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Student Scholar Symposium Judging Process

Judging will occur in three rounds:

Round One: Prior to the Symposium, the project abstracts, summaries, or creative statements written by the students are screened using the five criteria (listed below) with particular emphasis on sound methodology.

Round Two: Student presenters who are accepted to the Symposium will upload their poster image to Oxford Abstracts prior to the event. Faculty judges will have access to review these submissions. Students who do not submit their posters in advance will not be eligible to receive scholarship awards. Judging teams then discuss these to prepare to visit each poster at the Symposium event.

Round Three: During the public presentation phase of the Symposium, at least one judge will interview presenters and arrive at a final determination as to the best Symposium projects in the judges’ respective categories. The final determination is made the day of Symposium and scholarships are presented to students at the Award Ceremony.

Community members from across campus serve as the judges for the Symposium. Judges come from various disciplines. Ensuring that your project is straightforward and clear for an audience of educated non-experts (i.e. professors in other departments) is a good practice when you are preparing your poster.

Scholarship Award Criteria

Each year, participants are judged based on their poster and their ability to speak about their research. Student Scholar Symposium projects will be judged according to the following criteria in awarding scholarships:

  • Clear focus or central research question: The presentation explicitly states what the project accomplished or will accomplish. There is a clear controlling idea, hypothesis, or objective.
  • Sound research methodology: Approach to the project knowledgeably conveys how the project is to be executed or evidence appropriate to the discipline and how it was obtained.
  • Clear presentation of results/product/ performance or expected outcome: Details about the project are presented in an organized, fresh, and thoughtful manner. Mastery of the subject is evident. The project can be understood by someone knowledgeable in the field and also by a reasonably informed non-specialist.
  • Progress on the project to date: The project is complete or can be completed in a reasonable amount of time.
  • Contribution to the field or discussion of potential impact: There is an explanation of the significance or use of the project, of why the project was or is worth doing, or of what new knowledge, understanding, or insight was or will be gained.