Review Process Review Process

Abstract Review Process

The SACNAS Student Presentations Committee organizes activities related to the student scientific sessions. These sessions advance the organization's strategic efforts to support students' preparation for their professional science careers and, more specifically, the demanding rigors of discipline-focused professional conferences. Our goal is to provide a fair, positive, and nourishing experience to students through the abstract review, presentation mentoring and judging, and awards-selection processes. Accordingly, our abstract selection and scientific presentation evaluation processes are focused on constructive, student-professional engagement and mentoring. We feel this dialogue between students and scientists is invaluable in providing experience, insight, and professional growth for emerging scientists, mathematicians, and engineers.

Students and mentors alike respond positively to our efforts. This year, more than 1,000 abstracts were submitted for the 2015 SACNAS National Conference. Professionals recruited from our membership generously and enthusiastically volunteer their time and energy to reviewer abstracts. Reviewers provide a fair and unbiased appraisal of the abstract's quality in the overall score, and also give each student constructive feedback and suggested improvements. Each abstract is reviewed by at least two experts in this manner, similar to evaluations in traditional scientific societies. Student abstracts are evaluated according to the following criteria, and given a numerical score:

  • Clarity—the research topic and motive are easily identified
  • Communication—language and style are appropriate for a general scientific audience
  • Scientific Essentials—the purpose or goal of the study, project methods and analyses, results (or predictions), and impact/value are present and easily identified

As the size of the Student Presentations effort has grown considerably, we are limited in the number of presentations we are able accommodate at the National Conference. We are unable to accept abstracts scoring less than 60% in the review process. However, as a testament to the quality of the submissions from students, this year our acceptance rate is nearly 89%.

At the conference, all student presentations are offered with no scheduling conflict to promote attendance and interaction with our presenters. We coordinate the efforts of our volunteer judges who preside over oral presentations, visit numerous posters, and provide a mentoring experience through their critical, yet constructive, interaction with the students. The Student Presentations Committee is indebted to the hundreds of professionals who graciously and tirelessly volunteer as judges on site—without their sharing of our vision, our efforts at the conference could never be as successful as they are.

2015 SACNAS Student Presentations Committee


Gustavo Miranda-Carboni, PhD
Student Presentations Committee Chair

Gloriana Trujillo, PhD
Student Presentations Committee Member

Jose Muniz-Vargas
SACNAS Board Liaison

Gabriel Moñtano, PhD
Center for Integrated Nanotechnologies Los Alamos National Lab

Kateryna Poradiuk, MPA
SACNAS Program Associate