SJSU Student Research Competition

The SJSU Student Research Competition takes place annually in March and its winners are invited to participate in the CSU Research Competition. 

SJSU Student Research Competition 2015

and University Student Research Forum

Undergraduate and graduate research students have the opportunity to present their work and compete for selection as SJSU representatives in the annual CSU Student Research Competition at California State University, San Bernardino. Applications are made to the appropriate college and each college submits their selections to the Office of Research. Interested students can contact Jeanine Jones in the Office of Research at 408-924-3355 or to inquire about the procedures for submitting a research application packet to a specific college. Details about the competition follow. 


Each college should establish its own deadlines for receipt of the nominations from its faculty. Following are some of the college deadlines. More college deadlines will be posted when the information is shared with the Office of Research. 

College of Applied Sciences and Arts (CASA) – Application packets should be submitted to Melissa Anderson, CASA Dean’s Office, MH 431, by 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, February 25, 2015. 

College of Education – Application packets should be submitted to the Education Dean’s Office, SH 103, by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, February 20, 2015, addressed to the attention of Associate Dean Mary McVey. 

College of Engineering – Application packets should be submitted to the Engineering Dean’s Office, ENG 493, by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, February 20, 2015, addressed to the attention of Associate Dean for Research Essam Marouf. 

March 2, 2015 – Colleges send an electronic copy of the completed student delegate registration form and 5-page summary for each student to or deliver a hard copy to the Office of Research (ADM 223A).  Student teams must submit individual registration forms for each one of its members. 

March 11 and 12, 2015 – Student presentation of research and subsequent selection of SJSU finalists. 

March 16, 2015 – SJSU Office of Research submits SJSU finalist list to California State University, San Bernardino. 

May 1 and 2, 2015 – CSU Student Research Competition at California State University, San Bernardino. 


Use the student registration form (PDF) for nomination of students from each college to participate in the SJSU Student Research Competition.  Attach this registration form to a written summary of the research. The rules governing the written summary are as follows: 

  • The summary must include the names(s) of the student(s) and the title of the presentation. 
  • The narrative may not exceed five double-spaced pages.  Use fonts and margins that ensure legibility. 
  • Appendices (bibliography, graphs, photographs, or other supplementary materials) may not exceed three pages. 
  • Research that has human or animal subjects involvement must have appropriate institutional review. 

Each college may send forward a total of FOUR student projects (undergraduate and/or graduate) representing outstanding research or creative activity.  Students eligible to compete at SJSU and at the CSU-wide competition at California State University, San Bernardino are undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled or those who graduated in May 2014, August 2014, or December 2014. 

Divisions of Competition

Divisions of competition have been defined by CSU-wide procedures and the CSU-defined divisions are indicated below: 

Group A Group B
Behavioral and Social Sciences Biological and Agricultural Sciences
Business, Economics, and Public Administration  Engineering and Computer Science
Creative Arts and Design* Health, Nutrition, and Clinical Sciences
Education Physical and Mathematical Sciences
Humanities and Letters  
Interdisciplinary Majors  


*Creative projects are welcome, see SJSU Oral Presentation section below for more information.

SJSU Oral Presentation

Student research will be presented on March 11 and 12, 2015, from 1:30 to 6:00 p.m. (or as the number of eligible participants dictate) in IRC 101.  Students in Group B will make their presentations on March 11; those in Group A will present on March 12.  Each student will have 10 minutes to present her or his research and 5 minutes to listen and respond to juror and audience questions.  Students are encouraged to use delivery techniques that promote interaction with the audience.  All entrants may use audio visual materials as appropriate.  An entrant in the Creative Arts and Design category may present an audio and/or visual record of a performance s/he has given or a work s/he created; the oral presentation should focus on the rationale and historical context underlying the student’s interpretation of the material.  Successful students in previous years often have been those who practiced with their advisors or other faculty and students.  It is expected that students will not make oral presentations by simply reading directly from their research summaries. 

Research Summary and Oral Presentation Evaluation Criteria 

The University Graduate Studies & Research Committee will evaluate the research summary and the oral presentation to identify finalists for the CSU-wide competition using the same evaluation criteria that will be used in the CSU-wide competition.  The evaluation criteria are as follows: 

  • Clarity of purpose
  • Appropriateness of methodology
  • Interpretation of results
  • Value of the research or creative activity
  • Ability of presenter to articulate the research or creative activity
  • Organization of the material presented
  • Presenter’s ability to handle questions from the jury and general audience.

Within two weeks of the event, the Office of Research will provide written feedback to each student (or each group) on her/his presentation. 

Open House Celebration

The 36th SJSU Annual University Research Forum sponsored by the SJSU Research Foundation and the Office of Research will be held on April 8, 2015, in Engineering 285/287.  Refreshments will be served.  The Forum will be a celebration  for students who have been selected to represent San José State University at the 29th Annual CSU Student Research Competition.  At this event, SJSU finalists will receive a small monetary award that can be used to defray students’ basic travel expenses to the CSU statewide competition. Finalists in a multi-student research group have the one monetary award amount split equally between all group members. The Forum will also recognize the faculty mentors of selected students by the presentation of Distinguished Faculty Mentor awards.  At the Forum, finalists will be available to discuss their research at a poster session; family and friends are invited to attend. 

CSU Statewide Competition

The 29th Annual CSU Student Research Competition will be held May 1 and 2, 2015, at California State University, San Bernardino.  Evaluation criteria to be used is the same as the evaluation criteria for SJSU except the jurors will be comprised of experts from corporations, foundations, public agencies, and colleges and universities in California.  Based on the recommendations of the jurors, cash awards will be provided to the outstanding presenter and the runner-up in both the undergraduate and graduate divisions of each category.  If the undergraduate and graduate divisions of a category have been combined because there are fewer than four presenters in one division, awards will be provided to the outstanding presenter and the runner-up without regard to class standing.  In the event there are five or fewer presenters in a session, only the outstanding presenter will receive an award. 

If you have questions about the SJSU Student Research Competition or any other matters related to the Forum, please contact the Office of Research in care of Jeanine Jones at phone number 408-924-3355 or