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Poster Presentations Chapter 28 Popularity of Posters More common today, especially at national and international meetings Largely due to increased attendance at conferences Previously, program committees rejected abstracts Some conferences have more than 1,000 poster presenters

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Popularity of Posters

  • More common today, especially at national and international meetings

    • Largely due to increased attendance at conferences

    • Previously, program committees rejected abstracts

    • Some conferences have more than 1,000 poster presenters

  • Most are by graduate students and post-docs

  • Posters are interactive


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Organization

  • IMRAD or IRDAM

  • Follow instructions provided by conference organizers

  • Posters are usually landscape (e.g., 4 ft wide, 3 ft tall)

  • Poster Sessions are usually partitioned by topic

  • Usually, a session is about 2 hours


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Organization

  • Less text than a manuscript

  • More illustrations, tables and figures

    • The results section is often only graphics

  • Bullets often use to make concluding points in discussion section


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Preparing the Poster

  • Title - large font spanning the width of the poster

    • Should include author names and contact information

  • Abstract - usually already done because it needed to be submitted before the meeting

  • Use 1.5x or 2x spacing

  • Use 18-22 point font for text

  • Use columns


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Preparing the Poster

  • Must be legible from about 10 feet away

  • Use black for fonts

    • Can use other dark colors for points of emphasis

  • Avoid distracting backgrounds and other clutter

  • It should be self-explanatory

  • Use colors!

  • Proofread, proofread, PROOFREAD!

  • Bring pins


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Transporting Posters

  • Air travel today can present problems for transport

  • Tubes are usually used to transport posters printed on large sheets (e.g., 4 ft x 3 ft) and can be cumbersome to carry on airplanes

  • Alternatively, posters can be printed on smaller sheets and packed in checked luggage

    • 13” x 19” sheets are convenient for such posters

    • 8.5” x 11” sheets are less useful


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Transporting Posters

  • Risks of packing your poster with checked luggage

    • Luggage may get lost

    • May get wet

      • Wrap poster in plastic trash bag

    • May get damaged

  • Always have a backup PDF copy of your poster on electronic medium (e.g., CD, flash drive, etc.)

  • If possible, have PDF posted on an ftp server or web page


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Presenting the Poster

  • Abstract books are usually posted online before the meeting

  • Attendees often read the abstract book in advance and look for posters of interest

  • This maximizes efficiency for viewing many posters

  • Those who visit your poster likely have a genuine interest in what you are doing


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Presenting the Poster

  • Presenting

    • Have your poster up before the session start time

    • Be at your poster during the entire session

    • Be proactive when someone stops at your poster

      • You never know who might stop by


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Presenting the Poster

  • Engage in dialog

    • Posters are interactive, sometimes with more than two people

    • Explain your work clearly and why it’s important

      • You are selling your work

    • Listen to their questions and solicit comments

    • Look them in the eyes

    • Thank them for stopping by, especially if they provided constructive feedback


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The miniposter

  • Bring 25 or so copies of your poster printed on letter or legal size paper

  • Use both sides of the paper

  • Leave them at your poster for viewers to take

  • Make sure your contact info (email address) is on the poster


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Oral Presentations

  • Chapter 27


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Selection

  • Oral presentations are more selective than poster presentations

  • Program committees select abstracts for the oral session because time is more constrained

  • Sometimes you will request an oral presentation but given a poster presentation


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Organization

  • IMRAD is usually the best

  • State the problem you are addressing

    • Provide sufficient background for your audience

    • Not all audiences are equal!

  • Explain how you went about the problem


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Organization

  • Show results in concise slides

    • Keep in mind that oral presentations are not interactive

    • Keep your data simple

    • Graphs are almost always better than tables (data reduction)

    • Use colors as much as possible

      • Symbols are also important because some people, particularly men, are color blind


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Organization

  • Discussion

    • Bullet main points

    • Complete sentences are not necessary

      • Keep statements as short as possible

      • It is better to make three bullets than one long statement of three conclusions

  • Questions

    • Answer as best you can

    • Be courteous and responsive

    • Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know”


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Presentation

  • Time limits

    • Rule of thumb: 1 minute per slide

  • Do not exceed your time limit

    • Unprofessional

    • Rude

  • Avoid temptation to include too much information

    • Oral presentations should convey one or two broad points


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Presentation

  • Stage fright

    • Some people have trouble giving talks

    • The only solution is to give talks

      • Start with small groups of friends or peers

      • Move to larger groups

      • Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse!

  • Delivery - Avoid distracting mannerisms

    • “um...”; “you know”; etc., etc., etc.

    • Unnecessary tangents


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Slides

  • Use appropriate font sizes

    • Varies with room size

  • Use appropriate colors for slides

    • Light fonts with dark backgrounds

    • Dark fonts with light backgrounds

  • Templates - can be good or bad

  • Do not crowd the slides with too much information

  • Do not read from the slide; look at your audience


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