Graduate Research and Creativity Expo

The 2016 Graduate Research & Creativity Expo

Communicating Beyond Your Discipline Workshop: Best Practices for the Research Expo



The UNCG Graduate School in partnership with the Office of Research and Economic Development will host the 4th annual Graduate Research and Creativity Expo: “Scholarship That Matters.” This showcase of talent will be held on Thursday, April 7, 2016, from 12:00 – 4:00 pm in the Elliott University Center at UNCG. Students will present from 12:00 -3:00 pm and final judging will take place from 3:00 – 4:00.  Registration is open until February 1, 8:00 a.m. or until registration fills, whichever comes first. Registration is limited to 100 Posters and 21 presentations/video installations.

This co-sponsored event is designed to showcase graduate research and creative work to a variety of non-specialized audiences. It is not intended to be like an academic conference in your discipline, as you will be presenting your work to judges and individuals not in your field.


The purexpo1pose of the Expo is to showcase the accomplishments of UNCG’s graduate students to the Greater Greensboro community, and to provide a venue for students to communicate their research and creative activities to the public. Graduate students will explain and present their work through posters, with a few students presenting short colloquies or short videos.

The Expo is orexpo3ganized into competitions in the following poster topics: Natural, Physical, and Mathematical Sciences; Health Sciences; Social Sciences; Humanities; Creative Arts; and Professional Programs. Click here to see last year’s Poster Topics.


Judges will be circulating throughout the event and will be evaluating presentations in each of the venues.  All students must be available for potential final judging from 3:00 – 4:00 pm.  Following the competition, a winner from each category will be awarded a $1000 prize.  Winners from the competition will also participate in May at the State Legislature’s Graduate Education Day in Raleigh.

The event is free and open to the public. Free parking will be provided in the Oakland Parking Deck for showcase attendees.  Community partners and area employers are encouraged to come and engage with the students.


Click here for a shareable Graduate Research Expo flyer!

 Presenters Preparing for the Expo

Please plan to present your work in a way that is accessible to diverse audiences and explains in jargon-free language why your work matters and is relevant. Imagine that you may be speaking to Middle College students, undergraduates, journalists, community members, area business owners, representatives from boards and foundations, state legislators, or your neighbors down the street. Please do not plan to re-use a poster or paper that you have prepared for a discipline-specific conference: be thinking of your new audience(s) and the best way to communicate with them.

Registrants are strongly encouraged to present a poster; remember that your poster is not intended to speak for you and that you must present your work and make it accessible to your audience(s). Space is very limited for panel presentations and priority will be given to registrants whose creative work does not translate well into the poster format. Registrants are strongly discouraged from “reading” a paper and must engage with the audience, so a poster entry must present their research to the judges in a verbal presentation.

*Please Note:  All registrants up to 100 posters and about 21 panel presentations/video installations are automatically accepted and all forms of presentation will be evaluated on an equal footing (there is no hierarchy implied in the choice of one format over another). If you register after we’ve received 100 poster registrations or 21 presentation/video installations, you will be placed on a waiting list and notified within 2 weeks of registering.

Categories and Prize Information

Participants may register to present in one of six categories:

  • Creative Arts
  • Health Sciences
  • Humanities
  • Natural, Physical, and Mathematical Sciences
  • Professional Programs
  • Social Sciences

There will be a $1,000* prize for the winner of each category. (If a group wins the category, the prize money will be split evenly among registered group members.)

*The $1,000 award will be posted to your University student account.  If you have a zero balance when the award posts, the cashier’s office will issue you a refund check for the full amount.  If you have a current balance, your award will pay that balance first and any funds that remain will be issued to you as a refund check.  If you received Federal financial aid in 2015-2016, your aid may be reduced by the amount of this award. 

Graduate Research and Creativity Expo Program

The program for the 2015 Graduate Research and Creativity Expo is available at

Criteria for Evaluation will include:

  • Clarity of Communication to a Non-Specialized Audience
  • Effective Presentation Skills
  • Content Knowledge and Creativity
  • Organization
  • Originality
  • Ability to Explain Why This Research/Work Matters (economic impact, societal impact, etc.)

Research Expo evaluation rubric

Please Note – Potential Final Judging: Some categories are larger and require several sets of judges, hence to create a higher level of fairness, finalists in those categories will present to all the judges in the final round from 3:00 – 4:20 pm. You will be notified in advance if your category will require several sets of judges and a final round of judging.

