Frequently Asked Questions



art exhibit

Frequently Asked Questions about the RICE Symposium

What do you mean by “recent” academic work, internship experiences, and creative endeavors?

Recent academic work refers to work done since Spring Term of last year, and we include:
     • art exhibitions
     • creative writing
     • dance
     • film and media
     • literary readings
     • musical performance
     • research
     • seminar papers
     • service-learning
     • short scholarly talks
     • significant class projects
     • theater and performance art

Who can be a presenter?

Students in all disciplines and all classes may present work pursued in a course (e.g., senior seminar project, lab research, art project, final paper), faculty-student research collaboration, internship, John C. Young fellowship, or off-campus study program.

What's in it for me, as a presenter?

You can gain valuable experience in delivering a public presentation of your work to a supportive crowd. You can list the presentation on your resume under “Research or Conference Presentations.” This type of experience is helpful for gaining admission to graduate school and professional programs (e.g., law school, medical school). Finally, you can be an important player in an event spotlighting the intellectual vitality of the Centre community!

Who will the audience be?

Your friends and classmates, faculty, alumni, staff, parents, incoming students, and interested community members.

What is an abstract and how do I write one?

An abstract is a brief statement of a paper or project, and it typically includes three to four parts.
First, it should include a statement of purpose (e.g., This paper examines the effect of. . ., This work analyzes the writings of . . ., Few studies examine the relationship between. . . ), and the statement should indicate the reasons for or significance of the work.
Second, information should be offered on the materials (or data) and methods used. For example, in creative projects, the author can share information on the source(s) of inspiration and methods of construction; in research projects, the author can share information on the data sources and analysis methods.
Third, the author should offer a brief summary of the findings, product, or conclusions.
In some cases, a fourth and final section can offer information on the implications of the work for policy or practice. Students are encouraged to consult with their faculty mentors on drafting and finalizing their abstracts.

For sample abstracts and additional information, visit the following websites:

University of California-Berkeley — How to Write an Abstract (PDF)
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill — Writing an Abstract

How do I know whether to present my research project in a paper session or in the poster session?

Generally speaking, there are two ways to present research at academic conferences:
1) in a paper session with 4-5 presenters giving brief talks about their research (usually on related topics), or
2) in a poster session with 20-100 presenters standing in front of their professionally printed posters and talking about their work to conference attendees.
In both types of presentations, the researcher has drafted a paper and tried to summarize the research. Poster presentations tend to work best when the researcher wants to summarize the findings in graphs, charts, or tables.

How do I register for the RICE Symposium?

To register, complete the online ABSTRACT SUBMISSION FORM, which is linked from the menu above. Make sure to provide an abstract of not more than 150 words describing your work. If you have any particular A/V or display needs, you MUST let us know so you won’t be caught in a media mishap. You need to tell us if you need a specialized venue, such as a dance floor or a gallery space. Remember you must have your faculty mentor complete an approval form in order to present at RICE!

Who do I contact if I have any questions?

Please remember that your faculty mentor knows your work best and can help you with questions that are not answered here. You may also contact or the contacts listed in the CONTACTS link in the menu above, left.