December 15, 2016
Researchers often find it difficult to talk about their projects with friends and relatives who are not in the same research field. Those who are able to effectively communicate their work to a broader audience are at an advantage in terms of communicating the value of what they do to the public, to superiors at school or on the job, and to organizations that could provide funding to support a project. Sigma Xi’s Student Research Showcase is a unique opportunity for high school, undergraduate, and graduate students to develop their communication skills through multimedia. Held annually, this online science communication competition allows students to showcase their research on a website they build. The competition is open to all research disciplines.
Presentation websites contain three main components: an abstract, a technical slideshow, and a video to introduce the project and its relevance to the research community and society. The video component challenges participants to present their research to a general audience. During the review period, more than sixty Sigma Xi members volunteer as judges to evaluate students’ submissions and engage in digital conversations with presenters through their websites.
Participants find discussion with the judges and the public helpful in better understanding their research. “I’m really excited about trying to bridge the gap between the scientific community and a broader audience,” said Luka Negoita, the 2015 graduate division winner, when asked about his motivation to participate in the showcase. Participants compete for awards of up to $500 in high school, undergraduate, and graduate divisions. The winner of the People’s Choice Award is selected based on a public vote and receives a $250 award.
Sigma Xi members are encouraged to volunteer as judges.
Key deadlines for the 2017 Student Research Showcase
Project description approval and registration deadline: February 22, 2017
Project submission deadline: March 22, 2017
Evaluation period: April 3–10, 2017
For more information, visit the Student Research Showcase webpage.