Project Format

Most registrants should select “Poster”. Even a poster registrant will present to the judges.  There is very limited space for 15 minute presentations. Please keep in mind that all Expo winners must prepare a poster for the follow up events, regardless of presentation format in the Research and Creativity Expo.

  • Poster Presentations: Presenters are asked to be available for at least one hour to discuss their work with attendees at the Expo. You will have 15 minutes to present and discuss your poster with the judges. The poster should function as a representation of your main points or visual cues to your presentation. Size of posters is limited to 3′ (top to bottom) by 4′ (side to side); recommended layout can be found below under Resources.
  • Panel Presentations: Presenters will have a maximum of 15 minutes to present with 5 minutes for questions.
  • Media Presentations: Presenters will have a maximum of 15 minutes to present with 5 minutes for questions. Presentations with media should show work that cannot be presented in a poster format, such as a short media clip of your dance, furniture creation, etc.


Registration is open until February 1, 8:00 am or until registration fills, whichever comes first. Registration is limited to 100 Posters and 21 presentations/video installations.

When registering, you will:

  • Select whether you will be presenting alone or as a group and who will be the “lead”
  • Select the area in which you intend your work to be considered:

□ Natural, Physical, and Mathematical Sciences
□ Health Sciences
□ Social Sciences
□ Humanities
□ Creative Arts
□ Professional Programs

  • Write an abstract (150 words or less) for the program booklet.
  • Choose one format:

□ 36” high x 48” wide Poster (easel and poster backer provided)
□ 15-min. Panel/Media Presentation

You may view a sample registration form here so that you have a better idea of the information needed on the 2016 registration form. 

To register: Please completely fill out the registration form found and submit.

You may also copy and paste this link into your browser:

Please Note – Potential Final Judging: Some categories are larger and require several sets of judges; hence to ensure the highest possible level of fairness, finalists in those categories will present again to all the judges in the final round from 3:00 – 4:00 pm. You will be notified in advance if your category will require several sets of judges and a final round of judging.

All posters should be collected from the event at 3:00. If you are a finalist, you will be moved to a final judging room for your category at that time.

Please recognize that disclosure through any sort of publication could jeopardize any patenting opportunities and limit the value of an innovation.  If you believe that you may have some intellectual property that needs assessment for patent or copyright significance, please contact your faculty adviser and/or the Office of Innovation Commercialization, Staton Noel at  In addition, research performed via sponsored agreements may have clauses that restrict publication or ownership implication.  Please check with your faculty adviser or Sponsored Research for information.


Poster Presentation Layouts (PowerPoint File)

Printing Your Poster

The cost of having a research poster printed can be significant (as much as approx. $200). A number of academic departments have offered to assist students from any program by making their printers available at a reasonable cost. Please allow time to contact the departments and reserve a space in their schedule; posters may take a day or so to print, and departments may need to do them in blocks. See below for some options:

*Please note: You need to be aware that the printed version of the poster will be whatever version of your poster is sent to a department. If you notice an error after the poster has been printed, you are financially responsible for printing a new poster, as well as the original poster.

  • Department of Geography
    Contact  Jim Nelson. Cost to print a 36”h x 48”w poster is $20 on regular paper. Deadline for printing a poster for the Research and Creativity Expo is Monday, April 4 by 4 pm.
  • Department of Biology
    Contact Anna G. Smith. Cost to print a 36”h x 48”w poster is $30 on glossy paper. Poster must be emailed in PDF or PowerPoint format, 48 hours in advance.  Students need to bring exact change with them and pay in cash when they pick up the poster. There is currently no requirement of a minimum number of posters per batch.
  • Chemistry and Biochemistry Department
    Contact Karen Burton. Your printing request should include the latest date you need your poster and must be submitted at least 3 days prior to deadline. Subject line on the emailed request should be “Printing Request”. Cost is $30.00 for 36”h x 48”w. No manipulation of the poster size, images, or data should be required and ensure it meets your approval before submitting. Submit in PowerPoint or PDF format. Posters will be rejected if any of the above conditions are not met.
  • School of Health & Human Sciences
    Available only to students in programs in HHS.  To ensure that posters are printed in time for the Graduate Research and Creativity Expo, they must be submitted to department administrative assistants no later than March 18, 2015. The cost of $15 per poster will be charged to your department/program.
  • Spartan Printing
    The price for a 36”h x 48”w poster is:  bond paper = $ 34.32; matte paper = $ 56.16, gloss paper = $92.04. Visit to enter the job online; click on “Student Printing” and then click on “Express Large Poster Form”. Be sure to create the graphic file to the size 36”h x 48”w.  Spartan Printing prefers PDF’s but can accept PowerPoint and Word. No matter what program is used, students need to be sure to make the file is 36”high x 48”wide.
  • Online Option
    Online option link. Estimated cost to print a 36”h x 48”w” glossy, full-color poster is $45.94 plus shipping. Printed from your PowerPoint or PDF file; most posters ordered by noon Central Time are printed on the same business day.

