It is very common that learners of different educational levels need to create science posters to present the results of their research. The posters are displayed at conferences and symposia so that other participants can see what is being researched and request more information if they are interested in the project. A science poster should look professional and contain the same elements as an article, but in condensed form.
Part 1 of 2: Produce Good Content
Step 1. Create a short title
Scientific articles can have very long titles. Reduce the title of your poster to reflect the content of the research and the methodology used, but make sure it does not occupy more than two lines at the top.
Create a catchy title that catches the attention of passers-by. However, don't try to make it funny
Step 2. Write an introduction
Place the research in the context of your previous work and explain its importance. Then present an interesting hypothesis.
- Be careful not to make an identical introduction to the summary.
- The introduction should be no more than 200 words long so that it can be read quickly. You can also include a photo or other visual aid to make it more attractive and interesting.
- Avoid filling the introduction with explanations of concepts, background information, and other items that can make it boring and uninteresting to passers-by.
Step 3. Describe your experimental method
Briefly explain your methodology. Use no more than 200 words. Include a few illustrations if you think they can help you. For example, flowcharts can be a great resource for this section.
- Do not include a summary. Ideally, your poster should present a visual summary of your research rather than a copy of your written summary.
- Learn more about your audience. As with writing an article, make sure that the information on the poster gives a good overview of the information provided. Remember that it should be understandable even to readers of other fields of knowledge.
Step 4. Present the results
Keep it in two short paragraphs and include a well-labeled table so that passers-by can understand your search results at a glance. Graphics should be clear, succinct and well labeled so that they are understandable to everyone. Most people who stop to read your poster will skip other sections and read your results straight away. Pay special attention to this part.
- In the first paragraph, say whether the experiment worked or not.
- In the second paragraph, analyze the results according to the hypothesis and specify how many times you repeated the experiment.
- Include relevant numbers from your study.
Step 5. Discuss your findings
In about 200 words, explain to the reader why your research was important and relevant to both your field of study and the real world. Discuss where you want the research to go in the future.
- Repeat the results and, once more, say whether your hypothesis was confirmed or not.
- Try to convince the reader that the results are conclusive and interesting.
Step 6. List any previous research you have used
Cite all the articles you read to support your hypothesis and all the research that was mentioned in the study. Use the correct format recommended for researchers in your field to cite sources.
Step 7. Thank the people who have helped and supported you
Do not list the titles of the people who supported you, but rather the nature of the help or support they provided.
If there are actual or potential conflicts of interest or commitments regarding your research, explain them in this section
Step 8. Enter your details
Include your name, email address, site (if you have one), and an address where readers can download a copy of the poster.
It might be good to make a poached version of the poster with all the information so that others can review your study and easily hear from you later
Part 2 of 2: Make a good presentation
Step 1. Determine the size of the poster
To determine the size you need, consider the volume of information, as well as the number of images or graphics you plan to include. If the report has fewer than five pages and fewer than seven images or graphics, a 90cm x 120cm poster should suffice. Adjust the size if the report contains more information.
- Find out about the size required for your event. There may be some limitations on presentation space or poster size.
- Make sure you have enough materials to display your poster. Usually you can be provided with displays or staples on site, but it is best to check this information in advance to make sure you bring everything you need.
Step 2. Carefully choose what to put on the poster
Many students try to include everything on the poster, but this is a big mistake. For example, the summary should not be included. Also, keep in mind that large blocks of text can seem cumbersome, boring, and intimidating to the reader. Posters with a lot of text are often ignored in favor of those that are easier to read.
- Highlight important details and discuss unnecessary details with the audience.
- Organize the information into columns and structure your presentation logically.
- Clearly identify all sections, images and graphics.
Step 3. Use software to create slides and manipulate images
This will help you make your poster. If you know how to use programs like PowerPoint and Keynote or design software like Photoshop, create a very professional poster with visuals that combine text and graphics.
- After you've created all of the sections and illustrations, convert them to Portable Document Format (PDF) files so you won't be surprised how they look when printed.
- Use a platform that works on both your PC and Mac to avoid compatibility issues if you need to copy the file from one operating system to another.
Step 4. Take a look at the poster 2 meters away
Examine graphs, tables, and illustrations to make sure readers can identify details from a distance. Move away a little more. The poster title should be legible up to 3m away.
- Write all the text in large print. The text of the paragraphs should be composed of a typeface of 18 to 24 point. Use a different font style for the headings to distinguish them, but keep the same font with the rest of the information.
- Use colors to grab the attention of passers-by. Using two or three colors can make your headlines much more attractive. However, be careful not to overdo it. Otherwise, the poster may become overwhelming.
- Avoid 3D illustrations unless they are strictly necessary. If you must use them, print a stereoscopic version of the image and provide 3D glasses to readers.
- Don't use low-quality images. Try to find files that look good after being enlarged to fit on the poster. Maybe you need to take your own digital photos.
Step 5. Add audio and video files if needed
There are several ways to do this: you can buy a device similar to the one found inside sound greeting cards or attach a media player to your poster.
Insert a quick response code (QR code) into the poster to redirect readers with smartphones and other such devices to a website with photos, audio files, and other media
Step 6. Make a rough sketch
Arrange your information in an easy-to-follow sequential order. Analyze the organization of the data and see if the poster is attractive enough.
Ask students and teachers for their feedback before putting together the final version
Step 7. Keep the poster in a safe place
Ideally, you should purchase a cardboard tube to protect the poster until the time of presentation. Take care not to spoil the fruits of your hard work.
If you don't want to buy a tube, try rolling up the poster and securing each end with a rubber band to keep it closed until the presentation
Step 8. Consider contacting a professional printing service
Find the nearest print shop or search online for specialist scientific poster printers.
- If the science event is in another city, you can send your poster to a printer so they can do it before you arrive. Conference organizers usually make arrangements with certain printers to print and deliver participants' posters.
- See if there is a registration process to print posters at your university's print shop. During times of crisis, students may go there in large numbers to print their work.
Step 9. Create a "back in 5 minutes" sign to hang
At some events, the presenter should always be present to answer questions from other participants or provide additional information. It might be a good idea to have such a sign handy in case you need to go out for a drink of water or use the bathroom. This reduces the chances that interested visitors will notice your absence.
Step 10. Have any important reference material ready
Even the best posters don't contain all the relevant information. Be prepared to answer questions with all the information you have. Bring cards that you can consult quickly. You can also get a binder to keep any other document you may need.