Deadline extended for undergraduate research submissions

It’s not too late for Weber State University undergraduate students to show off all their hard work and research in their chosen fields, because the deadline has been extended for submissions for WSU’s Ninth Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium and Celebration. The symposium is put on by the Office of Undergraduate Research, and students may now submit until Feb. 19.

“The symposium is a way to celebrate our students and all of their research and hard work,” said Erin Daniels, the office manager with the Office of Undergraduate Research at WSU. “It’s a great way for students to be able to share their research, as well as learn what other students are doing.”

The symposium and celebration itself will take place March 25 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m., with events taking place in the ballrooms and atrium of the Shepherd Union Building.

“There are three different types of submissions or presentations,” Daniels said. “They can do oral, a poster, or performing or visual arts presentation. It can be anything; it can be research, scholarly, creative arts. We welcome all academic areas.”

Daniels said WSU hosted the National Conference on Undergraduate Research last year instead of the school holding its own symposium, so this year’s event will be the first since 2011. The symposium is popular among students; the 2011 event featured more than 60 projects and research from campus-wide colleges, including research projects on chorale settings, microfinance in Uganda, habitats of pygmy rabbits in Utah and representations of spatial languages.

Christopher Hoagstrom, who teaches zoology at WSU, sponsored and helped advise some students on their research for the 2011 symposium.

“I think, for the most part, the students get a lot out of it,” Hoagstrom said. “The ones who make it to the point where they’re presenting, they’ve usually worked pretty hard and they’ve learned a lot. You know, we don’t force them to present, so if they do it, it’s because they’re getting something out of the research.”

The event also offers undergraduate students the opportunity to present in an academic setting, and Hoagstrom said this type of research is important to WSU.

“The undergraduate research is critical,” Hoagstrom said. “It gives students lots of opportunities to really learn and get practical experience.”

Daniels said the deadline was extended to be sure students were able to submit.

“We had some problems with our submission form,” Daniels said. “There were just some issues and things weren’t transferring over correctly, and we had some students that contacted us and let us know that there were some problems.”

Daniels said students interested in more information about the symposium and celebration can visit the Office of Undergraduate Research’s website at Students interested must have a faculty sponsor and should submit an abstract of 200 words or less online. A sample abstract and the guidelines for oral presenters, poster presentation, and performing and visual arts presentations can also be found on the website.