woman pointing and explaining poster to audience

How to participate in OSPA

Participating as a student

IF you indicated your interest in OSPA during abstract submission, you need to confirm your participation by 30 October on the OSPA website (to be launched). In mid-October, more information will be emailed to students who opted into OSPA during abstract submission.

AGU student members pursuing an undergraduate, masters, or doctorate degree are eligible to participate. You must be the lead author of the abstract presented. Postdoctoral researchers are not eligible.

During the abstract submission process, students must indicate their interest in participating in order to be considered. Students cannot be added after the abstract submission deadline passes. You must confirm your participation by 30 October 2019 in the online system.

AGU recognizes that scores and judges’ comments are important for students to better their presentation skills for future sessions. Sign back into the online system in January 2020 to view your scores and to find out if you have won an OSPA.

  • Judges’ scores heavily favor presentation skills. The scientific content is very important but not the focus.
  • Whether an oral or a poster session, the presentation must be orally presented and explained by the student. The poster itself is not judged without student commentary, just as an oral session’s slides are not judged independently.

  • The judging evaluation window cannot be changed after the participation confirmation deadline.
  • You may not leave your poster at any time during this two-hour period and we recommend students stay for the entire session.
  • Presentations will be evaluated by up to three judges. If you are not present, the judges will simply skip your presentation.
  • Be respectful of the judge’s time. If there is a group gathering at your poster, address everyone as someone in the group may be one of your judges.

This award is focused on recognizing presentation skills. Judges will assess you in the following areas on a scale of 1–5.

  • Presentation: Visuals, effective use of allotted time or space, diction (enunciation, volume, and clarity), general style, liveliness, and stage presence.
  • Content: Organization and logic, appropriate comprehension/knowledge of field, clear explanation/ability to answer questions, and significance and originality.
  • Overall Impression: Compared to other students’ presentations
  • Comments: Comments from judges are also encouraged in order to distinguish papers with similar scores.

OSPA judge information

Volunteer judges are an integral part of the Outstanding Student Presentation Awards. Many AGU students will remember their first OSPA experience fondly thanks to the help and generosity of the judges. To participate, judges may sign up and schedule themselves online after 1 November. Judges must first agree to the Honor Code and register with their institution email address. Judges are not allowed to evaluate students from their institution or students they are acquainted with.

Judging process

Whether judging an oral or a poster session, the presentation must be orally presented and explained by the student.

  • Do not judge a poster or slide presentation without student commentary. If the student is not present during their assigned two-hour period, you may not judge their poster separately.
  • Please designate on the evaluation form why you were not able to judge a presentation. If you arrived at the presentation outside of the evaluation period, please note on the evaluation form you were not able to attend.
  • Students are informed that they must remain by their poster for a minimum of two hours. The time period will be indicated and available for judges to see on the OSPA website.
  • Presentations will be judged by up to three judges in an effort to ensure impartiality.
  • Judges are encouraged to remain anonymous. We hope that the students present their posters with the same energy and enthusiasm to everyone who walks by.

If you are at the meeting and cannot judge one of your presentations, you are responsible for finding a substitute. Ask a colleague or friend.

woman explaining to woman her poster

Judging criteria

This award is focused on recognizing presentation skills. Judges will assess the students in the following areas and rate them on a scale of 1–5. A more detailed rubric will be available soon in the OSPA navigation menu of the OSPA website.

  • Presentation: Visuals, effective use of allotted time or space, diction (enunciation, volume, and clarity), general style, liveliness, and stage presence.
  • Content: Organization and logic, appropriate comprehension/knowledge of field, clear explanation/ability to answer questions, and significance and originality.
  • Overall Impression: Compared to other student’s presentations.
  • Comments: Comments from judges are also encouraged in order to distinguish papers with similar scores.

Woman explains poster to another woman attendee

Judge evaluation forms

All scores must still be entered online by the deadline on Friday, 20 December 2019.

  • You will submit all scores online. You can use the provided computers in the OSPA Resource Center, or you can use your own tablet, laptop, or smartphone.
  • Paper score sheets can be used to take notes and will be available at the OSPA Resource Center in the Poster Hall. Judges may print paper score sheets ahead of the meeting if they wish. All scores must still be entered electronically.
  • All judges must enter their scores into the OSPA system by Friday, 20 December 2019
  • Judges may edit scores until Friday, 20 December 2019.
Colorful laptop open

OSPA Liaison Information

Liaisons are designated by the primary session convener and will be contacted by the OSPA coordinator for their section in October. Liaisons are responsible for helping fill 3 judging slots for each confirmed OPSA student in their session and should leverage their professional network in order to recruit judges. Liaisons may choose to judge students in their session themselves if they do not have a conflict of interest.

Liaisons can see the students in their session, track their judge recruitment progress, and ensure that they’ve fulfilled their responsibilities on the OSPA website, which will open on 1 November.

  • Eligibility: Only non-student AGU members are eligible to serve as liaisons. It is not required to attend Fall Meeting, but attendance will be helpful.
  • Responsibilities: Recruit three judges for every OSPA presentation in your Fall Meeting session(s) by leveraging your professional network, November – December 2019.

    We assist in recruiting as well, but your professional connections are integral in recruiting volunteers.

section of Poster Hall

OSPA Coordinator Information

Section leaders designate at least two OSPA coordinators each year to encourage volunteers to participate as OSPA judges during Fall Meeting. In order to be eligible for this role, volunteers must be AGU non-student members, but they do not have to attend Fall Meeting. The coordinator role requires a minimal time commitment (about 0.5 to one hour per week through mid-January).

Responsibilities:

  • Manage the effort to secure judges for students within section
  • Encourage judges to sign up via direct email, section newsletters, websites, or other communications
  • Assist OSPA liaisons in recruiting judges
  • Encourage judges to enter their scores by the deadline
  • Participate in the selection of OSPA winners within section
  • Commit about 0.5 to one hour per week, starting in November 2019 through 10 January 2020

Eligibility: Only non-student AGU members are eligible to serve as coordinators. It is not required to attend Fall Meeting, but attendance will be helpful.

If you are interested in participating as an OSPA coordinator, contact your Section leadership.

Coordinator designations will be finalized by August.