Abstract Guidelines and Submission

Before submitting a proposal, we ask that you read the following guidelines carefully. Then, use the online abstract submission form (C of I password required) to submit your abstract for consideration at the Student Research Conference.


Proposals will take the form of an abstract. The abstract should be limited to one paragraph of no more than 200 words in length and should include a clear explanation of the project, presentation, or performance.

You must have a faculty mentor for your abstract. 

Where appropriate the abstract should include a description of the methodology, an explanation of the steps by which you reached your conclusion and the general significance of the project. The selection committee realizes that some projects may not have a complete data set until near the time of presentation. In this case, a preliminary analysis must be submitted with the abstract.

The College of Idaho Student Research Conference is intended to provide a learning experience for all members of the CofI community, not just specialists in your field. The abstract and its title should be written in such a way as to pique the interest of, and be understood by, educated individuals outside your discipline.

If your project had a funding source, you should acknowledge this assistance in a line following the name of your faculty sponsor, for example: This project was funded by a NIH-INBRE research grant. If your work requires IRB approval, the approval must be done before you submit an abstract.

Selection criteria

Each proposal will be reviewed by a committee comprised of the C of I faculty. The Committee will either accept or reject the proposal, Rejected proposals are those deemed inappropriate for the conference or of insufficient quality or rigor. All rejected proposals will receive feedback from the reviewers. The Committee’s comments and actions concern the abstract, not the substance of the proposed research project, poster, or performance.

The following are three examples of concise, clear student abstracts:

Student 1.

Bizarre, Cruel, and Murderous: Dynastic Strife in the Family of Constantine the Great

In 326 C.E., the Roman Emperor Constantine I ( "the Great") executed first his son, Crispus, and then his wife, Fausta (Crispus' stepmother). Historians have interpreted this incident as anything from a tragic accident to a ruthless political purge. I propose a new hypothesis accounting for both deaths: a dynastic conflict between Fausta, acting on behalf of her own children, and Constantine's mother, Helena, acting on behalf of Crispus. Using Daniel Ogden's theory of "amphimetric strife," Fausta and Helena/Crispus can be placed in their proper context as rivals in a struggle for dynastic superiority. In addition to illuminating an ancient murder mystery, I will argue that Ogden's theory, outlined in his study of the Hellenistic world, Polygamy, Prostitutes, and Death, can be both properly and profitably applied to other periods.

Faculty Sponsor: XXXXXX

Student 2.

Paganini Grand Etude No. 2 in Eb Major by Franz Listz

Niccolo Paganini, one of the greatest virtuoso violinists of all time, gave a sensational performance in Paris of 1831 that profoundly influenced Franz Liszt. Paganini's performance of his Twenty-four Caprices for Violin inspired Liszt to revolutionize pianism completely, creating a new era of modern piano-techniques. Not only did Paganini and Liszt begin a tradition of solo performance by memory, but the technical demands of a performer were taken to a new level of difficulty. Using thematic material from Paganini's Caprices, Liszt formulated six grand etudes that can be used not only as a teaching element, but also to show off the virtuosic skills of the performer. Liszt incorporates difficult passage-work to help the performer develop technique in areas such as arpeggios, trills and octaves. A performance of Liszt's Paganini Grand Etude No. 2 in Eb will be given, followed by a brief question and answer session.

Faculty Sponsors: XXXXXXXXXXX

Student 3.

The effects of cadmium on apoptosis in cultured human osteosarcoma cells.

Cadmium is a known environmental toxin that accumulates in the body where it gives rise to adverse affects in humans. Research links human exposure to cadmium with bone diseases such as osteoporosis. The mechanisms by which cadmium exerts a direct effect on bone remain unclear. One possibility is that cadmium disrupts apoptosis, or programmed cell death. In normal bone tissue cells routinely undergo apoptosis. We hypothesize that cadmium alters this process by inducing apoptosis. Using a human osteoblast-like cell line (Saos-2), preliminary studies indicated cadmium exposure induced cell death. To investigate the role of apoptosis, Saos-2 cells were treated with 10 µM, 100 µM, or 200 µM CdCl2 for 3, 6, 12, 24, or 48 hours. Nuclear changes associated with apoptosis were evaluated using DAPI nuclear stain and a TUNEL assay. Another marker for apoptosis, annexin V, was used to evaluate membrane changes with fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry. Cadmium-induced apoptosis was observed in Saos-2 cells (% annexin V positive in control =11.2% ± 5.0, 12 hr 200 µM CdCl2=29.6% ± 13.4, 24 hr 200 µM CdCl2=33.4% ± 6.9). Future studies will investigate the specific cellular mediators of cadmium-induced apoptosis in bone cells.

Faculty Sponsor: XXXXXXXX