Accessible Navigation. Go to: Navigation Main Content Footer

24th National Conference on Undergraduate Research

Preparing an Abstract

Unlike discipline-based conferences, NCUR covers all areas of research and creative activity.  Because of this, you should have two goals in mind when you prepare your abstract.  First, your abstract should adequately detail your project so that faculty reviewers from your own discipline can clearly ascertain the nature and scope of your project.  Second, your abstract should be sufficiently clear for general readers such that they can decide whether they wish to attend your session or visit your poster.

A very important part of your abstract submission is choosing a title that aims at both goals described above.  For many conference attendees, only your title will be considered as they decide which posters or sessions to take in.  If your title is too full of jargon, it is off-putting.  If your title is vague, it will probably be passed over.  Thus, make it a good one!

The format of your abstract is largely controlled by simply supplying the requested information for textboxes as you progress through the Abstract Submission process.  The body of the abstract will be entered as a block of text somewhere between 250 and 300 words, including the title and author line.  Ideally, the opening statement will highlight the significance of your project and act as an attention-grabbing hook to pull the reader further along.  Next, briefly describe the approach you have taken (e.g., experimental methods, artistic vision and medium, etc.) for your work.  Finally, supply some preliminary results, expected results or an overview of what an attendee will see on your poster or experience at your presentation.  Try to avoid jargon as much as possible and do not include any special symbols, equations or figures in the abstract body.  If any of these are crucial to your abstract, contact our NCUR staff via email and we will try to accommodate your needs.  Your abstract should be between 250 and 300 words, including the title and author line.

It is probably a good idea to work on your abstract with your mentor's participation ahead of the actual submission process.  That way you can simply cut and paste it into the abstract body textbox when you get to that step.  It is difficult to generate the optimal abstract in real-time during the submission process.