NSERC Science Exposed Photo Contest 2024


Science Exposed is a contest organized by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and devoted exclusively to images of scientific research, in all fields of study. In 2016, NSERC was proud to collaborate with the Association francophone pour le savoir (Acfas) and open La preuve par l'image to candidates all across Canada. Acfas is responsible for the Francophone segment of the contest, La prevue par l'image, and NSERC is responsible for the Anglophone segment, Science Exposed.

This contest is important because...

  • Researchers create, capture and use images that are vital to scientific discussion, education and knowledge dissemination.
  • Images are a powerful way of teaching and communicating.
  • Images are now ubiquitous in everyday life. Thanks to digital technology, the use of images has skyrocketed, especially on the Internet, which has become a highly visual learning medium.
  • Researchers are being more frequently asked to share their work with the public and images are an effective, relatable way to share scientific knowledge. They can convey emotion, beauty and even surprise while also fostering curiosity.

Contest goals

  • Showcase images of Canadian research
  • Foster interest in science and scientific curiosity in all audiences
  • Build a database of scientific images of Canadian research
  • Contribute to the advancement of knowledge and to new uses of scientific images


Eligible contestants must fit into any of the following categories:

  • College or university undergraduate students who are doing research (such students must apply as a member of a group, together with their research professor)
  • Student researchers at the Master's or doctoral level, or postdoctoral researchers.
  • Research professors in a post-secondary institution or any other individual conducting research in a college, polytechnic or university setting.
  • Researchers in a public or private research centre.
  • Contestants must be Canadian citizens, permanent residents or foreign students living in Canada enrolled at a Canadian institution. For group submissions, the group leader and the majority of the group members must meet these criteria.

Eligibility criteria for images:

  • Contestants, whether individuals or members of groups, can submit only one image.
  • All types of image technologies may be used (for example, photography using either natural light or other spectra, images produced by optical or electronic instruments, computer-generated images, images from models, drawings, diagrams, graphs, etc.).
  • Images must be directly related to and created in the context of the contestant’s research.
  • Images may come from any field of research in the natural sciences, engineering, social sciences, humanities or health sciences, but not from research in the arts (defined to include visual arts, media arts and research on artistic creation).
  • An image may be enhanced or modified, but any changes must not alter its meaning. Colourization and graphic processing of images using software such as Photoshop© are permitted to clarify or accentuate certain content, but these changes must not misrepresent or distort the content.
  • File size must not exceed 99 megabytes; upload times may vary depending on the speed of your Internet connection, particularly for larger files.
  • Images must be submitted in their original format, not in a compressed file.
  • Images may be submitted in one of three file formats: .png, .tiff or .jpg.


Jury Prizes (x3) worth $2,000
People's Choice worth $2,000


If College-level review is required, your College will communicate its earlier internal deadlines.

External Deadline

Images may be submitted online using the form found on the NSERC Science Exposed application portal.

How to Apply

Images must be submitted with a three-part text description: a catchy title, a plain-language explanation of the research presented in the image and a description of the technique or technology used to create the image. All three parts must be submitted online along with the image. Images may be submitted online using the form found on the NSERC Science Exposed application portal.

For More Information

For more information, contact Comm@nserc-crsng.gc.ca or ailsakay@uoguelph.ca. Please also visit the NSERC Science Exposed web-page.

Alert Classifications
Honours and Awards

Health and Life Sciences
Information and Communications Technology
Physical Sciences and Engineering
Social Sciences