Undergraduate Competitor Information

Saturday, March 28, 2015, in the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, East Registration Area (located on the Exhibit Hall Level on the side of the building that faces the Westin Hotel).
Poster Competition Judging Rubric


  1. An abstract submitted to the Experimental Biology Meeting, by the November 6th deadline, will be programmed for poster presentation on the Sunday, Monday or Tuesday of the meeting.  These ASBMB poster sessions take place on the exhibit hall floor, include all academic and career levels, and reflect a cross-section of the entire attendee population.  Programming notifications, including the date and time of the presentation, will be communicated to the first/presenting author and the abstract sponsor in late January.
  2. ASBMB offers undergraduate students an opportunity to also participate in the poster competition, an optional event.  Because the poster competition is scheduled on Saturday, this is an excellent opportunity for students to practice their poster presentations, amongst their peers, prior to presenting during the main EB meeting.  Students participating in the ASBMB Undergraduate Student Research Poster Competition are expected to fulfill the presentation obligation, as scheduled, during the main EB meeting.

Poster Competition Eligibility

  • Abstracts must be submitted to an ASBMB topic category, #2000-2390.
  • Abstracts must be ‘successfully submitted,’ by the November 6th Abstract Submission Deadline.
  • First/presenting author status on the abstract submission must be identified as an 'Undergraduate’ student in order to receive an invitation to the competition.
  • Each participant must be the first author of a unique abstract submission.  Only the first author listed on the abstract can compete.  NO ‘co-first authors’ permitted.
  • Late breaking abstracts and abstracts submitted to other societies’ topic categories are not eligible to participate in this competition.
  • Incomplete and pending payment status abstracts will not be invited or programmed for presentation.
  • Undergraduate authors of late-breaking abstracts are welcome to attend the event, but cannot compete/present.
  • Participant must be an undergraduate. (December, 2014 graduates that have not already enrolled in a Graduate Program and Spring 2015 graduates are eligible to participate in the competition.)

Poster Competition Participation Invitation and Rules

  • Only students registered in advance for the competition will be allowed to participate and have their posters judged.
  • RSVP’ing to the competition invitation is required to secure a spot in the competition.  Invitations will be emailed to eligible students in January.
    • Please note: the RSVP does not secure a spot in the competition. Due to limited space, only 225 students may participate. Those who are selected to participate will be sent a confirmation of participation on February 11, 2015. 
  • Once all competition slots have been filled, a waitlist will be available.
  • Waitlisted students are not guaranteed a spot in the competition.  Waitlisted students will be notified two weeks prior to the competition if a confirmed board is available.
  • Posters must remain on display from 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM, NO Exceptions.
  • Participants must be present for the entirety of the scheduled competition and actively participate, even when not manning/presenting a poster. View other posters, ask questions about the research and graduate program exhibitors when not manning a poster.
  • Poster manning times and poster board numbers are assigned at check-in the day of the competition.

Meeting Registration

Undergraduate students receive free meeting registration.  Advance registration is available at www.experimentalbiology.org.  
Onsite verification of undergraduate student status is required as described on the EB Meeting Registration site.  
Registration opens at 7:00 am on Saturday for badge pick up.

IMPORTANT: Participants should consider airline schedules to insure an on time arrival for the Poster Competition.  

What you can expect

  • You've got your research down, now make sure you eat breakfast the morning of the competition so you have energy and focus.
  • There is no specific dress code required, however, we encourage you to take this event seriously and dress in neat, clean attire and be appropriately groomed.  Honestly, you'll be better off in comfortable shoes because you'll be doing a lot of walking around the convention center.
  • Arrive at the Convention Center early on Saturday so you have enough time to pick up your meeting badge.  Saturday is a busy day at registration.
  • Proceed to the main EB registration area in the lobby.  Convention Center staff will direct you, just ask.
  • Make sure you bring your verification of undergraduate student status (student ID or letter from the Dept Chair).  Pick up your meeting badge, meeting bag and meeting program.
  • Proceed to the Competition location (will be provided to competitors in a future email) and find the check in desk
  • Check in is available beginning at Noon.  Don't arrive early at the competition check-in desk because we're trying to get everything set up in anticipation of your arrival at Noon.
  • There is an orientation session beginning at 11:30 am (details on our website Undergraduate Events) with lots of helpful information - go to the orientation before checking in at the competition.
  • If you have your badge and some extra time before the competition gets underway, find a bite to eat or get acclimated with the layout of the Convention Center.
  • When you arrive at check in, competitor packets will be set up alphabetically by last name.  Collect your packet and an event program.
  • Listen to any additional instructions from the ASBMB staff manning the registration table.
  • Look at the label on the outside of the packet, it has your board number (for the competition only) and manning time for the poster competition.
  • Inside the packet you'll find your certificate of participation (save this for your professional portfolio) and a copy of the judging rubric.  The rubric will also be emailed to competitors in advance of the event.
  • The program will include the schedule of events for the competition (1:00 pm - 4:30 pm, plus the Undergraduate Workshop immediately following the competition.)
  • Find your board number and set up your poster.  Push pins will be available for your use.
  • If you have a little extra time, take a lap around the poster boards to walk off any nervous energy.
  • Introduce yourself to your poster board neighbors, find out what school they're from, their year, what they plan to do after they graduate, have they ever been to Boston before, and inquire about their research (This is a good opportunity to practice a little before the competition starts).
  • At 1:00 pm, the organizers will make an announcement with general information about the competition format.  Then the judges will travel around and visit the various posters.  
  • There will be non-competing students and other attendees who stop by the poster competition.  Engage with as many people as you can to get more and more practice communicating your research.
  • There will be several Graduate Program Exhibitors on hand - you will see the representatives at their tables and walking around the posters.  We encourage you to explore these exhibit tables and ask questions about their programs.  They usually have free stuff to give away - bonus!
  • At the mid-way point of the competition, there is a networking refreshment break.  The organizers will make an announcement when it's time for the break.  Enjoy the chaos as everyone runs for the snacks.  Don't forget to visit some of the Graduate Program Exhibitors or check out some of the posters.
  • The competition will resume and it's important to remember, when you are not manning your poster, you are expected to remain at the competition in support of the competitors who stuck around while you were manning your poster.  Walk around and explore the interesting research going on at other institutions around the country.  Ask questions and meet other students.
  • At the conclusion of the competition, the organizers will make an announcement.
  • Remove your poster promptly.  You'll need it for your presentation during the main EB meeting.  We are not responsible for posters that are left behind (sad face).
  • From the competition, head on over to the Undergraduate Workshop (details on the website Undergraduate Events)
  • Following the workshop is the ASBMB Opening Lecture at 6:00 PM.  This is the official kick off to the meeting and is followed by the Opening Reception.
  • You'll be exhausted by the end of Saturday.  
  • Winners of the competition will be announced on Sunday during the Award for Exemplary Contributions to Education Lecture @ 12:15.  Consult the program for the location.
  • Following the award lecture, competitors will be able to pick up feedback from the judges (details on where to pick up feedback forms will be provided onsite).
  • Good luck, and have a great time!

Awards Presentation

Awards will be presented in a ceremony scheduled on the Sunday of the meeting, at the ASBMB Award for Exemplary Contributions to Education Lecture, beginning at 12:15 PM.
Check the program for the location within the Convention Center.
Some posters will unavoidably be scheduled for presentation during the main meeting in conflict with the Awards Ceremony.  We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.  
All poster competition participants, not scheduled to present their posters in the main meeting during this time, and their mentors are expected to attend.