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Genesis Award for the Outstanding Undergraduate Poster Presentation

First presented at the 2000 ABS Annual Meeting the Genesis Award honors the best undergraduate poster presentation at the meeting. To encourage quality presentations we have provided guidelines in the sections below. Further information, if needed, can be obtained from the chair of the Genesis Sub-committee, Andrew Fulmer, E-mail: [email protected].

To apply, simply mark your abstract for consideration in the Genesis Poster Competition in Step 4 in the abstract submission system. The application deadline is the last day of abstract submissions. This year the deadline is March 20, 2024.


  • Each poster presentation should be judged on its own merits.
  • Judges should identify the strengths and weaknesses to determine "the best" student poster presentation.
  • To offer encouragement and constructive criticism.
  • It is important to give student presenters encouragement and constructive criticism to students to help them develop their research and presentation skills.
  • Written comments for the student can be made on the lower half of your presentation evaluation sheet.


While judging is often a subjective process, these criteria are offered as a common starting point for judges to begin evaluating presentations. Please, evaluate each presentation using the point values for each category. Judges may add items they feel are appropriate within a category.

Significance of the research topic (5 points):

  • Is the study an original research question?
  • Does the study add to the pool of knowledge of the subject?
  • Does the rigor match the ability of the student (high school, college freshman, senior)?

Research methodology (10 points):

  • Did the study use the scientific method (observation, hypothesis, test, results, conclusion)?
  • Was a good experimental design used?
  • Did the student work independently from the supervising faculty or graduate student?
  • Did the student bring a new approach to solving the problem?

Research results (10 points)

  • Was there sufficient sampling to address the question?
  • Were statistics used appropriately?
  • Do the conclusions drawn by the student agree with the data?
  • Appropriate use of graphs and/or tables illustrating the results?

Poster presentation (15 points):

  • Does the poster contain sections necessary for a good presentation? (abstract, methods, results,conclusion, literature cited)
  • Is the study question stated clearly and completely?
  • Are materials presently in an organized and visually pleasing fashion?
  • Appropriate grammar, spelling, and English usage? (Can not exceed 5 points.)
  • Is the literature review adequate and is the literature cited complete?
  • Does the student demonstrate a mastery of the subject material?
  • Did the student improve their understanding of conducting research?
  • Does the student use good speaking skills and avoid distracting mannerisms?
  • Prospects for future studies discussed or applications of the conclusions discussed?
  • Was the presentation self-explanatory to someone with no background on the topic?

