Undergraduate Research Festival

ACU's annual Undergraduate Research Festival will be held on April 5. The festival will feature speeches and posters by students from every field. Abstracts will be accepted January 11 - 29, 2016.


 1. Applicants must be current undergraduates enrolled in a local college or recent (December 2015) graduates. Only current undergraduates may compete for prizes.

 2. Presentations must feature undergraduate research carried out during April 2015 - April 2016. If students are participants in a multi-year project, their presentations should focus on their own contributions to the project during that time frame. As you write your proposal, consult your department head and the person who mentored you in your research. They will be asked to validate your proposal after it is received.

 3. If your research is collaborative, you and your teammates will submit one joint proposal for the project. Students are limited to two proposals, namely one for a paper presentation and one for a poster presentation. Each proposal must be on a different topic. Being included in a group presentation counts as one of the proposals, whether or not the student is the lead presenter.

For more information, please visit the ACU Undergraduate Research Festival Blog.

Standards for acceptance

1. How much discovery, application, or problem-solving has taken place in your research? Compiling data or reporting others' research is only part of the process. The process isn't finished until you have interpreted, analyzed, or applied the information. Talk with your professors about what constitutes research in your guild.  

2. How much of the research is yours as a student? If you have collaborated with professors or other researchers, you have gained invaluable experience. For your presentation, make clear what your contribution was.  

3. How well-written is your proposal? Presentations will be chosen by a panel of professors in several fields, so don't assume that they are familiar with jargon or technical concepts. Read the advice on preparing your abstract . Slipshod or hasty proposals will be rejected. 

4. Judging Criteria Rubric 

Types of presentation

You must commit to one of two formats when you write the proposal.

  • paper is defined here as a 12-minute talk to an audience (followed by a 3-min Q&A). You might or might not read a manuscript word-for-word. Thus a "paper" could involve PowerPoint, dialogue with co-researchers, demonstration or performance, etc.
  • poster presentation is talking informally with interested persons as you show a poster displaying your research.


Papers will be given in rooms with Web access and digital projectors. Each one and a half hour time slot will have five presentations. Upon acceptance of your proposal, you will be given further instructions on how to submit your powerpoint presentation.

Poster presentations will be given in groups in a high-traffic area, in 45-minute time slots. Encourage your teachers and friends to drop by. If your proposal is successful, more information will be provided regarding specifications for your poster.   


Call the Office of Undergraduate Research (325-674-6511) with all questions about submissions, scheduling, equipment, facilities, etc.