NARST Graduate Student Research Symposium: 2020 Call for Abstracts

Author: Jessica Karch

The NARST Graduate Student Committee is excited to announce a call for abstracts for the 2020 Graduate Student Research Symposium at the NARST International Conference in Portland, Oregon. Now in its third year, this program is a unique opportunity for graduate students to present and receive feedback on their works-in-progress in an intimate poster session. Any current graduate student conducting research related to STEM or science education is invited and encouraged to submit an abstract. NARST membership is encouraged, but not required to participate in the Symposium.

Why should I submit?
Receive individualized feedback from mentors. Each graduate student presenter at the Research Symposium is matched with an advanced colleague in science education based on their overlapping research interests. The mentor is asked to give written feedback on the submitted conference proposal, as well as meet with their mentee at the NARST conference. Present work no matter what stage of your dissertation you are at. The Graduate Student Research Symposium is a unique opportunity to present at NARST on works-in-progress. Last year, a third of submissions came from graduate students who did not submit a proposal to the general NARST call for proposals, and 54% of submissions came from students at the pre-dissertation stage. Make connections with peers and senior colleagues. Participants in previous years found that one of the biggest takeaways from the Symposium was making new connections with colleagues in the field.

Submission Guidelines:
500-word abstract (does not include references)
Abstracts should include the following: Title, Subject/Problem, Design or Procedure, Analyses and Findings, Contributions or Significance
Example works-in-progress include literature review, research design and question development, data collection and analysis, dissertation analysis and writing, etc.
Upon acceptance, a conference paper (10-15 pages double spaced not including references) will be due mid-February

Abstracts and required information can be submitted at the following link:

Abstracts due: November 8, 2019
Notification of decision: December 20, 2019
Conference paper due: February 15, 2020 (10-15 pages, double spaced, 12pt font, length does not include references)

Frequently Asked Questions
See answers to frequently asked questions, such as what counts as a work-in-progress, mentor selection, and more from our 2018 blog post:

Highlights from the 2019 Graduate Student Research Symposium
We received nearly twice as many submissions for our 2019 Symposium as we did in 2018. 20 graduate students and 18 mentors participated. 54% of submissions came from students who were pre-dissertation, and 34% came from students at the dissertation stage. 36% of students who submitted an abstract to our symposium did not submit a proposal to the general conference.

NARST Graduate students and mentors discussing at their posters

Lynne Zummo, Stanford, (far left) explains her research to symposium attendees

Jordan Henley, UGA, (right) discussing her literature review with Carlson Coogler, UA, and Anna Schneider, UGA.

Additional Questions? Email us at

NARST Graduate Student Research Symposium Sub-Committee:
Ay├ža K. Fackler
Kathryn Green
Christa Haverly
Jessica Karch
Melanie Kinskey
Timothy Klavon