Communicating Beyond Your Discipline Workshop: Practice for the Research Expo

All Communicating Beyond Your Discipline workshops will be hosted in The Graduate School Admissions Office lounge at 500 Forest Building (one story brick building between Mossman and the EUC)

Wednesday, February 10, 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Thursday, February 11, 3:30 – 4:30 pm

Tuesday, February 16, 10:30 -11:30 pm

Registration for these workshops is open to UNCG Graduate Students registered to participate in the 2016 Graduate Research and Creativity Expo.

Join The Graduate School for a hands-on workshop in which participants will help critique one another on the ability to discuss research with individuals outside your discipline. Come prepared to give a 2 minute “Elevator Speech” about your research and/or a draft of some of the language for your research poster.

Assistance with your slide and/or presentation

  • The Digital Media Commons

The Digital Media Commons can help you with your technology needs! Visit our desk in the lower level of the library, open seven days a week, for assistance when you need it with questions about multimedia technology. Or, simply use/reserve our spaces to work on your presentation. You can also make an appointment with staff if you have questions concerning images that can be used in your slide or if you are new to using PowerPoint. We also have a Presentation Practice Room you can reserve (see the reservation widget on the library homepage) to practice your talk, record your session, watch, and review. Contact or visit our website. (

  • The Digital ACT Studio

Want help designing your poster or PowerPoint presentation? The Digital ACT Studio can assist you on the effectiveness of your presentation. We can provide feedback on whether or not you are effectively reaching your audience, and if your project is rhetorically and aesthetically compelling.

Our consultants are professionally trained to help you create stronger, rhetorically and aesthetically effective digital projects by engaging in one-on-one conversations that focus on shared knowledge and expertise. At the Digital ACT Studio, you can receive feedback on creating appropriate, pedagogically effective posters and presentations.

The Digital ACT Studio is open Monday-Wednesday 9am-7pm, Thursday 9am-6pm, and Friday 9am-1pm.  Walk in or schedule a 30 minute or 1 hour appointment today!

For more information about our practices, please visit our website: Contact us at:

  • The University Speaking Center

The University Speaking Center provides consultation support and instructional workshop services for UNCG students, faculty, employees, and members of the Greensboro community. Our support is designed to help speakers further develop their own oral communication confidence and competence. We provide peer-to-peer feedback, guidance, and other support in the areas of public speaking preparation and delivery, interpersonal communication, and group or team communication.

The Speaking Center is located along with the Writing Center in 3211 MHRA. We are on the third floor. MHRA is on the corner of Forest and Spring Garden – across the street from the Mossman Building.

For more information, please visit:

Please note: some items require the Adobe Acrobat PDF Reader, which can be downloaded from the Adobe website.

 2015 Winners!

Creative Arts:

Karen S. Thomas, Department of Music Education
“Musicians’ Earplugs: Does Their Use Affect Performance or Listeners’ Perceptions?”

Faculty Mentors: Dr. Donald Hodges, Dr. Sandra Teglas

Health Sciences:

Lauren West, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
“Nutritional Manipulation of HIV/AIDS: The Effects of Ergothioneine and Cultural Complementary and Alternative Medicines on HIV”

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Ethan Will Taylor


Mardita Murphy, Department of Interior Architecture
“The Kirkbride Plan: A History of Psychiatric Medicine and its Reflection on 19th Century Architecture”

Faculty Mentor: Mrs. Jo R. Leimenstoll

Natural, Physical, and Mathematical Sciences:

Vincent P. Sica, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
“Direct Chemical Analysis of Fungal Cultures”

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Nicholas H. Oberlies

Leselie Locklear - Creativity Expo

Professional Programs:

Leslie Locklear, Department of Educational Leadership & Cultural Foundations

“Walking in Two Worlds: Culturally Responsive Teaching for Native American Students”

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Silvia Bettez

Social Sciences:

Sarah Sperry, Department of Psychology
“Measuring the Validity and Psychometric Properties of a Short Form of the Hypomanic Personality Scale”

Faculty Mentor: Dr. Thomas Kwapil

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