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Attending the International Conference of Undergraduate Research (ICUR)

By Eleftherios Ioannou

The International Conference of Undergraduate Research (ICUR) is an academic conference where students are encouraged to showcase their research in real-time video-linked sessions. Undoubtedly, participating in sessions along with students coming from different disciplines has been a valuable experience for me.

In the summer of 2019, I had the chance to get involved in a research project during the Sheffield Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) scheme. The research project was about developing a mobile application for viewing Arbor Low, a Neolithic henge monument in Augmented Reality. With the help of my supervisor Dr Steve Maddock, I explored and made use of various Computer Graphics techniques, gained valuable skills and a valuable experience of the academic research environment. I was also supervised by Dr Graham McElearney (Digital Learning) and Dr Bob Johnston (Department of Archaeology).

Towards the end of the SURE scheme, I was informed from the SURE team about the opportunity to present my research in the ICUR, to an international audience. I then applied for a poster presentation by submitting my project’s abstract. Thankfully, my application was approved and I was able to attend the ICUR conference at the University of Leeds.

I attended the first day of the conference and there, not only I was able to present my research but I also attended various oral presentation sessions on many interesting topics. Those sessions were real-time video-linked, so I had the chance to be present in presentations of students from different universities in the UK and abroad. Moreover, at the end of each presentation, people from both the University of Leeds and the video-linked University could ask questions and a fascinating dialogue was being developed using some innovative technology.

As I had expressed my interest in plenty of different projects, so other students were interested in my research project. This gave me the chance to talk about the background and the methodologies I developed to come up with the results my poster was demonstrating.

This kind of opportunity, is definitely not-to-be-missed since they help you develop your own interests, exchange ideas and enhance your communication and presentation skills.