The Faculty of Health Sciences' annual Research Conference was a comprehensive and exciting mix of research and innovation. The Conference is a major component of the Faculty's research development strategy, with the aim of nurturing young and emerging researchers, and recognising established researchers. Participants presented their research in the form of oral and poster presentations.
A new addition to this year's Research Conference was the Soapbox, a competition where undergraduate students present their research, protocol or concept in no more than three minutes. It is loosely based on the global initiative of a three-minute thesis, where students have to present their thesis in three minutes using only three slides. The Soapbox allowed any research projects or interesting topics to be presented, but no PowerPoint slides could be used. Instead, the participants were encouraged to use posters, flip charts and any other props they could think of.
Prof Tiaan de Jager, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences with all the prize winners
The event spanned one and a half days. This year there were 58 oral presentations, 32 poster presentations and 132 posters on display. At the postgraduate level (MSc and higher), prizes were awarded for the best contributions in clinical and pre-clinical research, while undergraduate and honours students competed for an undergraduate prize.
The keynote speakers highlighted opportunities for collaboration, expanding research through innovation and building a bridge between basic and clinical research. The academic programme concluded with a session on ethical issues related to children, research ethics and current issues. A distinctive feature of the event was a painted handprint representing the commitment of staff and students to research in the Faculty. The 2017 Health Sciences Research Conference was a resounding success and contributed to the stimulation of interesting debates, networking, learning and innovation among all who attended. The award function was attended by more than 200 staff and students. The Olympus a capella group performed during the event. Prof Tiaan de Jager, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, said he was very proud of all the exciting new things happing on the research front.
Prof De Jager with the Faculty Day hand print pledge poster