Presenting a Poster of your Research
At professional conferences, researchers can present the findings of their experiments in either formal oral presentations or in poster presentations.
Poster Sessions resemble high school science fairs
In a large room there will be rows of bulletin boards set up, one board for each researcher.
On the board, the poster is set up. The poster is a display that enables someone to understand what your research project was and what you discovered.
The general format of a poster follows that of an APA paper. The poster should have a title (with authors & affiliation), abstract, introduction, method, results, and discussion/conclusion section.
Sometimes posters are formatted with individual sheets glued onto a single larger colored cardboard background (see first example below), sometimes each individual sheet is glued onto its own smaller cardboard background (see second example below).
General Poster Formatting Example:
This is not the only way to format a poster though. Note the real example below.
Note that the above posters read vertically (up-down) and not from left to right. This is the typical format for posters. (the poster in the example has way to much text in my opinion).
People who are not familiar with your study should be able to quickly understand the purpose of your study, what you did, and what you found. Here are some tips on constructing effective posters.
Write your poster from scratch highlighting the key points from each section--do not simply cut and paste from your APA style paper (since it will be much too detailed and wordy). (The poster in the photograph above is way too wordy. It should not read as a paper.)
Prepare a heading indicating (a) the title of your paper and (b) the author(s) and (c) the affiliation for the top of your poster space. The lettering for the heading should be at least 1" high; use both upper- and lower-case lettering.
Your poster should include the following sections: Abstract, Introduction (including hypotheses), Methods, Subjects, Procedures, Results, and Conclusions
Headings above each poster section should indicate its contents and identify the appropriate sequence for viewing the poster by clearly visible numbers, letters or arrows
Avoid fonts that utilize script or are difficult to read
use a large font (at least 18 point) that can be read from a distance of a few feet away
Written material should be concise. Save unessential but helpful or interesting secondary points for discussion with your viewers.
Graphs, charts and tables are particularly eye-catching at poster sessions, and can make it easier to visually understand what you did and what the results were.
Your printed conclusions should permit observers to focus on a concise statement of your central findings that lends itself to informal discussion.
Do not write paragraphs (the abstract is the exception) (no one wants to sit and read through a long paragraph).
When in doubt, edit out - crowded cluttered posters are difficult to read and are often disregarded. Remember, make sure every item in your poster is necessary. Your poster should stimulate discussion, not give a long presentation.
One way to provide information is through using a "bullet" method (to separate key sentences and points), that summarizes the evidence or conclusions, such as is used in this section. It makes the presentation lucid and easy for the reader to follow.
A poster is a visual presentation of information. Rely sparingly on verbal print, rely on a lot of graphs, charts, tables, and pictures to communicate information. What verbal text you use should focus on the main points of your design, rationale, etc., and be legible from a distance of 3 feet.
As a visual presentation, effective poster presentations need to draw the audience in (be attractive) and communicate important information simply and clearly. Effective posters are laid out in a sequence, are symmetrical, and use color to enhance the presentation when appropriate. It is a good idea to lay your poster out at home to see how it looks, and then adjust until you have it the way you like.
Posters do not stand alone, however. Your availability and interaction style will also influence the number of people who read your poster and talk with you about it. Be at your poster at all times during the session. Use inviting behaviors, e.g., nonverbals such as smiling and making eye contact with viewers and verbals such as 'Hello. Would you like me to explain the study I conducted? etc.' to initiate conversation.
Specific Requirements for the Poster for Psyc008:
Your poster is on the same study you proposed in your second APA paper.
Your poster is limited in space to three feet wide by three feet high (and should be able to be attached to the wall using tape, or able to stand on its own on the ground). Posters of a larger format will be docked points.