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Creating a Conference Poster

Things to Consider

Before thinking about content, layout, and style, you need to carefully read the conference poster guidelines.  In particular, determine the following:

  • Are there restrictions on the poster dimensions and orientation?Conference Poster Guidelines Example
  • How will the poster be mounted?
    • Will the poster need to be mounted on a poster board? If so, who provides the poster board?  Where are the creases in the poster board (so you avoid placing text and image in the gutter)? 
    • Will the poster be hanging from a wall or frame? If so, will the mechanism holding the poster influence your poster layout.
    • Will the poster be displayed on a monitor or TV screen?  If so, what file format does the poster need to be submitted in?  Are there any instructions on creating a poster for ideal screen resolution?
  • Will you have table space?
    • In some cases (particularly when poster board mounting is required), your poster will be on a table.  Some conferences permit you to place objects, documents, handouts, etc. in the table space in front of your poster.  This is a great way of sharing supplemental information, should a conference attendee be interested in learning more.
  • Are you expected to be at the poster at all times?
    • Some conferences permit attendees to leave their posters unattended so the poster's creator(s) can view other work.  If this is the case, your poster should be self-explanatory so that attendees can understand your research without you being present.

Example: Dialogos Guidelines

The Dialogos Presentation Format Details document outlines the requirements for poster presentations, including:

Poster - Poster presentations are a detailed showcase of completed research including summarized information using brief written statements and graphic materials, such as graphs, charts, figures and photographs mounted on a poster board, the dimensions of which need not go beyond the allocated space per poster. Poster presentations must meet the following requirements:

  • Poster size will be 36x48 (landscape only)
  • Students can use the provided PowerPoint template or make modifications as long as:
    • The poster size is unaltered
    • The student keeps content in the three column structure
    • The Baker logo/shield remains on the poster where it is found on the template
  • The lead author must be in attendance at the conference
  • If the Faculty sponsor is included on the poster, it should be in the acknowledgements section.
  • Posters must be submitted in JPEG File Interchange Format

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Additionally, it is helpful to know that your poster will be hung from metal frames using binder clips.  No table space is allocated for poster presentations.  The conference organizers expect that at least one of the researchers associated with the poster will be on hand to answer questions throughout the poster session time block.