Previous Recipients

Year Name Award Affiliation Title
2023 Iman Shepard 1st prize Lake Forest College Effects of sex and larval density on immunity in bean beetles (Callosobruchus maculatus)”
2023 Anna M. Jirik 2nd prize Idaho State University Evaluating the spectrum of protandrous sex change in the hermaphroditic fish Lythrypnus dalli
2023 Fiona E. Corcoran Honorable mention University of Michigan   Field-realistic Exposure to Neonicotinoid Pesticide Impairs Visual and Olfactory Learning in Paper Wasps
2023 Abigail T. Reynolds Honorable mention University of Nebraska at Omaha Bold and shy zebrafish vary in their use of egocentric cues to navigate a T-maze
2022 Rebecca Carranza 1st prize Elon University Examining the potential for evolutionary divergence by describing treehopper host plant use and mating signals
2022 Heath R. Petkau 2nd prize University of Lethbridge Community algorithms reveal clustering in Adelaide's warbler song type sequence networks
2022 Dariana Gomez Honorable mention Lake Forest College No evidence for fitness benefits of mate preferences in female lesser waxmoths
2022 Ruel Hanlan Honorable mention University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Sexual dimorphism in fin size, shape, coloration, and its implications for animal behavior in killifish
2021 Jean L. Ross 1st prize Elon University The role of sound and vibration in mediating courtship and competition in a neotropical katydid
2021 Madison D. Griffin 2nd prize Duke University The Development of Grooming Behavior in Wild Baboons: Sex Differences in Mother-Offspring Social Relationships
2021 Haaken Bungum Honorable mention Yale-NUS College Why We Fight: Drivers of Agonism Between Smooth-Coated Otters and Malayan Water Monitors in Singapore
2021 Lesia M. Hryhorenko Honorable mention Otterbein University Analysis of In-Situ Authorship: A study on the representation of commonly marginalized authors
2021 Ana Clara Varella Honorable mention University of São Paulo How do wild infant bearded capuchin monkeys (Sapajus libidinosus) react towards lipsmacking?
2019 Lilly Hollingsworth 1st prize University of California, Riverside Male Allen's Hummingbirds Hold Mating Territories with Abundant Food Sources
2019 Jessica Riojas 2nd prize Iowa State University Mirror-Induced Behavior in Paper-Wasps: Is an Insect Capable of Self-Recognition?
2019 Aaron Rose 3rd prize Texas A&M University Calcium hydroxide may promote hybridization in a freshwater fish
2019 Alison Osbrink-McInroy Honorable mention   Effects of Traffic Noise on Zebra Finch Problem-Solving Performance
2019 Annika Ruppert Honorable mention   A Behavioral Study of Brain Lateralization in Frogs: Does a Right Ear Advantage Bias Phonotaxis?
2019 David Wilkerson-Lindsey Honorable mention University of Illinois Effects of Parental Care on Offspring Behavior in Threespined Stickleback
2019 Aaron Wikle Honorable mention St. Ambrose University A new vibrational sexual signal in a field cricket
2018 Chris Edomwande 1st Place Lake Forest College "The influence of predation risk on mate choice in the waxmoth Achroia grisella
2018 Ivonne Arriola Mendietta 1st Runner-up Florida State University "Does courtship behavior of male lance-tailed manakins affect offspring survivability?”
2018 Brandi Pessman & Rosaria Rae Honorable Mention North Central College "Juvenile social environment results in alternative mating strategies in Acheta domesticus males”
2018 Rachel Ruiz Allee Honorable Mention Colorado State University Pueblo "The impact of multiple stressors on behavioral and immunological response in vinegar flies”
2017 Colby Behrens  1st Place Iowa State University  "Do paper wasps have personalities? Physiological and genomic mechanisms of personality in Polistes fuscatus”
2017 Alexandra Dorison Honarable Mention University of Toronto Scarborough “Behavioural and developmental responses of invasive Japanese redback spiders to new temperature challenges”
2017 Cora Anne Romanow Honarable Mention Lingle Lab, University of Winnipeg “Designed to attract: ontogenetic transitions from infant distress to male courtship calls in elk”
2017 Veronica Gerios Honarable Mention University of Michigan Dearborn “Flubs that function: an analysis of sperm removal behavior in an orb weaving spider”
2017 Archchana Rajmohan Honarable Mention University of Toronto Scarborough “Heterospecific matings in widow spiders: 
Do males use different sperm allocation strategies?”
2016 Lauren Poon 1st Place University of California, Davis "Of noise and nests: Effects of anthropogenic noise on settlement patterns in Tachycineta bicolour
2016 Timothy Boycott Honaorable Mention Vassar College "Effects of deer browsing on sound propagation in northeastern temperate forests”
2015 Hailey Shannon 1st Place Susquehanna University “The Effects of Prenatal Predator Cue Exposure on Offspring Substrate Preferences in Wolf Spiders”
2015 Ciara Main Honorable Mention University of California at Davis “Seasonal Changes in Male Display Performance in Response to a Robotic Female Stimulus”
2015 Mykell Reifer Honorable Mention Carleton University “Do fight winners produce higher quality offspring?”
2015 David Vazques Honorable Mention Virginia Tech “Examining the Relationship Between Dominance Status and Disease Transmission in House Finches”