2013 DHS Research Day Poster Presentation Guidelines
A poster presentation allows a lot of information to be presented visually while remaining in a clear and concise format that delivers a lot of key insights and useful information. The 2013 Research Day is excited that there will be nearly thirty posters presented at each campus offering students and faculty a unique opportunity to access rich content on practices, strategies, lessons learned, and research findings. To provide some guidance in your poster preparation, we offer the following step-by-step guidance:
Step 1: Know Your Poster Space
Each poster should be no larger than 6' x4' feet (72' wide x 48" high) and no smaller than 4' x 3' in size. Poster presenters are responsible for deciding how they wish to design their poster space. Push pins will be provided to allow the posters to be affixed to the display boards. In Meridian they will be affixed to a wall using adhesive putty and/or tape.
Step 2: Organize Your Information
Poster presentations tend to cover facts, program explanations, or insights about an intervention or service delivery. However, it will improve the quality of the poster presentation if you also think about how the poster can be used as a presentation tool that ultimately will provide a compelling learning opportunity. You may wish to include some thought and consideration as to how the topic has implications for the broader field; what might be inspiring or offer potential breakthroughs; and, perhaps most importantly in an educational setting of collaboration, how can the information being shared be transferable to other programs/situations.
Below are suggested categories of information (explanatory text and/or graphic information) to include in a poster. Poster presenters are not required to use these categories and may modify them or use other categories to organize their posters. However, all presenters should focus on providing a clear story about the information being presented.
- Headers. Include a Title, Authors, Agency, Location.
- Titles. This should go on the top. State what you did, learned, what happened in the title and present this information in a manner designed to attract viewers. Remember, the title is the advertisement that encourages others to take the time to read the poster and talk to you as the presenter of the information.
- Authors. Put authors' names and affiliations on the second line, after the poster title.
- Introduction. Describe the topic/activity/program/problem that is the subject of your poster, providing readers with a clear overview. The introduction should contain 3 to 5 clear sentences that explain the poster subject matter and the focus of the presentation (e.g., what was the target of the research, what was being explored, what statement of problem was being examined).
- Methods/Activities. Describe what was done. This might include the methodology, the interventions provided, or other actions taken.
- Results. Describe what happened, using text, graphs, or tables. Visual elements should be self-explanatory and/or be accompanying by clear explanatory legends. An interpretation of results may be also prove helpful to those who are reading your poster.
- Lessons Learned/Implications for further research. Provide observations, recommendations, tips, and insights that other programs might be able to use in their own work. In particular, focus on specifics that can readily be used and/or adapted by programs, researchers and clinicians who may have similar needs or interest.
Step 3: Preparing Your Poster
To bring attention to your presentation, effective use of the elements of text, graphics, and tables is crucial given that posters are viewed by people informally, usually briefly, and mostly without the added benefit of a presenter. Below are design considerations to maximize the impact of your poster.
- Order of Materials. Make it clear to viewers what to read first and in what order. One option is to number sections/pages on the poster board. Placement of sections also is important (e.g., left to right, use of arrows).
- Tabular Data. Tables work well for presenting categories of data and tend to work better than graphs when the goal is to present data under a small number of categories.
- Graphs. Examples of graphs include bar charts and pie charts. They work well in giving users a big-picture insight into findings. When using graphs, it is usually best to put explanatory text next to the graphic data being explained.
- Text: Amount and Design. Aim for brevity. However, the complexity of your content
does not have to be sacrificed-if attention is paid to presenting information according to
- Type Size. Typically, posters will be viewed in exhibit halls by persons standing anywhere from 1-6 feet away.
- Font Style. San serif is preferable.
- Case. Use upper and lower case; avoid all caps.
- Headers. Font size no less than 1 inch high, which will be readable 6 feet away.
- Body Text. Font size no less than ½ inch high, which is readable from 4 feet away.
- Colors and Other Text Treatment. Color is not crucial to an effective poster but it certainly can help. Avoid too many colors-more than three in most cases-as it can become distracting. If not using color, a poster using only black-white can be very effective with use of techniques like white space, shading, and font sizes. Lettering should be bold. If you will be posting typed material, use a large font size (20 to 24 point font) on white, pale yellow or cream colored non-glossy paper. Use 1-inch margins. Avoid use of fancy fonts.
- Abbreviations/Acronyms. Avoid them, unless they are well understood by your audience.
- Walk-Away Sheets: Handouts and Cards. A select number of viewers will want to learn more and contact you later. While you might consider bringing a limited number of handout copies of your poster, think "green" and bring business cards or just post your email and/or phone number on the poster for those wishing to contact you to receive a copy or talk more about your work.
Step 4: Poster Setup, Meet the Presenter Session, Poster Breakdown
Poster set-up will be allowed the afternoon before Research Day from 4-5 p.m. in Pocatello and will be available from 8:00 - 8:30 at both locations on the morning of March 15th. Poster Presentations will be held from approximately 12:00 p.m. until 1:00 p.m. at each location. At least one of the authors of the poster is expected to be present at the exhibition to entertain questions and discussion with attendees. Tear down will occur at the end of the event or after 1:00 p.m. the afternoon of March 15.
In addition, in order to reach a wider audience and expand the potential impact of the Research Day presentations, the Committee is requesting that a PDF file with the completed poster design be provided to the Research Day Committee to allow an online brochure to be created after the event has passed.
For clarification or questions, please contact a member of the Research Day Committee (listed below for your convenience).
Thank you! We look forward to a great set of presentations.
Lisa Salazar email@example.com
John Batacan firstname.lastname@example.org
Amy Hardy email@example.com
Elizabeth Fore firstname.lastname@example.org
Eydie Kendall email@example.com
Julie Melton firstname.lastname@example.org
Wendy Mickelsen email@example.com
Joan Weddington firstname.lastname@example.org