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CMN 505: Methods in Applied Communication Research

This guide supports the Methods in Applied Communication Research course. Discover how to find information from multiple perspectives surrounding a topic.

What is a Poster Presentation?

A poster presentation is a form of scholarly communication used to present a researcher's work at professional conferences or seminars.

A typical poster combines text and graphics, mounted to a wall or bulletin board, in a visually attracting presentation.  Some posters sessions use a table to support a free-standing display, and may include handouts for the audience.  A professional poster session presents numerous posters at the same time in a large room.  Attendees walk by the presentations reviewing them and stopping to discuss them with the presenters.  

Commonly the sponsoring conference or seminar organizers establishes guidelines for the appearance of the posters, including overall dimensions, components to be included, time-frame for set-up and dismantling, and a specific period during which the presenter must be available to discuss the poster with attendees. 

Poster presentations combine succinct written communication skills, effective and appealing graphic display, and verbal skills.  

Widely used by the scientific community, there is an increased use of poster presentations in the social sciences and humanities. 

Guidelines for Preparing Posters

Most of the information in the sites below address preparing posters for the sciences.  Posters in the social sciences and humanities may not contain all the elements illustrated here and may be produced on presentation boards instead of full scale posters.  But the principle and guidelines remain the same for all disciplines. 

Here are some selected guides:

Online Poster Guide and Tutorial, University of Leicester

Designing Communications for a Poster Fair

Designing Conference Posters

Creating Effective Poster Presentations

Ten Simple Rules for a Good Poster Presentation

There are numerous other guides available, both online and published in journals.  A Google search for "poster session preparation" or "poster session guidelines" will return mor results than you could ever read.  

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