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An abstract is a concise, independent summary of your research. By reading the abstract, a reader should learn the research question, the approach used to answer that question, and relevant findings.

General Guidelines

  • The abstract must be written as one paragraph 
  • The abstract should not exceed 250 words
  • Presentation titles, name of author(s), advisor(s), and institution must be included in the abstract
  • The abstract should not contain formal citations to published work or literature 
  • Footnotes should not be included, although a funding acknowledgement may be included at the end of the abstract
  • While technical terms and scientific formulas are appropriate, avoid using abbreviations in the abstract unless the abbreviation is clearly explained
  • A good abstract contains the following elements:
    1. Clear research statement/hypothesis
    2. Brief statement of research methodologies
    3. Brief statement of research conclusions
    4. Clear sense of how the research fits into the bigger picture

Sample Abstracts

These sample abstracts from award winning presentations may provide useful examples.