Poster Presentation Assignment

Poster Presentation Guidelines

Posters will be presented during the final lab period.

You may choose any topic that is relevant to biology; it does not have to be in an area that we cover in class. You may expand on a topic that was discussed during media discussions or for your Global Health talk, but there must be some additional information.

Posters should approximately 2’ by 3’. Please no giant posters—there’s no room to hang them up! And no tiny posters (don’t print out an 8.5X11 sheet and call it a poster).


Title: 1-2 lines   Your name

Introduction: Get your viewer interested about the issue or question while using the absolute minimum of background information and definitions. [Maximum length: approximately 200 words.]

Figures: Include a figure legend for any figures that are not obvious or self-explanatory

Conclusions: State the conclusions drawn from your research. This may be in paragraph or bullet format.

References: List all references and sources used for research for the poster.   There should be at least 5 different sources—this is not a poster version of a wikipedia site!

Balance – The figures and tables should cover slightly more than 50% of the poster area. If you have only a few illustrations, make them large. Do not omit the text, but keep it brief. The poster should be understandable without oral explanation.

Avoid abbreviations, acronyms, and jargon. Use a consistent font throughout.

Eye Movement – The movement (pathway) of the eye over the poster should be natural, down the columns or along the rows. Size attracts attention. Arrows, pointing hands, numbers, and letters can help clarify the sequence.

Simplicity – Resist the temptation to overload the poster. More material may mean less communication.

Plan ahead. Because many of your classmates will be making posters, and because many assignments are done at the last minute, there is likely to be a printer queue on the morning that posters are due. In the past, some students have not been able to print out their poster in time! Don’t let this happen to you.

How the poster session will be run:
This depends, to some extent, on the number of posters. In the past, typically around 75% of the students in the class make posters.

All posters will be hung at the start of the lab period. Half of the class will stand by their posters and explain their research to the other students. Once Sadie or I have had a chance to talk with all poster presenters in the first half, we’ll switch, and the other half of the students will stand by their posters. Either Sadie or I will speak with all presenters. We expect a reasonable depth of knowledge that goes beyond simply reading what’s on your poster.

Posters are optional. You may earn up to 10 points added to your midterm grade for your poster. Posters will be graded based on three criteria: presentation/appearance, content and knowledge of the presenter.

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