Pedwell, R. K., Hardy, J. A., & Rowland, S. L. (2017). Effective visual design and communication practices for research posters: Exemplars based on the theory and practice of multimedia learning and rhetoric. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, 45(3), 249-261.
Tomita, K. (2017). Visual Design Tips to Develop an Inviting Poster for Poster Presentations. TechTrends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning, 61(4), 313–315
Ways to Make Posters Better
Aim to tell a compelling story about why your research is important in a real-world context.
Remember that a poster is an interactive & visual medium, not a research paper. You will present alongside your poster, and the text serves as a compliment to your conversations with audience members. Design your content with that purpose in mind.
Write to your specific audience (language/detail will differ if you're presenting to other researchers in your discipline vs. a broad general audience)
Language & text:
Be concise with your words: focus text on the main points and big takeaways of your research. Bulleted or numbered lists help.
Use text size, style, and colors strategically to emphasize your message
Make a compelling title readable from 8+ feet away (to draw in an audience). Make the rest of the text readable from 3-5 feet away.
Use a template as a starting point (example links in right-hand column).
Leave blank/white space to enhance visual appeal and readability.
Provide a link, QR code, or handouts for audience members that would like more information.
Get feedback on your design & practice with an audience.
This video is the second iteration of what kickstarted the #BetterPoster design trend. A great way to understand the common shortcoming of traditional poster design and get ideas for simplifying and maximizing your message.
Landscape and portrait PowerPoint templates that offer another take on the "better poster" initiative. The "butter poster" offers a creative design but more content that adheres more closely to a traditional poster.