AGU Virtual Poster Showcase

Spring Showcase opens 4 February. Details coming soon

The Virtual Poster Showcase (VPS) is a guided peer review process and online presentation competition for Earth and space science.

VPS is a great way for students (with any level of experience) to hone the skills most important to succeeding in science …while still in school:

  • Practice presenting research data, communicating its relevancy and value
  • Dedicate the time to focus on enhancing (if not creating) your abstract and poster
  • Experience the peer review process in a low-pressure environment
  • Connect with other like-minded students and experts from around the globe

Showcases take place each spring and fall and are broken into two competitions: Undergraduate and Graduate level.


Complete the 2018 fall showcase and you can expect to:

  • Obtain invaluable feedback on your research and presentation from your peers and experts
  • Expand your network engaging in the process
  • Receive a certificate of participation
  • Gain citations for your abstract (and CV) — automatically included in AGU’s archive and AGI’s GeoRef – the most comprehensive bibliographic database in the geosciences with over 4 Million references
  • First prize winners of the graduate and undergraduate showcases will receive funding toward lodging and airfare, plus a complimentary registration for AGU’s 2019 Fall Meeting


After you register, you will start receiving emails that will help with immediate next steps. You will also gain access to your VPS dashboard. This where you will need to:

  1. Fill out your VPS profile.
  2. Upload your abstract.
  3. Pay $35 USD administration fee.


With your abstract submitted, now it will go through an approval process. Shortly thereafter, if/when accepted you will receive a confirmation email, at which point you are ready for the showcase to begin.

After 3 October 2018, and over the next eight-weeks, right from the comfort of your couch (or favorite coffee shop) you will:

  • Create video presentation about your research using your phone or camera; upload it and your poster to the dashboard. (3 weeks to complete; 4 October to 23 October)

  • Review posters by engaging with peer participants through the VPS dashboard, as well as provide a vote for top posters. (3 weeks to complete; 26 October to 13 November)

  • Respond to reviews of and questions by scientific professionals assigned to your poster. (16 November to 7 December)

  • Once the experts’ scores have been received, the best-ranked posters for Undergrad and Graduate level research will be announced on 12 December 2018.

With nothing to lose and everything to gain, we hope you join us!


Please do not hesitate to reach us at

The Four Stages of VPS

  1. Abstract
  2. Upload
  3. Judging
  4. Recognition

The first step in each showcase is for students to register, fill out a profile, pay, and submit an abstract.


  • The first author (and presenter) on the abstract must be an undergraduate student for the Undergraduate Showcase and a graduate student for the Graduate Showcase.

  • Abstracts must be in English and submitted by the abstract submission deadline. Abstract submission deadline for the Fall 2018 Showcase is 2 October 2018 at 11:59 PM ET.

  • The title is limited to 300 characters and the body is limited to 2000 characters (spaces and punctuation included).

  • There is a $35 (US dollars) administration fee for all abstracts. Once abstracts are successfully uploaded and payment made, students will receive a confirmation email their abstracts have been accepted.

You’ve got your profile set up, and your abstract has officially been accepted! Now, it’s time to create and upload your poster and video presentation explaining the science.

Here’s a quick overview of what you need to know:

  • You can create your poster using a Mac or a PC using PowerPoint, Adobe Illustrator, Canvas, or any other program.

  • The poster must be one page and in English.

  • Poster dimensions are as follows: The maximum width is 48 inches (130 cm); the maximum height is 36 inches (100 cm). The file size may not exceed 25MB.

  • You must save your file as a PDF. (The virtual poster software does not recognize any other file formats.)

Mark your calendars now — the deadline to upload your poster and video will be 23 October at 11:59 PM ET.

The review, or judging, phase is divided into two efforts: Peer Judging and Expert Judging.

1. Peer Judging: 26 October to 13 November, 2018

The first phase of reviewing is the peer review. The goal is to give students the chance to practice critical thinking, review and rating of data and visual appeal.

This is a fun phase of the showcase because students will be engaging with each other sharing their best thinking. Because of this participation depends on participants being responsive to questions and providing input.

In fact, each lead author is required to judge three (3) other posters, plus provide a score based on the visual appeal and scientific content of the poster.

As a result, students:

  • Must be available to log-in to their virtual poster dashboard and respond to questions.
  • Are expected to contribute input (which means engage with authors they are reviewing by asking questions about their posters and research).
  • Will not be assigned to judge other students from the same institution or research project.

2. Expert Judging: 16 November to 7 December, 2018

The second review effort involves the experts (scientists and faculty), who will be reviewing posters based on scientific merit and on visual appeal.

It’s worth noting, as part of the expert review process:

  • Judges will be allowed to submit comments and questions to poster authors.
  • Students with posters being judged will need to be available to log-in to their dashboard and respond in a timely manner.
  • All judge comments and questions PLUS author responses will be posted on author dashboard …a conversation only authors can see
  • Judge comments and questions (only) will, however, be posted online and visible to other presenters and judges. This helps create transparency, as well as provides continued cohort learning.

Once the judges have completed, the entire VPS site (including dashboard access) will close, and winners will be selected and announced shortly thereafter.


You can find a rubric explaining how posters will be judged/each of the categories by clicking here.

Each student will receive a certificate of participation after completing all steps of the Virtual Poster Showcase, including judging 3 peers’ posters and responding to feedback from expert judges, if appropriate. The grand prize winner of the entire showcase will receive funding towards lodging and airfare (some restrictions apply) and free registration for the 2018 Fall Meeting.

A few weeks after the conclusion of your showcase you will receive information about how to cite your abstract. Your abstract will become available in the VPS database shortly thereafter.

Early Bird Registration

Students: Register by 20 August for a chance to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card. We will be drawing one Graduate and Undergraduate winner.

Previous Winners