Poster Presentation Guidelines and Information

  • The maximum poster-board surface area is 4’x3’. Your poster will be placed on a tripod provided on the day of the symposium. The board can be oriented either horizontally (4’ wide x 3’ tall) or vertically (3’ wide x 4’tall) on the tripod.  So, if PowerPoint is used to create the poster, the “page set-up” can be in landscape mode (48”x36’’) or in portrait mode (36”x48”).
  • Two-sided tape for mounting of the poster on the poster board will be provided.
  • Limited number of tables (upon request from the symposium coordinator) are available for presenters that like to use additional materials such a laptop, samples, lab notebooks, handouts, etc. during the poster presentation.
  • A poster must be related to the research materials covered in the submitted abstract.
  • The presenters are encouraged to submit a PDF version of their posters for publication on the VSU symposium website a few days after the symposium (deadline posted on the Call for Proposals). Therefore, it is recommended that the posters are prepared digitally using a computer program (e.g., PowerPoint or Publisher).
  • Posters can be printed at the VSU Media Services located at Odum Library. The Undergraduate Research Council will cover the cost of the printing done at Media Services.  Note that it will be fine if Media services prints your poster smaller than the dimensions of the poster board (e.g., smaller than 48”x36”).
  • Posters will be judged and monetary awards are given to the best posters in various fields.

For additional information about the poster presentations at the VSU Undergraduate Research Symposium please contact Dr. Lovanna Lovern at

Previous poster presetations can be viewed in the link below.

2018 Posters

Poster Design Tips

The following tips/suggestions have been prepared to help improve the effectiveness of poster communication:

  • You have complete freedom in displaying your research materials in various forms of text, figures, charts, schematics, and photographs.  However, the text/graphs must be readable/visible from 6 feet (2 meters) away.
  • The poster should provide enough materials to explain the research without an oral presentation. The materials should stimulate discussion and initiate questions.
  • Poster sections should include an abstract, methodology, results, discussion, and conclusions. If appropriate, an introduction section can be placed after the abstract.
  • In general, posters are read from left to right and from top to bottom.
  • Make an initial rough layout, keeping in mind proportions of figures, tables and text. Text should cover less than 40% of the poster area.
  • You can use different font sizes and colors to draw attention. For example, one can use the font types of “Helvetica” for headers and “Times” of the main text of the poster.
  • Use high resolution photographs.
  • Avoid overwhelming viewers with too much information.
  • Be clear and concise in all statements. 

Print your poster at least two days before the symposium.

The following is an example of an acceptable poster layout:

(For additional info about each section, please read the notes at the bottom of the poster)

poster guidelines layout


  1. Title should be in an easy to read font, such as Verdana, font size should be 80, bold type, written in all upper case.
  2. Instead of the VSU Logo, a picture of the author(s) can be placed here.
  3. The abstract should be the same abstract that you submitted in your proposal and is in the Symposium Program.
  4. You are not limited to the section headings shown on this template and can use other section titles that are appropriate for your research.  Change section subheadings as appropriate for your research.
  5. You can use as many high resolution pictures, tables, or graphs that you like and can place them anywhere on your poster with an appropriate margin.  However, the font size used on the graphs, pictures or tables should be at least 28, so that all words and numbers are still readable after the poster is printed on an 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper. Figures and tables should have numbers and legends. 
  6. You can use any background color that you like for your poster.  It is suggested that you use simple background to avoid distraction. Dark colors on white background or bright colors on white background make it easier to read your poster.

PDF Printout