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Gary Bortolotti, Biology Faculty

Poster Advice

Do you have any advice for compiling a poster presentation?

People say, "Ahh, don't put too much!" Well, how much is too much? In part it depends on what you're trying to communicate, but I think a poster is a good exercise because you have to synthesize a lot of your material. I find that for an awful lot of a poster just bullets [or] point form are excellent, you know, "Methods: Aix this with that, And you do this chemical analysis, [and] answer," you know. I think that's the kind of thing that is important. It's important to make sure that you're not redundant with information. If it's explained in the figure, don't go on and on and say...explain the figure, just have the figure, things like that. And being concise, so that you have just a few sentences, and then try it out on people, you know, and see what they think. And if they say, "I'm not going to read all this," or, you know, then [you had] better cut some out. I think it's distracting, or [that] people will spend so much time on the visual component that the text suffers. I don't know if it's that important. I think there's a way of making it visually...what is visually appealing is things like simplicity rather than having it cluttered. Whether or not you have a background of a bird or just white or light blue or something is... people spend too much time on that I think.