38th Annual California State University Student Research Competition

Cal Poly is excited to host the CSU-wide Student Research Competition on April 26 & 27, 2024 in San Luis Obispo!

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2024 CSU SRC Awardees are announced here. More communication to follow!


The 2024 CSU Student Research Competition Program is now available.

Presentation Schedule & Location Information

The 2024 competition presentation schedule is now available. Location (building & room) information is now posted; please continue to check this "live schedule" for any updates. Access the Cal Poly Campus Map. Please note: on F 4/26, each presentation has a start time that is now 10 minutes later than originally posted to accommodate location set-up and room transitions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Please access our FAQ document here: https://tinyurl.com/2024-CSU-SRC-FAQ. This document will be updated regularly. It includes information on presentation logistics, slide design, how to access your slides during the competition, what to wear (if you would you like some advice - no pressure!) and more. 

Please email CSUresearchcomp2024@calpoly.edu with any additional questions.

General Event Schedule for the CSU-Wide Student Research Competition

Cal Poly Campus Map

Date time What's happening? Location
Thursday 4/25/24 6-9pm Downtown SLO Farmers' Market Higuera Street
  6:30pm Info Session: An Introduction to the Health Professions Track of the California Pre-Doctoral Program  43A-150 
Friday 4/26/24 9-9:30am Field trip #1 to Cal Poly Hot House in downtown San Luis Obispo (sign-up is closed) 872 Higuera St. SLO
  9:30-10am Field trip #2 to Cal Poly Hot House in downtown San Luis Obispo (sign-up is closed) 872 Higuera St. SLO
  10am-3pm Registration/Check-in 197-107 
(Bonderson Engineering Projects Center "High Bay")
  10am-12pm Continental Breakfast 7-01 (ATL Lobby)
  11:15am Opening Remarks 7-02 (ATL Auditorium)
  12-4pm Student Presentations Various (see schedule)
  2-2:30pm  Info Session: Developing Future Faculty Programs within the California State University Office of the Chancellor (CDIP, California Predoctoral Scholars) 13-110 
  2:30-3pm  Info Session: An Introduction to the Health Professions Track of the California Pre-Doctoral Program  13-110 
  3:30-5pm Networking & Community-Building Event at Mustang Lanes = bowling with ice cream, including vegan ice cream! Open to everyone participating in or supporting someone to participate in the CSU SRC! Join for some or all of the time. 65-118 (University Union, UU)
Saturday 4/27/24 7:30-9:30am Registration/Check-in 197-107 
(Bonderson Engineering Projects Center "High Bay")
  7:30-9:30am Continental Breakfast 7-01 (ATL Lobby)
  8am-12pm Student Presentations Various (see schedule)
  9-9:30am Info Session: An Introduction to the Health Professions Track of the California Pre-Doctoral Program 192-106 
  10-10:30am  Info Session: Developing Future Faculty Programs within the California State University Office of the Chancellor (CDIP, California Predoctoral Scholars) 192-106 
  12-1:15pm Lunch Engineering Plaza (near Bldgs 7, 192 & 197)
  1:30-2:30pm Awards 3-213 (Business Silo)
More to do while you are here!  
4/25-4/30/24   Watch a film or catch a talk at the SLO International Film Festival Box Office
4/26-4/27/24 7pm Kapwa: Pilipino Cultural Night 35 (at the Clark Center for the Performing Arts in Arroyo Grande; tickets will sell out) Get tickets now!
4/26-4/28/24   Check out the Design Village Competition hosted at Cal Poly How to get to the Cal Poly Design Village 
During your visit   Explore the self-guided Indigenous Walking Tour that highlights the Indigenous history of the yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini (ytt) Northern Chumash tribe on the land that the Cal Poly campus resides on. Read the overview, Cal Poly news story and coverage by Mustang News.  

Travel Info for Student/Alum Presenters, Accompanying Staff & Supporters

All individual delegates, accompanying staff and supporters who will attend the competition should complete the RSVP Form by Friday, April 5, 2024. If you have not yet completed the form, please do so ASAP.

Public Transportation is available! 


  • Friday, April 26, 2024

    • Parking is provided to attendees at no-cost only in lots H12, H14 and H16 via the PM Reserve website. Please see instructions below for reserving parking prior to arriving:
      • Visit https://calpoly.pmreserve.com/ (this is available now and up until/on Friday 4/26)
      • Select "Cal Poly Events" and "Next"
      • Search "Student Research Competition" in search field and select "Search"
      • Click on "CSU Student Research Competition 2024"
      • Enter "SRC2024" in the Access Code and select "Update"
      • Enter the quantity of reservations (only 1 per car needed but can reserve for multiple cars at once)
      • Select "Continue Checkout" under "Guest Checkout"
      • Enter all required information and select "Complete Purchase"; this is free of charge to the attendees; drivers do not need to place anything on the vehicle- the reservation is tied to the license plate 
    • Locations of lots H12, H14 and H16 are circled in yellow on this map
  • Saturday, April 27, 2024

    • Parking permits are not required on Saturdays and Sundays with the exception of event lots, spaces labeled "Staff 24/7" & Residential parking areas. Applicable event rates apply in event lots. "24/7 Meter" parking is enforced when indicated on the meter. Limited time zones (example G2 Lot; Green Curbs labeled 20 Min. Max.) and all spaces in Residential parking areas are always enforced.

Local Transportation Hubs

Hotels in Walking Distance

  • For hotels that are walking distance to campus, please look for hotels that are on Monterey Street, on Santa Rosa Ave, or in downtown San Luis Obispo. You can also utilize Cal Poly's zip code (93407) and search for hotels within 2 miles of that zip code, like this on Yelp.

