STEM Research Series

STEM logo that features a new color for each letter and icon for each topic

Participate in the annual STEM Roadrunner Research Series!

Research a topic of your choice related to Science, Technology, Engineering or Math and present it. Participating in this college-wide research series will help you:

  • Grow Professionally
  • Hone Presentation Skills
  • Add to Your Resume
  • Boost Your University Apps
  • Learn About New Things
  • Connect With People
MCC Student Darren Kendall works with mentor faculty member Dianne Purves on his STEM research project.

MCC Student Darren Kendall works with mentor faculty member Dianne Purves on his STEM research project.

Important Deadlines

Pick your topic and register by:
April 1, 2024

Submit your PowerPoint slides OR poster for printing by:
May 1, 2024

Presentations & Poster Sessions:

Research Series Preparation

STEP 1: Choose a Topic

Your topic may be directly related to an assignment or project assigned by your instructor for a Science, Math, or Technology course. This project and your assignment may be done in tandem, but make sure you are working with your instructor to abide by the parameters of their assignment in addition to the requirements of this presentation.

You may also choose a topic to develop further based on something of interest in your study this year. This may be something you learned that you can continue to research independently or something related that you have an interest in outside of the classroom.

The topics below are only suggestions to get your mind thinking about the possibilities. You may choose any topic related to science, technology, engineering or math. 


  • The impact of global warning on marine life
  • Extensive research of photosynthesis aspects and functions
  • Thyroid hormones and their impact on the female body
  • DNA structure, modifications, and genetic disorders
  • Is it ethical to test cosmetics on animals?
  • The ability of living organisms to adapt to changing environments
  • The need for the protection of rare and endangered species
  • The role of sustainability in biology
  • Advantages and disadvantages of organic farming
  • The role of neurobiology in artificial intelligence and development
  • The discovery and impact of Darwin’s Theory
  • The discovery, history, and importance of vaccination
  • The role of microbes and microbiology in health
  • Neurobiology and its association with emotional trauma
  • Biology: mechanical signals regulating development
  • Cultural variations in environment and biology: AIDS
  • A review of the ecology and biology of the whale shark
  • Performance and quality assessment of methods for detection of point mutations
  • Optical imaging techniques in cell biology
  • Computational methods in molecular biology


  • Risks of climate change and global warming
  • Aspects and perspectives of Kyoto Protocol
  • Green hydrogen in automotive industry, is it a great alternative?
  • The origin of the carbon tax
  • Amazonian deforestation, its causes, and trends
  • The greenhouse effect: process, components, and risks
  • Types of pollution: air, water, and soil
  • Alternative energy in Europe
  • Water scarcity in the Middle East
  • Wind energy as an alternative source
  • Benefits of sustainable technology and living
  • Vulnerability of hazardville to flooding disasters
  • Environment protection authority and chemical waste
  • Population control in China
  • Geoengineering principles
  • Acid rains: the cause and current measures
  • Radioactive waste disposal
  • The protection of wildlife
  • E-mobility as an environmental protection measure
  • Ecological conservation


  • Contribution of women to mathematics
  • The number Pi
  • Mental health statistics
  • The misuse of statistics
  • Law of Cosines
  • History of mathematics
  • Euler’s Identity
  • History of the Quadratic
  • Logic and reasoning
  • Polya’s Method for problem solving
  • Cryptography: Mathematics in the real world
  • The origins of algebra
  • Math in Radiology
  • Standard deviation
  • The golden ratio
  • Mathematics in art
  • Mathematics in music
  • The mind of Gauss
  • Gauss’s Method
  • Euclid: Father of Geometry
STEP 2: Choose a Mentor

Ask your instructor or another STEM faculty member if they are available to assist you with your project, or possibly if they can refer you to someone who may assist you. Your mentor should be someone who can help you narrow down your topic and assist with questions and issues through your research process.

MCC Biology Faculty member Dianne Purves helps a student in a seed and flower lab

STEP 3: Register to Present

Fill out the Registration Form to secure your spot at this year’s Roadrunner Research Series. You’ll need your topic, type of presentation (see below) and mentor’s name when you sign up.

Presentation Types:

You have two options when you are presenting your research project.

PowerPoint/Slides Presentation: You will give a 20-minute presentation on your topic to a live audience. The main format of your presentation should be a PowerPoint (or similar slideshow software) presentation. The session includes a 15-minute presentation, and a 5-minute Q&A session.

Poster Presentation: You will have a table set up in a room with your printed poster (which will be printed at MCC and paid for by the STEM Title III grant). For 30 minutes you will need to stay at your table and give a short summary of your project and answer questions for anyone who stops by your table. Other research participants will be in the room with you at the time. Costs include the purchase of a foam core board (about $1 at Walmart) and double-sided tape or adhesive to mount the poster to the board. A template for your poster can be found in Step 6 of these instructions.

STEP 4: Research your Topic

Delve into your topic! Find a variety of quality sources to develop your understanding of the topic, ask questions, and seek answers.

STEP 5: Craft a summary of your presentation

Create a short summary that you can use on the day of the presentation to help summarize your topic, and that we can use in promoting your presentation during the event.

  • 250 words or less, telling others about your topic and presentation
  • What is already known about your topic? Signal the objective of your research – How are you adding to the conversation?
  • What methods did you use in your research? How did you study the topic?
  • Summarize what you found out in your research; new or interesting additions to the topic that you will discuss in your presentation/poster.
  • Significance – Why is this important? What are the implications?
STEP 6: Prepare your presentation/poster

All research studies should have key elements, either in a powerpoint/slides presentation or in a poster presentation (template available to guide you):

  • Introduction – Topic. What is it? Why are you interested in it?
  • Key Concepts – Definitions and explanations of key ideas, quotes from scholars and key individuals from the field of study
  • Process, Examples, or Data – Connections to other topics, life, career, family
  • Conclusions – What did you learn, what does it mean to you personally or professionally? What does it teach others? How does it apply to other situations?
  • Graphics – have about 3 pictures, graphs, charts (and media for PowerPoint presenters) that relate to your topic. Provide an explanation
  • References – List the sources of information you used
  • Contact Information – Your name and college email address


PowerPoint: It is highly recommended that if you choose to do a PowerPoint presentation that you ensure it has some rich media (good images, videos, audio) as needed.

Canva Template: Visit, sign up for a free account, and then use this 30″ x 20″ STEM Research Series template to create your poster. You can move the elements around or create your own layout – this is just a guideline if you want it and to show the type of content that would help present a whole picture of your project.

Canva Tutorial Videos:

STEP 7: Review & Revise

Ask your mentor to review your presentation/poster to make suggested edits. Have your family/friends who DON’T know the subject review it and tell you if it is clear and if they understand it, if they don’t get feedback on how it might be better.

STEP 8: Submit the summary and presentation/poster by May 1

PowerPoint Slides Presentation: If you created a PowerPoint presentation, you need to submit it no later than May 1. If you created the presentation using online software, please bring the presentation on a drive on the day of the presentations just in case the Internet has issues.

Poster Presentation: If you chose to create a poster, you need to submit it as a PDF for printing no later than May 1. Locate a foam board backing to make your poster sturdy. Specifically you will want a 20×30 Foam Board which you can purchase at Walmart or another similar store. It is also recommended that you purchase double-sided tape or spray adhesive (glue will make your poster wavy) to mount the poster to the board.


STEP 9: Rehearse

Ask your friends/family to help you rehearse your presentation. Use the guide “Giving a Good Presentation” by Joseph A Gallian for tips. Try to anticipate what the audience or people who stop by your table might ask and be prepared with answers.