Poster Tips

Tips for Creating Effective Poster Presentations

Make sure your poster fits into the 4’ wide by 3’ high displaying space available to you.  (if you use the attached template, you will be fine)  Be careful not to put text or images too close to the edge as they may get cut off by the printing process.

Use large point serif fonts (times, arial, and other typeface fonts), nothing smaller than 24 point is recommended, so that it can be read easily from at least 3 feet.  You may also need to thicken lines on figures to be seen from the same distance.

Minimize text in favor of using images that you can explain orally to your audience.

Title should not exceed two lines. Author(s) should be below the title, and your department and institution should be below the Author line.

Clearly state your hypotheses and conclusions.

Use bold, bright, primary colors to illustrate your images.  Try to use a consistent color theme throughout the poster (i.e. control = red, experimental = blue in all three figures).  Avoid unusual color choices as they may not render on the printer the same way as your computer screen.  Pastels (i.e. Excel defaults) can also be hard to distinguish from each other.

Provide enough background information so the readers understand the scientific questions being addressed.

Describe the basic methods being used in your figure legends instead of a separate methods section.

Present data in a clear format, i.e. easy to read tables, graphs, and figures. Your results section should have a summary in paragraph or bullet form.  Include legends for all figures and tables.

Arrange the information your poster so that it ‘flows’ and clearly label tables and graphs.

Aim for 500-800 words. Anything over 1000 is too wordy.

Proofread, proofread, proofread, once these posters are printed, there is no changing them.

Prepare your poster early, it will take longer than you think and you don’t want to be rushing at the last minute.


Resources for how to construct a poster:

“Ten Simple Rules for a Good Poster Presentations” 

“Designing Conference Posters”


Poster Templates:

“Make Signs Free Templates”

“Poster Presentations Free Templates”