Other Suggested Hotels

  • Hampton Inn & Suites (1530 Calle Joaquin, San Luis Obispo)
  • Quality Suites (1631 Monterey Street, San Luis Obispo)
  • Towneplace Suites (1301 Calle Joaquin, San Luis Obispo)
  • Note: All hotel blocks are now full. 

About the CSU Student Research Competition

The California State University Student Research Competition is an annual event that brings together scholars from the 23 campuses of our California State University system. The competition showcases undergraduate and graduate research, scholarship, and creative works by recognizing outstanding student accomplishments. across the 23 campuses.

Current undergraduate students, graduate students, and recent alumni from all academic disciplines can participate. Each year, over 200 students from the 23 CSU campuses submit written papers and make oral presentations before juries of professional experts from major corporations, foundations, public agencies, and universities in California. Students who compete in the CSU Student Research Competition can win $500 for first place and $250 for second place recognition in their session.

Each CSU campus appoints a campus coordinator and develops its own procedures for selecting student delegates to the system-wide competition. Interested students should contact their campus coordinator for more information. Only those students endorsed by the campus coordinator can enter the system-wide competition.

Important Dates for the CSU-Wide Student Research Competition

  • Wednesday, March 13, 2024: Campus coordinators will submit a list of students who have been selected by their campus for the system wide competition to CSUresearchcomp2024@calpoly.edu.  
  • Friday, March 15, 2024: One delegate (student/alum) from each research project participating in the competition must register via the CSU Student Research Competition 2024 Delegate Registration Form via InfoReady (as hosted by Cal Poly). The registering delegate will have the opportunity to list co-presenters/co-authors.

    Please create a new account as needed to utilize this form. If you are having any difficulties with the form, please try alternate browsers, including Google Chrome.

    A written summary of the research/creative activity must be provided as part of competitor/delegate registration and will be available to competition jurors.
    • The summary must include the name(s) of the student(s) and the title of the presentation.
    • The written narrative should
      1. Utilize a font size of 10 or above
      2. Have margins of at least 0.75”
      3. Should be a minimum of one page and not exceed two pages in total (1-2 pages)
      4. Appendices (for example; bibliography if not already provided in narrative; graphs not provided in narrative; photographs not provided in narrative; or other supplementary materials) are optional, may not exceed three pages total, and will be uploaded separately from the written narrative.
  • ASAP / Friday, April 5 2024 (extended deadline): All participants (including all delegates, campus coordinators, jurors, event volunteers, and other supporters) must complete this RSVP Form. It includes opportunities for you to let us know the events you plan to attend and provide information on any dietary requirements.

What research or creative activity is eligible? 

Undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled at any CSU campus and alumni/alumnae who received their degrees in winter, spring, summer or fall 2023 or winter 2024 are eligible.

Note: You are welcome to submit projects completed with a faculty or staff member. You may also submit projects with multiple student authors. 

Please note: An individual student is limited to the submission of two projects to the 2024 competition - one as primary author and one as a secondary author or two as secondary author.

Presentations from all disciplines are welcome. The ten disciplinary categories are as follows:

  • Behavioral, Social Sciences & Public Administration
  • Engineering and Computer Science
  • Biological and Agricultural Sciences
  • Health, Nutrition, and Clinical Sciences
  • Business, Economics, and Hospitality Management
  • Humanities and Letters
  • Interdisciplinary
  • Education
  • Physical and Mathematical Sciences

There will be separate undergraduate and graduate divisions for each category (unless a division has four or fewer entrants, in which case the divisions may be combined).

The research/creative activity presented should be appropriate to the student’s discipline and career goals. Proprietary research is excluded. All research must comply with all applicable policies and regulations. Research that involves human or animal subjects must have appropriate institutional review.

Competition Guidelines

Students will present their work orally before a jury and an audience. Students will compete by discipline category and, typically, by division (undergraduate/graduate). 

Student presenters will have 10 minutes for an oral presentation of their work and five minutes to listen and respond to juror and audience questions. It is expected that a student will not make a presentation by simply reading directly from the written summary. In cases in which entries are multi-author, we recommend that oral presentations be made by no more than two students, with any additional group members, as relevant, responding to juror and audience questions. 

All entrants may use audiovisual materials as appropriate, and presenters are encouraged to use delivery techniques that promote interaction with the audience. 

Entrants in the Creative Arts and Design category may present an audio and/or visual recording of a performance they have given or a work they have created; their oral presentation should focus on the rationale and historical context underlying their interpretation of the material.
Each entry (oral presentation plus written summary) will be judged on the following:

  1. Clarity of purpose
  2. Appropriateness of methodology
  3. Interpretation of results
  4. Value of the research or creative activity
  5. Ability of the presenter to articulate the research or creative activity
  6. Organization of the material presented
  7. Presenter’s ability to address questions from the jury and general audience


Student questions should be directed to the local campus coordinator. Coordinators may contact CSUresearchcomp2024@calpoly.edu with any questions.


The 2024 CSU Research Competition is organized by the Cal Poly Office of Student Research in partnership with the Office of the Vice President of Research and the Division of Research. Additional support is provided by the Office of the Provost. The campus contact is Dr. Jane Lehr, Director of the Office of Student Research.

Cal Poly is a nationally ranked public university located in San Luis Obispo, California, known for its Learn by Doing philosophy. Each year about 22,000 top-tier students come to Cal Poly to put knowledge into action, taking their learning outside the classroom as they prepare for careers in areas such as engineering, agriculture, science, business, humanities and the built environment. Cal Poly’s hands-on approach, small class sizes and close student-faculty mentorships result in graduates Ready Day One to impact their communities, California and the world. Visit: www.calpoly.edu




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