Q: What’s a symposium?
A: A symposium is simply a conference or meeting where people gather to discuss a particular subject. The faculty committee will organize the presentations into panels that share a similar theme or approach.
Q: How long can my presentation be?
A: Your presentation should be 15-20 minutes long. Your panel moderator will be in contact with you about whether your presentation should be 15 or 20 minutes long.
Q: I’m not sure if I can say everything I need to in 15 minutes.
A: Don’t worry, no one expects you to say everything about a topic in 15 minutes. Moreover, there will a question and answer period during which you can add in things that you didn’t have time to cover.
Q: Can I use a PowerPoint presentation, show images, or movie clips during my presentation?
Q: Do I have to read my paper as part of my presentation?
A: While presentation styles differ across disciplines and even depending on the personality of the presenter, one common and widely accepted practice among scholars in the humanities is for presenters to read their papers.
Q: Am I eligible for an award if I don’t present?
A: No. To be eligible for an award, you must orally present your paper.
Q: Am I eligible for an award if I don’t submit my paper?
A: No. To be eligible for an award you must submit a paper version of your presentation.
Q: Who should submit an abstract and participate in the Humanities Symposium?
A: Any undergraduate student who has taken a humanities class–Art History, Literature, a modern foreign language, History, etc.
–Any student who might be interested in going to graduate school.
–Any student who might be interested in going to professional school.
Q: Do I need to have my paper written by the time I submit my abstract?
A: No. Many times, scholars will submit an abstract for a paper they have yet to write. Think of an abstract as an outline or as a proposal. Your paper doesn’t have to 100% match your abstract; as long as it is on the same general topic you’ll be fine.
Q: Does it cost anything to participate in the Humanities Symposium?
A: No and in fact you could win money via one of the awards.
Q: Can I submit my paper as part of a pre-formed panel consisting of three or four other papers?
A: Yes. Many times, scholars collaborate and submit an abstract for a pre-formed panel of three or four papers.