The start of the new academic year is a time to explore new opportunities, especially research opportunities. Grover's article in this issue (see page 18
), and articles in past issues of Eye on Psi Chi
have emphasized the benefits of research experience for employment and graduate school (Landrum, 2002; LaRoche, 2004). To help you with your research endeavors, Psi Chi offers grants to support your research. The Undergraduate Research Grants
provide up to $1,500 each to defray research expenses. The Thelma Hunt Grants
offer up to $3,000 each to assist with research directly related to Psi Chi. The SuperLab Research Grants
provide SuperLab software and a response pad to assist with data collection. The deadline for applying for these grants is October 1. See the grant cover sheets
in this issue of Eye on Psi Chi
or on the Psi Chi website (www.psichi.org)
for more information about these grants. Conducting research is only one part of the research enterprise, however. It is also important to share your research results with others. Now is the time to start planning to present your research!Presentation Opportunities
Psi Chi sponsors student research presentations at all the spring regional conventions and at the national APA and APS conventions. The deadline for submitting presentation proposals
for APA and APS is December 1. The deadlines for submitting proposals to the regional conventions are between early-October and mid-January. Your Psi Chi Regional Vice-President will send information to chapters about the deadline and procedures for submitting proposals to your regional convention. Also check the convention section
of the Psi Chi website for information about each convention. Presenting research at conventions gives you an opportunity to enhance your presentation skills, learn about cutting-edge research in psychology, and network with psychologists from around the country. It also gives you the chance to receive one of Psi Chi's awards for the best research papers and posters presented at the regional and national conventions! Winners of the regional awards receive $300. Winners of the national awards receive $300 (undergraduate student research) or $500 (graduate student research). Read the convention submission instructions carefully so that your research is eligible for a research award.
If your chapter wants to organize its own student research conference, Psi Chi can help. The Undergraduate Psychology Research Conference Grants
provide up to $1,000 each to defray the cost of a local or regional conference that includes participants from at least three schools. The deadline for these grant applications is October 1.
Tips for Effective Multimedia Presentations
As you prepare your presentation proposal, you should start thinking about how you will present your research to others. The Psi Chi website offers excellent tips on organizing and presenting paper and poster presentations (www.psichi.org/conventions/tips.asp
). Many presenters use multimedia presentations so you should also consider what the research tells us about using multimedia presentations effectively. It is easy to get caught up in using as many multimedia features as possible to make the presentation unique and engaging, but research suggests that these features do not necessarily make your presentation more effective and may actually detract from the presentation, particularly if you use them indiscriminately (Mayer, 2001). Daniel (2005) and Ludwig, Daniel, Froman, and Andreoli Mathie (2004) reviewed the research on designing and using multimedia presentations for classroom instruction and offered recommendations to instructors. Their recommendations also apply to your convention presentations and class presentations. To the right
is a brief summary of their recommendations.
As you prepare your research presentation, consider submitting your research manuscript to the Psi Chi Journal of Undergraduate Research
or to one of the Psi Chi research award competitions. See the Psi Chi website for information about publishing in the Psi Chi journal (www.psichi.org/pubs/journal/submissions.asp
) and about Psi Chi's research awards. I encourage you to take advantage of Psi Chi's research presentation, publication, and award opportunities. Best wishes for a productive and successful academic year.
>> www.psichi.org/pubs/journal/submissions.aspPresentation Tips
- Minimize the text on each slide. Use short phrases in bullet points rather than full sentences. Try to limit the number of bullets to three or four per slide.
- Do not read the text on each slide to the audience—audiences find this annoying. Your narration is what is most important and informative. The text should highlight your main points—it should not be your presentation.
- Use plain fonts and a font size that can be read easily from the back of the room.
- Use plain backgrounds that do not distract from your message and that provide good contrast with the text. In well-lit rooms use a dark background with light text. In dark rooms use a light background with dark text.
- Use pictures, clip art, and video clips only if they are directly relevant to your message—irrelevant illustrations are distracting.
- Avoid the use of irrelevant sounds and animations—they distract from your message.
- Uses simple transitions from one slide to the next.
- Do not turn your back on the audience to read or look at your slides.
Daniel, D. B. (2005). How to ruin a perfectly good lecture. In B. Perlman, L. I. McCann, & W. Buskist (Eds.), Voices of experience: Memorable talks from the National Institute on the Teaching of Psychology
(Vol. 1, pp. 119-130). Washington, DC: American Psychological Society (now the Association for Psychological Science).
Landrum, R. E. (2002, Winter). Maximizing undergraduate opportunities: The value of research and other experiences. Eye on Psi Chi, 6
LaRoche, K. (2004, Winter). Advantages of undergraduate research: A student's perspective. Eye on Psi Chi, 8
(2), 20-21, 69.
Ludwig, T. E., Daniel, D. B., Froman, R., & Andreoli Mathie, V. A. (2004). Using multimedia in classroom presentations: Best principles.
Retrieved July 13, 2006, from the Society for the Teaching of Psychology Website: http://teachpsych.lemoyne.edu/teachpsych/div/divindex.html
Mayer, R. E. (2001). Multimedia learning.
Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.