Research Presentations

Through student research presentations, the SACNAS conference equips young researchers with the skills and mentoring you need to be successful on your STEM journey. Accepted applicants will have the opportunity to refine presentation skills, receive one-on-one mentoring and feedback on research, and connect with a supportive community of peers, mentors, and role models throughout the conference.

Important Dates

Mark Your Calendar

Application Period Opens

March 10 at 9am PT

June 9 at 9am PT

Application Deadline

May 21 at 5pm PT

July 9 at 5pm PT

Notification Date

June 18

August 20

Registration Deadline

August 30

September 10


Applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements to be considered for a research presentation in the spring: 

✓ Be a current SACNAS student-level member or postdoc-level member before applying for a research presentation. Sign-up or sign-in here.

✓ Be at least 18 years of age (at the time of the conference) .

✓ Be one of the following at the time of submission: community college, undergraduate, post baccalaureate, graduate student, or post-doctoral researcher.

  • Community college, undergraduate, and post baccalaureate students can apply for a poster presentation  
  • Graduate students can apply for a poster or oral presentation (choose one)  
  • Post-doctoral researchers can apply for an oral presentation 

Note: Being accepted to present does NOT provide you a free registration, nor automatically qualify you for a SACNAS travel scholarship. All applicants must follow the below guidelines to be considered for a research presentation at the 2021 SACNAS conference:  

1.  A complete SACNAS research presentation application will contain: 

  • Title of Abstract 
  • A complete abstract (Word limit is 250 maximum), which includes: 
  • A hypothesis or statement about the problem under investigation 
  • A statement of the experimental methods/materials used 
  • Results provided in summary form (even if preliminary) 
  • Conclusion

Note: No graphics or schema (charts) are allowed. Do not add citations in your abstract. 

  • The full names and degrees of each author (Include the order of authors) 
  • Approval from your principal investigator (PI) for submission and publication of your abstract 

2. Applications must be received through the online abstract submission system by July 9, 2021, 5:00 PM Pacific Time

  • No email or late submissions will be accepted (It is recommended that you submit your abstract with ample time prior to the deadline to avoid any technical issues) 
  • All submissions are final.  

TIP: Double check for grammatical errors before submitting your application. 

  • Only one abstract submission per student is acceptable. (A student with multiple applications will automatically be rejected) 

3. Students working on the same research project are required to submit an abstract written in their own words. If identical abstracts are submitted, all applications will be immediately disqualified from 2021 SACNAS. 

4. If you did your research as an undergraduate student but will be a graduate student in Fall 2021, please submit an undergraduate application. 

5. Graduate students who have previously given an oral presentation at a SACNAS conference are not eligible to apply for an oral presentation. However, they are encouraged to apply for a poster presentation. Graduate students who have never given an oral presentation at a SACNAS conference are welcome to submit an application for an oral presentation. 

1. Each abstract will be reviewed by independent scientific reviewers. 

2. Abstract submissions (poster and oral) are reviewed based on the criteria outlined below: 

  • Title that effectively identifies the research project 
  • Use of correct grammar and scientific terminology 
  • Explanation of why the research was conducted, while clearly stating the hypothesis, question, purpose, and aim or goal 
  • Briefly discuss how the study was conducted (methods) 
  • Describe the project’s results (or anticipated results) and project impact 


3. The final decision on acceptance to present is made on the basis of the average score from reviewers. All abstract review decisions are final.

  • No dual presenters with the same poster are allowed. The purpose for presenting a poster is to allow you to have a one-on-one conversation with a mentor judge and to practice presenting your research on your own. No exceptions!

Abstract Application Components 

Q1: If I submit my abstract application does that mean I automatically applied for the travel scholarship or vice versa? 

A: No. If you would like to apply for a SACNAS travel scholarship, you must submit a separate application for a SACNAS travel scholarship. 

Q2: Can I present my research with a partner who worked on the same project? 

A: No. We do not allow dual presenters with the same poster. The purpose for presenting a poster is to allow you to have a one-on-one conversation with a mentor judge and to practice presenting your research on your own. 

Q3: If there are two presenters working on the same project, can we both submit the same abstract? 

A: No. You may not submit the same abstract. Each applicant must submit an abstract written in their own words. Note: If identical abstracts are submitted, all applications will be immediately disqualified from presenting at the 2021 SACNAS conference. 

Poster/Oral Presentation Information 

Q1: What size poster board will be available? 

A: The board itself is 8’ (feet) x 4’ (feet). Keep in mind your audience should be able to read your poster from 4 (four) feet away. We recommend your poster size be either 48″ (inches) x 32″ (inches) or 48″ (inches) x 42″ (inches). 

Q2: Am I required to have my abstract on my poster? 

A: No, but check with your PI for their preference. 

Q3: Can SACNAS reimburse me for printing my poster? 

A: No. Unfortunately, SACNAS cannot reimburse you for ANY printing or shipping pertaining to your poster. 

Q4: Can I carry my poster on a plane? 

A: Yes. You will have to count it as one of your carry-ons. We recommend you put your poster in a plastic tube to avoid damage. Be sure to write your contact information on the poster in case it is lost or misplaced. 

Q5: What happens to my poster if I do not take it down? 

A: SACNAS is not responsible for posters that have not been taken down at the designated time; unclaimed posters will be discarded. 

Q6: Do I need to stay by my poster during the two-hour session? 

A: Yes. You need to stand by your poster for the entire two hours. This provides a great opportunity for private interactions with your judge as well as other conference attendees. 

Q7: What time do I set up my poster? 

A: Your poster set-up time will be sent to you in a final email if you are accepted as a presenter. All supplies necessary for hanging your poster (push pins) will be made available to you at the conference. 

Q8: Do I need to present on Thursday and Friday? 

A: No. You will only be allowed to present on one of the two days. Your assigned date will be emailed to you. If you do not receive your assigned date three weeks before the conference, please email

Q9: How long should my poster presentation be? 

A: Your poster presentation should be no more than 10 minutes. Extra time can be allocated for 

questions and answers. 

Q10: How long should my oral presentation be? 

A: Your oral presentation should be 15 minutes, including questions and answers. 

Conference Registrations/Abstract Cancellation 

Q1: What is the deadline for accepting the invitation to present at the 2021 SACNAS conference? 

A: Once notified you have been accepted to present you will be given a deadline to accept your presentation and a deadline to register for the conference, via email. If you do not accept or register on time you will be automatically disqualified from presenting at the 2021 SACNAS conference. 

Q2: What should I do if I can’t present and need to cancel my abstract? 

A: Immediately contact us at to cancel your presentation. We will notify your mentor/PI that you will not present at the 2021 SACNAS conference. 

Conference Quick Links


Email or call 1-877-SACNAS-1