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Creating Effective Posters

Use this guide to get ideas for designing scholarly research posters.

Presenting your Poster

Before the Poster Session

  • Submit your poster, in the appropriate file type, to your conference or class
  • Confirm when and where you will be hanging, presenting, and taking down your poster
  • Gather supplies (pins, tape, etc.) to hang your poster
  • Prepare a brief talk that explains your poster (what you did, what you found, and why it is important)
  • Practice answering questions that could come up about your research
  • If desired, create handouts that provide additional information about your research
  • Consider bringing water - you may spend a lot of time talking!

During the Poster Session

  • Stand next to, but do not block, your poster
  • Engage interested viewers by responding to their questions, and asking questions about them
  • Make eye contact with people passing by, but do not corral them
  • Do not allow one viewer to monopolize your time; get contact information and offer to speak to or correspond with the person at another time
  • Memorize the general layout of your poster so you don't need to turn your back to visitors when showing them components 
  • If you are presenting outside of CWU, make sure to tell visitors where you are from!

Business Cards

  • Remember to bring your business cards or contact information to your Research Poster or Presentation Session! 
  • This will help you network and connect with those interested in your poster.  
  • You can also bring a notepad to collect the information of those that you talk to. 
  • It may help to write yourself a note about the conversation you had with particular people on the business cards they give you- this will help you keep track of the people you meet.

Credit: Tufts University Libraries.


How to Present an Academic Poster