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Summer Research Program

Monday, July 22 at 10:00 AM
Des Moines University, Des Moines, IA, 50312 Show Map

Research is vital and at DMU students are vital to research.

Contributions from students are vital in helping move campus research forward. The Mentored Student Research Program is an excellent opportunity for students to highlight their research findings. We’re excited to offer both oral and poster presentations and all summer research students are invited to participate. Students may present on any topic or experience related to research.



9:30 a.m. Registration and poster presentations
Location: Olsen Medical Education Center
10 a.m.


Jeffrey Gray, Ph.D.
Vice president for Research, director of Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences, professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Des Moines University

Rachel Reimer, Ph.D.
Chair of the Research and Grants Committee, assistant professor of Master of Public Health, Des Moines University

10:15 a.m.

Keynote address The Biopsychosocial Model and the Prevention of Chronic Pain

Robert J. Gatchel, Ph.D., ABPP
Chair and distinguished professor of the Department of Psychology, College of Science at The University of Texas at Arlington

  1. Describe the heuristic value of the biopsychosocial model of chronic pain.
  2. Appraise the treatment and cost benefits of early intervention in order to avoid the development of chronic problems.
  3. Assess the major components of an early intervention program.
11:15 a.m. Presentation of certificates and recognition of scholarship recipients
11:45 a.m. Lunch and poster presentations
1 p.m.

Oral presentations

Location: Ryan Hall 181, 281, SEC #115, MEC

Keynote speaker


Robert J. Gatchel, Ph.D., ABPP
Chair and distinguished professor of the Department of Psychology, College of Science at The University of Texas at Arlington

Robert J. Gatchel received his BA in Psychology, Summa Cum Laude, in 1969 from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, and his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 1973 from the University of Wisconsin. He is also a Diplomate of the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP). Dr. Gatchel is currently the Chair and Distinguished Professor of the Department of Psychology, College of Science, at The University of Texas at Arlington, as well as the Nancy P. & John G. Penson Endowed Professor of Clinical Health Psychology. In addition, he is a Clinical Professor at The Eugene McDermott Center for Pain Management, Department of Anesthesiology & Pain Management, at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, as well as the Director of Biopsychosocial Research at the University of North Texas Health Sciences Center, Ft. Worth.

Dr. Gatchel has always been involved in new “cutting edge” areas of science and medicine. He has conducted extensive evidence-based clinical research, much of it continuously funded for the past 30 years by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He was also the recipient of consecutive Research Scientist Development Awards from NIH, and a prestigious Senior Scientist Award from NIH. His major areas of clinical and research expertise involve the following: the biopsychosocial approach to the etiology, assessment, treatment and prevention of chronic stress and pain behavior; the comorbidity of physical and mental health disorders; and clinical health psychology. He has published over 240 journal articles, 100 book chapters and has authored or edited 23 books

Dr. Gatchel’s research has strengthened the biopsychosocial approach to physical and mental health disorders and made possible the early identification and successful treatment of patients at risk for the development of chronic pain. He has led many in the medical profession to carefully consider salient psychological and social factors. His tireless leadership in the area of health psychology has inspired his colleagues in the field of psychology and numerous medical specialties.

Dr. Gatchel has been a major participant in science and pain management education. To date, he has trained and mentored 65 Ph.D. graduate students, 6 postdoctoral Fellows, 32 Masters level students, and numerous junior faculty members. Many of these have gone onto prestigious careers in academia and pain management.

Oral presentations

At least one student from each lab is required to do an oral presentation of their research. If the work is co-authored, only the first author will submit on behalf of all co-authors. The names of all co-authors must be listed in the submission form.

Presentations will be organized into sessions grouped by topics or disciplines, with each presenter allotted 12 minutes to speak and 3 minutes for audience questions. For work with multiple authors, the authors can decide among themselves their various roles in presenting within the 12 minute limit. A moderator keeps track of your presentation time and may also facilitate the discussion. Microsoft PowerPoint 2010 will be used to project slides. Please make sure your presentation is compatible with this program. If you prefer to use a MAC computer or have video files, arrangements must be made prior to the program and you will be responsible for bringing an adaptor. Please contact DMU CME at cme@dmu.edu or 515-271-1596. Presentation and video files should be stored on USB drives.


