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Student Presenter Information

Learn how to participate in (and prepare for) UC San Diego's annual Undergraduate Research Conference.

A student participant gives their presentationImportant dates and notes

  • Only students who have been nominated by a UC San Diego faculty member may participate in the URC.
  • If nominated, you must register online by April 15th, 2019.
  • The conference date is May 18th, 2019; check the URC home page for details and other important dates (including a "how to present" seminar and technical run).

Your presentation

  • The URC is an oral presentation of your research project. It is not a poster presentation.
  • Total presentation time per student is 20 minutes: 15-minute presentation + 5-minute question-and-answer period.
  • Students typically use PowerPoint slides, PDF, or even or regular note cards to aid their presentation skills. We cannot guarantee that your talk will work on our PC machines if you use Google slides, Prezi, or Keynote (Google Slides and Prezi -- wifi is not always reliable; Keynote will not function on a PC). Whatever you decide to use, make sure to manage your time.
  • If you intend to present your work in a different way, please let us know. Occasionally, presentations involve a performance (usually with music or theatre projects), a demonstration (such as a robot performing a task), or a video (as an additional display of the project).

Your panel

  • There will be 5 to 9 students on a discussion panel with a faculty moderator.
  • The panels will be organized by topic, so you should plan for an audience that’s in your general area, but maybe not familiar with your specific discipline. For example, a biochemist might be put with a bioengineer, but would not be put with an art historian. An art historian might be put with a sociologist or anthropologist studying the same era or location.

Your presentation equipment

  • We will provide a PC laptop, projector, and laser pointer. If you need to use audio in your presentation, please indicate this when you register online.
  • We have slide advancers (clickers) but there is no guarantee they will work with the equipment.
  • Some of our computers are very old, and due to our budget, we are simply unable to replace or upgrade them. Therefore, if you need to use a media player or have a very large electronic file, please consider providing your own laptop; in this situation, make sure you contact us at aep@ucsd.edu. If you don’t have a laptop, consider asking your advisor, lab, or department for help in locating equipment for your presentation.
  • The projectors have a standard VGA connection. We do not provide adapters, Mac users will need to bring an adapter.
  • The Faculty Club does have free wireless, although it is not always reliable.

Checklist for presenters

The day of the conference, you should bring:

  • Your presentation saved on a USB drive as a PowerPoint file and as a PDF. Even if you’ve already uploaded your presentation or are using your own computer, you still need to bring a backup file on a USB.
  • At least one hard copy of your presentation, in case all technology fails.
  • Your notes for your presentation -- organized and in order.
  • Paper and a pen or pencil.
  • Your research paper and/or written notes, in case you're asked follow-up questions.
  • If you're bringing your own laptop, be sure to have all cables, adapters, etc.

Common questions about the URC:

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Q: What should I wear?

A: The dress code is “business casual” – what you might wear to an office. If you don’t have a good sense for what that means, ask your mentors for advice. Wear comfortable shoes.

Q: What is the format?

A: An oral presentation of your research project. It is not a poster presentation.

Q: Can I bring guests?

A: Your mentor is welcome to come for the entire event.

Other guests may come watch your presentation, but many of the rooms are small, so the event cannot accommodate large groups. Also, funds are not available to provide your guests with breakfast and lunch.

Q: Will there be vegetarian/ vegan food?

A: Yes.

Q: How many people will I present in front of?

A: Panels consist of 5 to 9 students, plus one faculty moderator. Some of the other presenters' mentors may attend, as well as other students from the conference.

Q: Where do I park?

A: There is no available student parking in the faculty club parking lot -- all spots are currently for "A" permits 24-hrs/7 days a week. Faculty who have A parking permits may park in the red "A" parking spaces on Saturday.

Most other lots or structures are available to those without a parking permit on the weekend -- please MAKE SURE that you check signs to be sure you're parking in a lot or structure that allows for free parking on the weekend (i.e. is not a 24-hrs/7 days a week or a reserved spot). Typical ones nearby may be Pangea, Hopkins, or Osler. Double-check all signs to ensure you're following parking regulations before leaving your vehicle. 

Q: What internet connection will be available?

A: UC San Diego’s secure and guest networks are available in the Faculty Club, although they are not always reliable. Please make sure you have a backup of your presentation in case wireless is not available during your presentation.

Q: Do I have to stay the whole time?

A: You are expected to stay for the entire day to attend other students’ presentations unless you've let us know ahead of time that you have a major conflict (e.g. a midterm the day of the exam). Please contact Dr. Sophia Tsai if you have questions about this.

You are expected to attend your entire discussion panel. If you must arrive late or leave your panel early, please contact AEP and your moderator ahead of time.

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