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Answered By: Kristie Keuntjes
Last Updated: Aug 29, 2018     Views: 20

What is a poster?

A poster is a way to present practice changes, innovations, and/or research in a large-format story board.

What should I include on my poster?


  • Title
  • Authors and their institutional affiliations

Introduction:  This should clearly identify why the poster was needed of why the study was conducted

  • Purpose
  • Rationale
  • Hypothesis/research question

Methodology:  This section should summarize the characteristics of the research.  If you are presenting about a new idea or theory, include here where and how the literature review was done.

  • Sample size, gender, age range, ethnic/racial characteristics
  • Data collection procedures/instruments
  • Define variables 
  • Measurement
  • Procedure/data collection tools

Results:  This section is to present data analysis.  

  • Most interesting findings including ideas for application of theories or results
  • Brief statement on similarities to other research 
  • Importance of results

Limitations/Implications:  This section is where you share the known limitations of the study and the implications for practice and future research.

  • Share anything that may need to be done before these findings work in practice or limitation to application to practice
  • How can others use this information


  • Including recognition for funding sources
  • Conflicts of interest 
  • Any persons who may have assisted with the project

Contact Information:  This section shares how the reader may contact you to obtain more information.

  • Name
  • Telephone number
  • Email address

How do I make my poster?

Typically, posters are created using a single PowerPoint slide and planning for dimensions of 36" x 48" or 48" x 56" for the display depending on the presentation guidelines.

Your heading should be in the center top of your poster, and you should use a logical structure for the remaining pieces to guide the reader through your poster.  Usually, the remainder of the poster is divided into columns.

We have an Answer to help you as you start working on your poster:

You can also perform a quick YouTube search to find tons of how-to videos on how to create a poster in PowerPoint.  Try searching "academic posters in powerpoint" to get some great results.

What should I keep in mind while designing my poster?

  • Present the information in a simple, understandable way
  • Consider the audience and ensure the message of the poster is clearly stated
  • Limit the amount of information on the poster
  • On average, you have 11 seconds to grab and retain the audience's attention
  • Your font should be legible from four feet away and should not become distorted when printed in a large format
  • Avoid use of multiple fonts
  • Color is encouraged, but limit the number of colors to create an overall theme
  • Photos should be relevant to the poster's purpose and should be obtained from the public domain to avoid copyright issues 
  • Use bullet points to promote readability