Poster presentations

If the work is co-authored, only the first author will submit on behalf of all co-authors. The names of all co-authors must be listed in the submission form.

Posters should be no more than 5′ wide and 4′ high and printed by the DMU print shop (details below). Materials to hang your poster will be available onsite. On the day of the program, posters must be displayed in the MEC by 9:30 a.m. and removed by 3:30 p.m.

Posters are displayed throughout the day. Please do not remove your poster until the end of the day’s activities.
You must be available, next to your poster durin
g the Poster Session, from 9:30 – 10 a.m. and 12:15 – 1 p.m., to explain and answer questions about your research. During this time, stand to the side of your display so that you do not block it.

Prepare and practice a short summary speech—no more than 3 minutes—about your project. This is an excellent networking opportunity, so it is important to speak and interact professionally. You will receive lots of feedback and exposure as well.


Poster printing guidelines

  • Posters for the program must be printed at the DMU print shop and emailed to printshop@dmu.edu.
  • Download the DMU print shop directions for creating a student poster.
  • Please print in seminar presentation size (32.45” x 42” or 42” x 54.35”) (non-matted and non-laminated).
  • The account number to use for printing costs is #110-1435-50994.
  • For poster printing questions, please contact Brenda at 515-271-1402.
  • Posters will need to be submitted to the print shop and proofs signed by Tuesday, July 16 at 3 p.m.
  • The poster will not be reviewed for academic content.

IRB or IACUC approval

If your project involves human or animal research, you must have obtained such approval, unless you are clearly presenting your work as a proposed project and make it clear that absolutely no research has yet been conducted. Such criteria would be met only in the poster sessions; anyone giving an oral presentation on a project involving human or animal research must have an Institutional Review Board (IRB) or Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) approval. For questions, please contact your mentor or the DMU Office of Research at mollie.lyon@dmu.edu or 515-271-1445.



All abstracts will be published in the meeting program. Please submit your abstract according to the following guidelines:

  • Format: Microsoft Word format
  • Font: Arial, 11 point
  • Margins: 1.25″ left border. 1″ remaining borders
  • Spacing: Single-spaced
  • Justification: Left
  • Abstract body length: No more than 250 words
  • Type the title first, using title casing.
  • Capitalize the first letter of each word except prepositions, articles and species names. Italicize scientific names of organisms.
  • List all authors, institutional affiliations and short addresses (city and state only).
  • Asterisk and bold the author delivering the paper.

Writing tips

  1. Consider the following questions when preparing your abstract:
  2. Does the abstract clearly state the aim of the project (i.e. a research question, theoretical issue, or problem)?
  3. Is the significance of work clearly stated?
  4. If relevant, are the methods, data collection, and analysis procedures well-designed and appropriate to the question addressed?
  5. Are the conclusions justified in relation to the data and/or analysis/description?
  6. Is the abstract written clearly and organized well?

Dress Code

Business casual.

Frequently asked questions

Have questions regarding the Summer Research Program. Click here. If your question isn’t answered, please contact DMU CME at cme@dmu.edu or 515-271-1596.


There is not a fee to attend, but registration is encouraged.

Please note these important dates:

  • Abstract submission deadline: Tuesday, July 16.
  • Posters submitted to print shop: Tuesday, July 16.


Vanessa Ross, CMP
Manager, Continuing Medical Education

Mollie Lyon
Administrative Assistant, Research

Des Moines University (DMU) prohibits discrimination in employment, educational programs, and activities on the basis of race, national origin, color, creed, religion, sex, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or associational preference. The University also affirms its commitment to providing equal opportunities and equal access to University facilities. Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend DMU sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this activity, please contact the DMU CME office at 515-271-1596 or cme@dmu.edu prior to the activity.