Grad Slam

Grad Slam Competition

The Graduate Center is proud to support the Grad Slam Competition at CSULB. Winners of the Grad Slam will receive cash prizes and gain valuable experience delivering a professional research presentation. 

This competition is designed to showcase and celebrate graduate students and their research and creative activities. Graduate students across all disciplines are encouraged to participate in the Grad Slam Competition. 

Submissions for the CSULB Grad Slam are now closed. Two first-place winners from the CSULB Grad Slam competition will be selected to advance to the CSU-Wide Grad Slam competition on May 3, 2024.

Congratulations to the CSULB 2024 Grad Slam Winners!




Graduate Program



Javier Fernandez

Religious Studies


Ellen Tatevosyan

Psychological Research


Lauren Munoz

Educational Leadership



Zach Merson

Biological Sciences


Jaclyn Caballero

Education Leadership


Neha Sandhu

Aerospace Engineering

Thank You Faculty Judges!

2024 Grad Slam Guidelines

Grad Slam at CSULB is a campus-wide competition for the best 3-minute (or shorter) graduate student research presentation.  A panel will judge the pre-recorded video presentations on comprehension, content, engagement, and oration.  Successful Grad Slam participants will engage a non-specialist audience, while communicating key details about their research. Submissions must showcase original research from their thesis, dissertation, graduate project, or any other research-based projects. Students in MFA and other creative degree programs may focus on how their creative work applies to the broader exchange of ideas and the role it plays in providing new perspective or changing attitudes.

  • Must be a currently enrolled master’s or doctoral students at CSULB during Spring 2024.
  • Must be presenting on independent research or projects, including independent research projects done for a graduate-level class.
  • May come from any discipline or field of study.
  • Must present individually (i.e., group presentations are not permitted).

  • Advance the visibility of your research.
  • Practice delivering a professional presentation in your field.
  • Add valuable experience to your CV or résumé.
  • Represent CSULB.

In addition, winners of the CSULB Grad Slam will receive cash prizes in the following amounts:

  • $500 first-place winners
  • $300 second-place winners 
  • $200 third-place winners

Two first-place winners from the CSULB Grad Slam competition will be selected to advance to the CSU-Wide Grad Slam competition on May 3, 2024 hosted by CSU Long Beach.

  • Upload a 3-minute (or shorter) video communicating key details about one's research to a non-specialist audience (exceeding 3 minutes will incur a penalty by the judges).
  • Only a single slide/visual is permitted in the presentation (no slide transitions or animations).
  • Use any video recording platform to create and record your video, and then submit the public facing URL so judges can view without logging-in/creating an account. Recommended platforms include Zoom (CSULB SSO), YouTube, and Vimeo. Check out the Zoom Support page to navigate recording settings. 
  • No additional electronic media (e.g., sound or video files) may be submitted separately from the video recording. Use of any supporting materials must be pre-approved from the Grad Slam Committee (including use of any props) and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
  • Each presentation will be judged using a common Competition Scoring Rubric (see below).
  • Applicants must submit original research, scholarly, or creative activity from their thesis, dissertation, graduate project, or any other research-based projects.

Note: Presenters will not be judged on video/ recording quality, editing capabilities, or production quality of their video. Instead, judging will focus primarily on the presentation, ability to communicate research to a non-specialist audience, and the PowerPoint slide (see Competition Scoring Rubric).

If you have any questions about the pre-recorded video guidelines, contact:


  • Language: Topic and significance communicated to non-specialist audience
  • Organization: Followed a clear and logical sequence
  • Clarity: Adequate background knowledge provided


  • Significance: Explained the impact of results


  • Visual: Well-designed, clear, legible, concise slide; emphasized major points; enhanced presentation
  • Captivating:  Piqued intellectual curiosity


  • Delivery:  Well-Paced, enthusiastic, confident, body language, and dynamic

Below are sample videos that interested participants may reference while creating their own presentation. You are welcome to record your video from home, and you are encouraged to record your video via Zoom or Canva and share a public facing URL in your submission.

2023 CSULB Non-STEM First Place: Andrew Loyd Smith


2023 CSULB STEM First Place: Kayleigh Hart


Kate Forest (2022) Kanav Saraf (2020)
CSU Grad Slam Finals 2023 CSU Grad Slam Finals 2022



Hauth Center

The Hauth Center offers individualized assistance to help students become effective public speakers. Consultants at the Hauth Center use their expertise and multimedia technology to provide feedback in order to improve one’s presentation skills.

The Hauth Center is offering 15-minute coaching session to work with participants on how to more effectively communicate their message using the Grad Slam rubric and criteria.

To schedule a 15-minute coaching sessions to practice, visit (students can schedule multiple coaching sessions).


Submissions for the CSULB Grad Slam are now closed.