About the Poster Competition

The 2012 IGERT.org Video and Poster Competition will take place on May 22-25, 2012. This competition is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and facilitated by IGERT.org, a project run by TERC, a non-profit located in Cambridge MA. The video and online competition platform was created at TERC.

This year the competition includes both video and poster components, which reflects an expanding interest in using media to promote the understanding and dissemination of scientific ideas. Holding this competition online enables a greater number of IGERT faculty, trainees, project coordinators, and alumni to participate and to interact with presenters. In addition, members of the general public have the opportunity this year to interact with presenters and to "like" their favorite presentation on Facebook.

The competition features 114 presentations each made by a student or a team of students nominated from different IGERT Ph.D. programs. The work presented often transcends traditional disciplinary boundaries and addresses complex research problems of significant scientific and societal importance. The presenters have been asked to make their posters and videos intelligible to a general, scientifically literate audience.

Some of the presenters are early in their graduate studies; others are approaching graduation and may be seeking post-doctoral positions and other employment opportunities. You can find out more about the presenters by clicking their names, which will link to their bios.

We are grateful to the many IGERT faculty who volunteered to be judges for the competition. We have selected 50 judges and have taken care to avoid conflicts of interest. Hence judges may not be perfectly paired with their specific area of expertise. They will judge the videos and posters and presenters’ replies to judges’ queries. Judges will choose 20 of the 25 awards.

The IGERT.org community (faculty, trainees, program coordinators, and alumni) of currently funded and post-funded programs are encouraged to participate and to share their thoughts with presenters by commenting on videos and posters. Community members are also asked to select 4 presentations that they find most meritorious as their “Community Choice” votes. An additional 4 of the 25 awards will be chosen by “Community Choice”.

Guests, future employers, and interested members of the public are invited to browse the posters, watch the videos, and post comments to each of the presenters' discussions. To contact a presenter(s), click on their name to see their bio. This year, the public will also have the opportunity to choose 1 additional award in this competition as a way to select the presenter who was most effective in disseminating science to a broad audience. The presenter who receives the most "likes" on Facebook will be selected as this awardee.

Following the online event, the NSF 2012 IGERT PI Meeting will take place on May 30 – June 1, 2012 in Washington DC. Events at this meeting will stream LIVE on IGERT.org. All presenters will attend this conference and will take part in an in-person poster session. The 25 awardees will be announced on the last day of the conference in DC and shortly thereafter on this site.

After the competition, we will be sending a survey to all participants to learn from your experience. We look forward to hearing your feedback, and learning from it, as we think about how this may be done in the years ahead.

To see the archive of last year's competition, please visit the 2011 Poster Competition website.