About the Student Research Competition

The ACM Student Research Competition (SRC), sponsored by Microsoft, offers a unique forum for undergraduate and graduate students to present their original research before a panel of judges and attendees at well-known ACM-sponsored and co-sponsored conferences.

Recognizing the value of student participation at conferences, ACM started the program in 2003, but it is much more than just a travel funding program. The ACM SRC provides participants a chance to meet other students and to get direct feedback on their work from experts.

This year's competitions took place at 24 participating conferences, sponsored by SIGACCESS, SIGARCH, SIGCHI, SIGCOMM, SIGCSE, SIGDA,SIGDOC, SIGGRAPH, SIGHPC, SIGMIS, SIGMOBILE, SIGPLAN, SIGACT, SIGSAC, SIGSOFT and SIGSPATIAL and included more than 330 student participants.

The program is administered by Nanette Hernandez at ACM, Dr. Laurie Ann Williams at North Carolina State University, and Dr. Evelyne Viegas at Microsoft, Redmond, WA.

2017 ACM SRC Grand Finals Winners Announced

Kazem Cheshmi, Omid Abari, Calvin Loncaric, Victor Lanvin, Jennifer Vaccaro and Martin Kellogg were the 2017 Grand Finals winners of ACM’s Student Research Competition. The SRC Grand Finals are the culmination of a year-long competition that involved more than 339 computer science students presenting research projects at 24 major ACM conferences.

[News release]


Graduate Category: First Place

Kazem Cheshmi, Rutgers University
"Decoupling Symbolic from Numeric in Sparse Matrix Computations" (CGO 2017)

Sympiler is a domain-speci c code generator that optimizes sparse matrix computations by decoupling the symbolic analysis phase from the numerical manipulation stage in sparse codes. The computation patterns in sparse numerical methods are guided by the input sparsity structure and the sparse algorithm itself.... [Read more]

Graduate Category: Second Place

Omid Abari, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
"Cutting the Cord in Virtual Reality" (MobiCom 2016)

Today’s virtual reality (VR) headsets require a cable connection to a PC or game console. This cable significantly limits the player’s mobility and hence her VR experience... [Read more]

Graduate Category: Third Place

Calvin Loncaric, University of Washington
"Cozy: Synthesizing Collection Data Structures" (FSE 2016)

Many applications require specialized data structures not found in standard libraries. Implementing new data structures is tedious and error-prone. To alleviate this difficulty, we built a tool that does so automatically: it synthesizes efficient data structures from short, simple, declarative specifications.... [Read more]

Undergraduate Category: First Place

Victor Lanvin, ENS Paris Saclay
"Gradual Set-Theoretic Types" (POPL 2017)

A static type system can be an extremely powerful tool for a programmer, providing early error detection, and offering strong compile-time guarantees on the behavior of a program. However, compared to dynamic typing, static typ- ing often comes at the expense of development speed and flexibility, as statically-typed code might be more difficult to adapt to changing requirements. Gradual typing is a recent and promising approach that tries to get the best of both worlds [16].... [Read more]

Undergraduate Category: Second Place

Jennifer Vaccaro, Olin College of Engineering
"Applying Computer Modeling to Post-Silicon Electrical Validation" (ICCAD 2016)

Because the post-silicon validation process requires a high amount of effort from engineers, we propose the use of a variety of modeling techniques to tune the silicon. Black-box models interpolate measured physical data (Kriging), while white-box models generate simplified simulation data with some correlation to the physical data. .... [Read more]

Undergraduate Category: Third Place

Martin Kellogg, University of Washington
"Combining Bug Detection and Test Case Generation" (FSE 2016)

Detecting bugs in software is an important software engineering activity. Static bug finding tools can assist in detecting bugs automatically, but they suffer from high false positive rates. .... [Read more]

Students can gain many tangible and intangible rewards from participating in one of ACM’s Student Research Competitions. With a generous sponsorship of $120,000 per competition year from Microsoft, the ACM Student Research Competition is an internationally recognized venue enabling undergraduate and graduate students to earn:

  • Awards: cash prizes, medals, and ACM student memberships
  • Prestige: Grand Finalists and their advisors are invited to the Annual ACM Awards Banquet, where they are recognized for their accomplishments
  • Visibility: opportunities to meet with researchers in their field of interest and make important connections
  • Experience: opportunities to sharpen communication, visual, organizational, and presentation skills in preparation for the SRC experience

“Participating in the SRC was an amazing opportunity. It was my first time attending any conference, and it really showed me how to pitch my research project, and interact with other researchers. I will carry this experience with me in my future academic and professional endeavors.” 

— Michele Hu,Cornell Tech

“It was a great opportunity to be able to present at ACM SRC the work developed during a study abroad experience in the USA. Working with students from other places with different backgrounds was an incredible experience. That was my first time presenting in a conference and it felt great to expose our research, discuss it and get invaluable feedback. It was an amazing chance to train my research pitch and share ideas with others.”

Clarissa Tuxen, Fluminense Federal University
Grace Hopper 2016

ACM Student Research Competition

The ACM Student Research Competition, sponsored by Microsoft, is an internationally recognized venue enabling undergraduate and graduate students to experience the research world, share research results and exchange ideas, rub shoulders with academic and industry luminaries, understand the practical applications of their research and gain recognition.