Designing and Presenting a Poster

Poster Sessions

A poster session is a great time to share your research and to get feedback! Poster sessions vary in how long they are with MPA Main Posters lasting for 1 hour and 50 minutes and Psi Chi sessions lasting for about 45 minutes. You should plan on being at your poster throughout this time. Arrive 5 to 7 minutes before your session. Pushpins will be available to you to hang your poster. Consider having a handout of your poster that includes your e-mail address – this way attendees can continue to think about your work and possibly contact you later.

Your poster will have a number next to it in the program (on both the mobile app and paper program). That is the number for the board where you’ll hang your poster. Find that board and that’s where your poster goes!

Poster Size and Material

The poster boards will be 48 in. high by 96 in wide (4 x 8 ft.). Your poster does not need to a specific format or size. However, many presenters will print their posters using a large format printer using either their university’s printer or a retailer (e.g., FedEx, Staples). A good poster size is generally 36 to 42 inches tall by 48 to 60 inches wide.

Posters are generally printed on a glossy paper and rolled up in a tube to transport to the conference. There are also new services featuring printing on fabric that can be folded. Keep in mind though, paper is the less expensive option. It is not uncommon for people to come with individual 8×11 pages printed as well, so don’t worry if you don’t have access to a poster printer or if the costs associated with printing one are too high.

Poster Design

Here is a video that will walk you through the basics of creating a poster.

This video will explain how to present your poster.

Here are some recommended websites to help with planning and putting together your poster.

FREE Poster Templates

Researchers typically use PowerPoint to create their posters as it is the best way to import text from Word, graphs from data analysis programs, and to include images. Your department or university may have poster templates for you to use. If not, below are links to free PowerPoint templates that you can download and work with.