment, and present clear outcomes.
  • TRACK 2: POSTER PRESENTATION FOR EMERGING RESEARCH Poster presentations should represent research projects that are not completed but might be of significant interest to the research community. Both conceptually- and empirically-based papers on "work-in-progress" projects would fall into this category.
  • TRACK 3: CREATIVE ACTIVITY  Creative activities and performances should represent the final product of a scholarly creative activity. These projects could include, but are not limited to, submissions from Dance, Art, Music, Creative Writing, Media and Cultural Studies, and Theatre, Film, and Digital Production. Students should be able to discuss the research/inspiration behind the final product. Performing and visual arts projects may be presented in the traditional oral or poster format, or as exhibits, displays, performances, readings, and viewings. Consult with your faculty mentor to determine the appropriate venue.


Prior to submission, students should consult with their faculty mentor to develop a 250 word abstract, which should meet the following formatting requirements:

  • Word document (.doc or .docx format)
  • Abstract title and student name on the top of the page
  • Document size cannot exceed 3 MB
  • 12-point Times New Roman font, double spaced
  • 1-inch margins on all sides


    Presentation Guidelines
      • Poster Presentation Guidelines

        Poster presentations must be on 3' or 4' (height) by 4' (width) poster board: no posters should be larger than 4' x 4'. 

        • Do not use more than two fonts; instead use bold, italic and font size. 
        • Suggested typefaces: Times New Roman, Arial, and Garamond are.
        • Place your title at the top of the poster and make sure that the text is at least 2 inches in height.

        Include the following:

        • Name
        • Major
        • Faculty mentor and department
        • Names of co-authors
        • University of California, Riverside

        • The body type for the main sections should be at least 18 point and should be large enough to read from three feet away. Edit, review, and spell check all the elements of your poster display.
        • Incorporate appropriate graphics in your poster. Label or describe any charts, tables, figures, graphs, or photos that you use and make sure all edges line up evenly.
        • Use a color scheme that is easy to view and be consistent with your white space between sections of text, figures, and headings.
        • It is best to prepare and practice a five-minute summary speech about your project This is an excellent networking opportunity so it is important to interact professionally, and be willing to answer questions. Expectations for day of presentation:
        • Plan to arrive with your poster before 9:00am on the day of your presentation
        • You are expected to be present at your assigned poster location for the entire hour
        • Plan to collect your poster by the end of your presentation hour
      • Oral Presentation Guidelines

        During your oral presentation, you will have 15 minutes to speak about your research or project, followed by a three to five minute question and answer session facilitated by a faculty moderator.

        • It is encouraged that you rehearse your presentation in front of an audience and ask your practice audience for feedback. Face your audience, speak slowly and clearly, project your voice and make frequent eye contact. Remember the general outline of your presentation and the logical order of information.
        • If you are speaking from notes, number them so that you will not lose your place. If you are reading, read slowly enough for the audience to understand (at a rate of about two minutes per double-spaced page).
        • If you are using PowerPoint, prepare the slides well in advance. Make sure each slide is clear and engaging. Keep text to a minimum in a font that can be seen from several feet away (no smaller than 18).
        • Observe your audience; if they seem lost, slow down.
        • A faculty member will moderate your oral session and will introduce all presenters to the audience, describe your session's topic, keep time, and facilitate the question and answer discussion.
        • You must arrive before the beginning of your session, stay for the duration, listen to other panelists' presentations and participate in discussions that follow.
        • Check all support materials in advance (PowerPoint presentations, handouts, transparencies, etc.) to avoid unnecessary delays in starting your presentation.

        Some general tips on preparing for your presentation:

        • Use the format of your academic discipline - All presentations should have an introduction, address a question or problem, and discuss or analyze the results of its inquiry. Consult with your faculty mentor concerning the proper form for your presentation.
        • Make your work as understandable and accessible as possible to a broad academic audience without sacrificing its disciplinary rigor.
        • Rehearse your presentation in advance and anticipate possible questions
      • Creative Activity Guidelines

        In addition to the traditional oral and poster research and scholarly presentations, the symposium will include performing and visual arts presentations. This includes music, dance, theater, drawing, painting, photography, sculpture, video, and such presented in the formats of performances, displays, exhibits, viewings, and readings. Students and faculty mentors interested in these disciplines and media should contact the symposium organizers directly at ugr@ucr.edu to discuss possible presentation formats.


      2020 Research Symposium 

      Presentations are no longer available for viewing, however, you can still find the list of all presentations along with video links for the concurrent professional development sessions.


      2020 Research Symposium information