Poster Presentation Abstracts


The ASMCUE® Steering Committee invites 2017 abstract submissions on any aspect of microbiology or biology education for the poster session.  This opportunity provides an excellent venue for faculty to showcase their scholarly work in teaching microbiology or biology. In 2016, 39 abstracts were reviewed for acceptance into the conference and 23 were accepted for poster presentations.

The abstract should describe innovative teaching approaches or the specific activities conducted by the students and must indicate how those changes affected student learning.  Work described in the abstract must have been tested on students and assessment of the activity’s outcomes should be described. The ASMCUE® Abstract Review Rubric listed below describes exactly how abstracts will be reviewed.

Abstracts must be based on results that have not been published in any journal or presented or at any public, scientific, or educational conference, nationally or internationally, before July 27, 2017. Exception: ASMCUE® is an affiliated meeting of the ASM General Meeting. As such, abstracts submitted to the Division W poster session of the ASM General Meeting may also be submitted to ASMCUE®.  Authors should keep in mind that the submission and review processes for each meeting are executed independently of one another.

Abstracts accepted for ASMCUE poster presentations will be formatted and published in the Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education’s Spotlight issue, which strives to highlight science education research and ready-to-use education activities and tools to the ASM community. Published each May, the Spotlight issue includes hand-selected articles from the previous year’s JMBE volume and abstracts for the upcoming ASMCUE meeting. Attendees at ASMCUE will receive a hardcopy of JMBE’s Spotlight issue as part of their attendee packet. For more information about the journal, visit

Tips on How to Best Prepare Your Abstract
Hosted by Min-Ken Liao, Furman College and 2010-2012 ASMCUE® Abstract Review Chair


Watch this webinar to learn more about preparing an abstract for ASMCUE®.  The previously recorded webinar is 45 minutes long with 10 minutes of Q&A from the participants.

In this webinar you will learn:

-The abstract submission and review process

-Reasons for immediate rejection

-Reasons why you might be asked to modify your abstract and the resubmission process

-How to write an acceptable abstract (exemplar provided)

-Guidelines for submitting and an explanation of the rubric used by reviewers

-The three most important things to remember when writing an abstract!


Abstract Format

The abstract should describe innovative teaching approaches or the specific activities conducted by the students and must indicate how those changes affected student learning.  Work described in the abstract must have been tested on students and assessment of the activity’s outcomes should be described.

Abstracts are limited to 1850 characters (excluding spaces). Completed abstracts should be submitted by midnight PST on April 3, 2017 at the Abstract Submission Site (SITE CLOSED).

Examples of previously accepted abstracts may be found in last year's Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education.

General Guidelines

Authors should take into account the recommended criteria below while also taking time to view the ASMCUE® Abstract Review Rubric listed below prior to submitting.  Abstract rejection criteria are similar to any scientific meeting (No Hypothesis; Inadequate Experimental Methods; Insufficient Data Presented; No Conclusion).

Description of Activities/Approaches Introduced – Are the goals and particular educational situation presented in sufficient detail to understand the author’s choice of research/investigation?  Is there specific information described for the student projects/activities, or the teaching strategies, such that other conference participants can determine whether these activities might be useful to adopt?

Learning Impact – How does this activity contribute to or enhance student learning?  Does the potential of the research study add to and deepen our understanding of issues associated with teaching and learning?  Research that leads the field in new directions often is more worthwhile than replications of existing research studies.

Assessment– What was the outcome?  How was the effectiveness of this project determined?  How was student learning assessed?  Did the students learn what they were expected to learn?  How did the activity facilitate their learning better than other/previous methods used.

Abstract Selection

Abstract reviewers will use the rubric below to assess abstracts.  Abstracts will be accepted, rejected or accepted with modifications.  If an abstract is accepted with modifications, authors will receive specific comments from the reviewers asking the author to make changes to improve the clarity or organization of the abstract.

Two main criteria will be considered by the review committee when reviewing abstracts for acceptance. They are: 

  1. Demonstration of a scientific problem (must contain hypothesis and/or statement of problem, methods used, results and conclusion)
  2. Quality of written content


Eligibility Requirement

The research study addresses an appropriate question regarding student learning in the microbiological or biological sciences.


The author provides a context and rationale for introducing this activity or approach.


The author defines how the activity or approach is expected to impact student learning.

Assessment Methods

The author clearly and briefly describes the methodologies employed to gather and analyze data related to student learning.


The author discusses data gathered and interprets results to be presented at the poster.


The author summarizes the outcome of the research study.


The research described has the potential to lead the field in new directions or adds to and deepens understanding of issues associated with teaching and learning.


The abstract is lucid, clear and well-organized.



















Poster Presentation Guidelines

Please use the following specifications and tips to prepare your poster presentation.


  • The poster-board size is 3 feet high and 4 feet wide.
  • Prepare a headline strip that runs the full width of the poster.  Include the title, authors, and affiliations on the strip in letters not less than 1” high.
  • Post copy of your abstract, typed in large print, in the upper left-hand corner. 
  • Place your name, address, phone and fax numbers and email address in the upper right-hand corner.
  • ASM suggests that you organize your presentation with the following headings “Introduction,” “Methods,” “Results,” and “Conclusions” to identify your layout.
  • Hand-carry your poster to the conference.  Shipments will not be accepted.

Be sure to bring your own pushpins.

Tips for Effective Poster Presentations:

Layout – Plan your poster early.  Create an initial sketch of your layout first. Focus your attention on a few key points.  What needs to be expressed in words?  Posters should stimulate discussion.  Keep text to a minimum, but make certain the poster is understandable without oral explanation.  Text should be readable from a distance of five feet.

Balance – Avoid abbreviations, acronyms, and jargon.  Use a consistent font throughout.  Place related materials and photographs together.  The movement of the eye over the poster should be natural, down columns or along rows.  Is there spatial balance?  Size attracts attention.  Is the pathway through the poster clear? Arrows, pointing hands, numbers, and letters can help clarify the sequence.

Simplicity – When choosing a background color, remember that neutral or gray colors will be easier on the eyes than a bright color.  Resist the temptation to overload the poster.  More material may mean less communication.

Presenting – Prepare a five minute chat during which you explain the key concepts and give examples of facts/statistics to reinforce the concepts.  You may utilize handouts to supplement your poster.

Poster Perfect | The Scientist
How to drive home your science with a visually pleasing poster. Source: