During ReSEARCH Dialogues, students present their projects and explain them to others.

Access the 2020 Research Dialogues online collection at: scholar.utc.edu/research-dialogues/2020/

Every April, ReSEARCH Dialogues— the largest academic conference on campus—brings together university and Chattanooga community members to showcase scholarship and creative works of faculty, staff and students from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and beyond,

But like many other events, the two-day ReSEARCH Dialogues completely transformed this spring when campus shut down in response to COVID-19.

Instead of large congregations of poster presentations, pitch competitions and more in the University Center, ReSEARCH Dialogues— Hosted by the Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Endeavor (URaCE)— carved out an online space to highlight participants’ work with the help of UTC Library staff and resources.

“I am always impressed with the dedication that URaCE has to creating great venues to develop and showcase student research,” said Rachel Fleming, Scholarly Communications librarian.

“I really appreciated their commitment to creating an alternate opportunity for the 2020 ReSEARCH Dialogues conference after the cancellation of the in-person event,” added Fleming, who created the online ReSEARCH Dialogues space.

To find an online home for the event, she used UTC Scholar, a library platform already used to provide open access to UTC research, creative works and publications.

Nearly 700 students, faculty, staff and community members registered to present their ReSEARCH Dialogues projects this year. The submitted work is accessible by anyone from anywhere,

“I would like to thank all of the 2020 ReSEARCH Dialogue presenters for their research contributions, and for their understanding as we worked through this incredible challenge,” said Lisa Piazza, director of undergraduate research and creative endeavor. “This demonstrates the grit and resiliency of our amazing campus community. We commend your hard work and scholarly achievements.”

To date, the online collection has had more than 1,600 visits from 22 different countries.

However, while there usually are winners selected in undergraduate, graduate and faculty presentations, none will be chosen this year since it wasn’t possible to have the live competitions that determine the winners.

Fleming said UTC Scholar will be used to archive works from future ReSEARCH Dialogues conferences, making the projects available to a wider audience.

“Having ReSEARCH Dialogues conference proceedings in UTC Scholars showcases the research of UTC students, faculty, and community members openly with other researchers in the state and around the world, expanding the reach of our work.”

Media Relations Contacts: Email Shawn Ryan or call 423-425-4363.

Sarah is a staff writer in UTC's Office of Communications and Marketing.

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