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Poster Presentations: Introduction

What is a poster presentation?


A poster is a concise attractive visual representation of your scholarly research (Lamar, 2019). Posters may be prepared as part of a

  • class assignment
  • research display
  • promotional event highlighting work done in the college
  • professional conference or seminar (Pitt, 2018)

A typical poster combines succinct text and appealing graphics and is commonly displayed on a wall, bulletin board, or screen (ASU, 2019).

Your poster needs to include information on six essential elements. It is recommended that each of these elements should have separate heading in your posters. These sections are :

1. Introduction to your research 2. Methods used to collect your research
3. Results of your research (if possible in graphical form) 4. Discussions of your research
5. Significance of your research

6. Sources used in your research

The format for a poster presentation may vary. For instance in some cases students may be asked to present their posters as part of a poster session. This would involve audiences walking through the poster displays, reviewing them from a short distance, and stopping to informally engage the presenter if they are interested. Therefore an important element in this poster presentation scenario would be the verbal skills of the presenter. The event organisers will generally have guidelines for this situation including details of overall dimensions, components to be included, time-frames for set-up and dismantling posters, specific periods during which the presenter must be available at the poster and whether handouts for the audience are permissible (UCLA, 2019). More advice on this scenario is provided later in the guide on this topic.

Posters are widely used across the scientific community and other disciplines as a means of improving students poster design, presentation and networking skills. This is demonstrated by the creation of ACRL (American College of Research Libraries) Visual Literacy Framework.

This guide is aimed at assisting people creating a poster who have never such undertaken such a task before.However if you have previous experience designing posters, this guide may help you improve your next poster.