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Get support for your submission!

Take advantage of our Writing Cafés to work on your submission with an Academic Skills Adviser on hand to help.

Guidance and training

Not every student has had chance to communicate their work through a poster or an abstract on their course. In order to make the showcase accessible to all students, we have collated some guidance and online training materials in the sections below for each type of submission you can make to the showcase. 

The Study Zone is also here to support you in workshops and a dedicated writing cafe:

Effective Research Posters Workshop - 24 November 10:00-11:00

Abstract Writing Workshop - 1 December 10:00-11:00

Undergraduate Research Showcase Writing Cafe - 2 December 13:00-14:00

Book onto the workshops here and join us at our informal writing cafe through the link on ELE.

Entries will be judged on a range of criteria including accuracy, originality, clear communication of research findings or argument presented, and accessibility to a wide audience. Posters will also be judged on creativity and visual aesthetic. 

While putting the presentation together, it’s been useful to think about what style of presentation works best. So being cautious of things like not putting too many words in and having images and visual representations of what you’re trying to do. It’s been really useful for networking, being able to talk to people that are in your subject area and find out what kind of research has been going on at an undergraduate level and similar things. I think it has helped my confidence with public speaking. I’ve never spoken to a group of people that big before, [around] 40-50 people. Also, having the opportunity to be questioned on your research has given me an ability to answer questions on-the-go and think about things in a different way to how I would usually, but being cautious of how the public and wider undergraduate population see the things I’ve been doing.” 

Ben Fisher, Biosciences

 When designing your poster, it must be in A0 portrait or A1 landscape orientation as required for BCUR. To make sure your poster meets this requirement, you can use our blank ‌A0 Research Poster Template or A1 Research Poster Template‌, which has been designed for use in Microsoft PowerPoint and sized accordingly. 

Please also ensure that you have the University's logo in the top left corner, and that you adhere to the Design studio's guidance on how to use this. 

As well as fitting your content into the limited space, there are lots of other important things to consider when designing a research poster, such as colour, sizing, fonts, etc., and how these influence the effectiveness and accessibility of your key messages. You will be judged on all aspects of your poster, so it is worth taking the time to get everything right. 

We have designed a short series of online guidance resources which take you through every stage of the design process, including tips for presenting your poster on the day. These resources are available on Study Zone Digital. 

In addition to our online training, there is lots of information and resources available on the internet. Take a look at ourPoster Guidance which outlines what makes a good research poster, especially in the context of our poster exhibition. 

To gain a better idea of what successful entrants to the Showcase have looked like over the last couple of years, we have composed a collection of previous submissions, spotlighting previously shortlisted posters and winning posters. 

An abstract is a very short summary of a piece of research, the larger form of which can be presented in full through a presentation or journal paper.  

Your abstract for this showcase must not be longer than 250 words. It should summarise your research and highlight any important methodology and details of why the research is significant or noteworthy. You should write simply and succinctly, avoiding flowery and inaccessible language.  

There is plenty of information online about writing a good abstract. For example, check out the International Studies Association guidance on this. 

Entering an abstract is a great way to get involved with the showcase if you want to share your research, but you've not completed it yet. For example, those working on their final year dissertations will be in this situation. 

Your abstract will form the basis for a presentation on your completed research, but this will not take place until the British Conference of Undergraduate Research, held in April 2021. This usually coincides with the final writing up/editing stage of your work, so will be the perfect time to present it in more detail.  

As well as the abstract itself, we are keen to liven up the Showcase Exhibition through more interactive and colourful entries. When you complete the submission form, you are able to accompany your abstract with an image or picture with a descriptive caption, but we also welcome ideas of including any other multimedia outputs or resources to enhance your entry. If you would like to discuss this further, please contact the team: 

To gain a better idea of what successful entrants to the Showcase have looked like over the last couple of years, we have composed a collection of previous submissions, spotlighting previously shortlisted abstracts and winning abstracts.