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Download Scientific Poster Plan as PDF

Scientists present their work at seminars or conferences. Unfortunately, not everyone can speak at a conference so many scientists present their work on posters which are exhibited during the conference.

It is very important that these posters catch the eye and hold the attention of the other conference participants.

Guidelines for producing a poster

Size This will be determined by the exhibition area but the optimum size will be about 100cm x 70cm.


  • Choose a background support which provides a good contrast to your work.
  • For the text you do not have to use white paper.
  • Leave enough room to provide a space around your diagrams, blocks of text etc, it attracts people's attention.
  • Mount the documents on the poster using double-sided tape or photograph attachments. Set it out on the ground first to see how you want to arrange the different parts.

The Title

  • Use a very large font at least 1,5cm tall.
  • The title should be carefully chosen to attract an audience, so know your audience well.
  • State what the poster shows using key words.

The Team Indicate the members of your team - the standard convention is to put them in alphabetical order.

The Contents of the Poster

Text Type it on a word processor, using a large font (at least 14 or 16 points).

Introduction Be brief, be concise.

Aims and Conclusions Summarise them as 3 to 5 point sentences.


  • Use full sheets (30cm x 20cm) for each graph/diagram.
  • Remember you can use vertical ("portrait") or horizontal ("paysage") formats.
  • Tables of results are not easy to read and interpret. Use a spread sheet programme (e.g. EXCEL) to produce histograms, bar charts, graphs, pie charts etc.
  • The data should follow a logical progression across the poster. Use numbers or arrows to guide the reader.
  • Give each piece of data a concise title and a block of text.
  • Think about using photographs. They add colour and they will create a great visual impact.


  • Establish a rota system for the members of the team to present the poster and to talk about your work. It is a good idea to rehearse beforehand.
  • This will also provide an opportunity to present objects, equipment or materials which cannot be stuck on the poster.
  • You may even stick a picture of your group on the poster. This way you will be recognised amongst the crowd.


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© Paul Billiet 2016