Poster Presentation Instructions | St. Lawrence University Community Based Learning

Poster Presentation Instructions

Poster Design Guidelines

The following guidelines are for printing posters for the Festival of SLU in the Community. If you have specific questions not answered here, students may call Office Services and speak with either Renata Sheehan or Megan Gardner.  The phone number is x 5891. Email: officeservices@stlawu.edu

Review the Poster Design Guidelines

Getting Started

  1. Choose a program to create your poster. Many students use Microsoft PowerPoint. Although, other programs such as Adobe Illustrator or InDesign may be used.
  2. Set the height and width to 36" x 48".  
  3. Choose landscape orientation.
  4. Add content to your poster.  Keep your color scheme and layout as simple as possible.  Avoid complex backgrounds that interfere with legibility. Dark colored backgrounds will use more ink resulting in paper that is wrinkled.  Please be aware, the printed color does not always match the screen color.
  5. Use the PLACE or INSERT command to add an image or graphic to your poster.  Avoid using Copy & Paste.
  6. Use fonts that are legible at a distance.  Use ZOOM at the 100% option to see what the actual printed page will look like.

Text-size

  1. The main title should be at least 100 points (4cm high). 
  2. Subheadings should be approximately 50 points (Between 1.5–2cm high).

Body text

  1. Text is most easily read when it is 25 points (Between 0.5–1 cm high). The absolute minimum for text is 18 points.
  2. The title of your poster should appear at the top in large letters.
  3. Include your name on your poster.
  4. People will not read a lot of text, and certainly won't read standard journal-sized text.
  5. Printed text should be very brief, or most people will walk away.
  6. Studies show that text written in all capital letters is hard to follow; it is better to use bold print than all caps.
  7. Bullets may be helpful in summarizing information.
  8. Divide the contents of your poster into appropriate sections.

Things to Remember

  1. Carefully and completely prepare your poster and submit it. It may take up to four business days to print your poster.
  2. The flow of your poster should be from the top left to the bottom right.
  3. You may wish to use color for highlighting and to make your poster more attractive.
  4. Use pictures, diagrams, cartoons, figures, etc., rather than text wherever possible.
  5. References - Concentrate on key references only. This is not meant to be an exhaustive listing. You can expand on your sources during discussions with viewers attending the poster session.
  6. Pay attention to grammar and syntax.
  7. Do take time to make the poster visually pleasing and professional.
  8. Don't wait until the last minute to assemble your poster; things always go wrong!
  9. Photos print well if they have not been resized more than 1.5 times their original size. Anything beyond that will result in a blocky, pixilated reproduction.
  10. If you are using imported fonts, it is your responsibility to embed them in the document or make them available at the time of printing.  Check the software's help on how to do this.  

Sending to the Printer

  1. Do you have the community partner's approval, and have you submitted the form to the CBL office?
  2. Proof your poster thoroughly before submitting. Posters that need to be re-printed due to an author error will  result in an additional cost, billed to the student's account.
  3. Your Name: please include (somewhere) on your poster and as part of the file name.
  4. ODY Printing: Save a copy to T:\ODY\Print Jobs. Never save the original file. Instead, save a copy. This folder is emptied routinely, and they are not responsible for lost or damaged files saved in the Print Jobs folder.
  5. Fill out the form Print Request (ODY). When you get to the " Create Print Request" page, please follow the instructions to fill out the form.
  6. Apple Users: Before submitting your poster, open up your file on a PC to make sure your text and images are formatted correctly. Let Tom Dildine at ODY know if your file was created using a Mac.
  7. Most files will print out just fine; however, if a problem arises, Tom will try to determine the source of the problem and contact you for any needed information

*This information was adapted from Poster Design Guidelines (ODY).