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Preparing the Presentation

Students submitting research papers will be selected for one of two types of presentations: Oral Presentation or Poster Presentation.


Oral Presentation

If your research paper is one of the top selected, you will be invited to give an oral presentation at the TJSHS in front of an audience of your peers and scientists who are serving as judges. Only those giving oral presentations will be eligible to receive scholarships at the regional level.

The research presentation must not exceed 12 minutes and will be followed by a maximum 6-minute question-and-answer period conducted by the moderators. A session moderator will aid the student speaker in maintaining this schedule and in fielding questions from the audience and judges. The procedure for maintaining the time includes a 10-minute signal for the student, and finally a 12-minute signal. At the 12-minute point, the student speaker must stop the presentation even if he or she has not finished.

After the judges have had an opportunity to ask questions, the moderator may open the floor to questions from the audience if time permits. During the 6 minutes of questioning, the speaker should repeat a question before answering so the audience can understand the entire dialogue. At their discretion, the judges may conduct an interview in private with each presenter for an additional 10 minutes after all presentations have been given before determining the final evaluation scores.

Use of Audio Visuals

  • Rule 1: Students must prepare their presentation in PowerPoint or Google Slides format. All students will be asked to turn their final presentation in prior to the beginning of the first oral presentation.
  • Rule 2: The TJSHS will provide the equipment necessary for students to present their research. This will include a laptop, clicker, screen/projector, and any other necessary AV needs. Special requests for other equipment or media must be made ahead of time to prep@utk.edu.
  • Rule 3: The student presenter must operate all presentation equipment during the presentation. Teachers will not be allowed to assist the students. Student speakers may have assistance in setting up their presentation, but may not have any assistance once the presentation starts. Students are recommended to practice their presentations in advance.
  • Rule 4: Students may not have any written handouts during their presentation. Research apparatus may be used if it is integral to the presentation and only if the apparatus is handheld.

Hints for the Oral Presentation

  • You are the expert. No one in the audience knows as much about your research investigation as you. Therefore, remember to explain your research in enough detail so the audience will understand what you did, how you did it, and what you learned.
  • Clearly state your hypotheses and the rationale for your experimental approach. At the conclusion of your talk, summarize the outcomes and conclusions of your work.
  • Whenever possible, avoid jargon or unnecessary terminology. If it is essential to use specialized terms, remember to explain the specialized term briefly. Give your audience enough time to understand what you are trying to convey.
  • Use graphs, tables and other visual representation to help explain your results. Keep them simple and uncluttered. Focus on important information; for example, remember to name the variables on both axes of a graph, and state the significance of the position and shape of the graph line.
  • Deliver your presentation at a comfortable pace. It helps to practice your presentation before a non-specialized audience in order to perfect the presentation and timing. Do listen to the advice of your non-specialized audience but also get help from a teacher or other advisers.

Poster Presentation

Posters should be prepared in a manner that summarizes the findings presented in a written paper, such as:

  1. Introduction and statement of the problem
  2. Abstract
  3. Objectives
  4. Materials and methods
  5. Results and figures
  6. Discussion and conclusions
  7. Literature references
  8. Acknowledgements and contact information

Guidelines

Posters for competition must include and/or meet the following standards:

  • The Title should be at least one inch (72 pts) in height. The student’s name and regional should be included and should be (48 pts). All other lettering should be in 24-point font size. (Point size indicated above is suggested size only).
  • The poster should be balanced and organized in a logical, sequential order.
  • Keep the amount of text to a minimum.
  • There should be more emphasis on graphics, tables, charts, and graphs. These items should be cited on the poster board.
  • Photographs in addition to other illustrations may be used. Figures may be in color.

Poster Templates

Poster template (Google Slides)

Poster template (PowerPoint)

*you are not required to use the above templates, they are simply for your reference as needed