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Call for proposals: Undergraduate Research Symposium

Undergraduate Research Symposium Header - Students with text "Undergraduate Research Symposium"

Call for proposals

Proposals for the third annual Undergraduate Research Symposium will be accepted from February 3 until February 24, 2020 via the submission form.

The Symposium will be held on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 on the SFU Burnaby campus. 

Who can apply?

The Symposium is an interdisciplinary forum, and students from all academic disciplines and units are welcome. Eligible students include undergraduates engaged in supervised research at SFU, including those who meet any of the following criteria:

  • are enrolled in SFU Honours,
  • have presented their work at SFU faculty- or department-sponsored research symposia,
  • participate in grant-funded research activities administered by SFU Research Services,
  • hold/have held an undergraduate student research award.

Interested undergraduate students should work closely with their supervisors on both the application and their presentations.

If you have any questions about eligibility, please email     

Presentation format

Presentations will be aimed at sharing, showcasing, and disseminating undergraduate academic research.

Students should give special consideration to how they will make their presentations engaging and accessible to an interdisciplinary audience from across the university.

Using a "5x5" model, five-minute presentations will be grouped into sessions of five student presenters, followed by a 15-minute moderated conversation focused on common themes to encourage interdisciplinary discourse.

Presenters are encouraged to use audio-visual materials to support their presentations. If you have special presentation requirements, we are happy to work with you on this, just please make sure you let us know about these requirements in your proposal.  

Application process

Once the call for proposals is open, submissions will be accepted through the webform. Complete submissions will include a brief abstract that outlines the project requirements, defined below. 

Applications will be reviewed by a sub-committee and presenters may be asked to make revisions to their proposals to better fit the Symposium criteria. 

Proposal decisions will be communicated via email. 

Application deadlines and proposal review timelines will be announced early in 2020. 

Project considerations 

Research projects may be quantitative, qualitative, conceptual/theoretical, or enacted/practice-based. Here are some prompts to think about when preparing your session proposal as well as your symposium presentation: 

  • a well-defined research question/hypothesis
    • what are you curious about or wanting to find out or explore through your research?
  • a literature review
    • what have you read and who are the other researchers who are working in this area?
  • a clearly stated methodology
    • what have you done in your research and how have you approached that work?
  • and research findings, realized or anticipated
    •  what have you found out or do you expect to find out through your research work?

Criteria for submission review and selection:

  • Clarity, coherence, and appropriate scope
  • Relevance and appropriateness to the Symposium’s goals
  • Accessible language and a clear proposed means of engaging a university-wide audience from across disciplines and subject areas
  • Contribution to academic research/disciplinary knowledge (potential or actual)


If you have questions about the submission or review process, please contact the Planning Committee at

*The Undergraduate Student Research Award Program funds undergraduates working in a graduate level research capacity for a term.