Posters are an exciting way to disseminate research because their format facilitates comfortable interactions between presenters and conference delegates. The information included in this document will assist you in preparing your poster for the upcoming SASP-SPSSI Group Meeting on intergroup contact. Additional information will be provided closer to the time.
This page provides you with (1) the specific formatting guidelines and expectations of your poster, (2) general advice to assist you in preparing an engaging and thorough poster presentation, (3) information about a competition for best poster award you are invited to enter into. This award is entered into voluntarily and anonymously.
Dedicated Poster Sessions: Poster Display plus Short Oral Presentations
The SASP-SPSSI Group Meeting on intergroup contact aims to provide poster presenters the best possible opportunity to disseminate their work. To this end, poster presenters are invited to prepare and display a poster about their work and, in addition, deliver a 3-minute speech about their research as part of their poster session.
Each poster presenter will be assigned to a poster session to showcase their work. This dedicated poster session will consist, first, of delegates moving as a group between poster presenters and displays to hear the formal, 3-minute presentations from all the poster presenters in that session. The remainder of the session will serve as an opportunity for delegates to revisit posters and poster presenters for informal conversations and questions regarding the work presented.
During this designated poster session, it is an expectation that you will stand by your poster. To allow for maximum exposure of your work. You are also welcome to display your poster before and after your dedicated presentation period. You will receive further information about how you can do this closer to the time.
(1) Preparing Your Poster
Poster size. The poster dimension limit is size A0, which is 120 cm x 84 cm (in either orientation). The poster can be a series of smaller pages of A4 or A3 size, although this approach often does not look very professional.
Layout. Most posters use 3-5 columns, include only key information, and can include dot points. A large heading spanning the whole poster block is typical, incorporating the poster title, authors and affiliations (often including institutional crests or logos and presenting author’s email). Key findings are typically communicated using graphs, diagrams, or images. Avoid block left and right margins, which are difficult to follow, and instead use ragged-right margins. White space is okay, since overly dense posters exhaust the reader and the key points are more easily missed.
Element Sizes. Use larger fonts wherever possible. The exact size of elements will vary depending upon the size of the poster and the complexity of the research presented. However, example guidelines include; 85pt for the title, 56pt for authors and affiliations, 36pt for subheadings, 24pt for body text. Diagrams, graphs, and images should be of a reasonable size (typically 13 by 18 cm) at a resolution of about 180 dpi.
Handouts. A4 size handouts can be distributed as part of poster sessions (but are not essential) to supplement the poster materials. They are often used to provide contact details if the reader has further queries, provide reference lists, complex statistical details, or large tables—or just something for delegates to bag for future reference. They can be as simply as A4 print outs of the exact poster. You may find it useful to bring a plastic sleeve that contains your handouts that can be pinned to the board next to your poster. This will allow interested delegates to obtain your handout if you are not standing by your poster.
Poster Set Up. Please proceed to the registration desk the day you are due to present your poster. Pins, Velcro, Bluetack, and cellotape will be available at the registration desk to assist you in setting up your poster.
Poster Resources. To assist with your poster preparation, please check the links below to freely available resources found online. These resources are not an exhaustive list of what is available online, thus, you may find other resources similarly beneficial.
(2) Preparing Your Presentation
Formal Presentation. During your poster session, you are expected to deliver a 3-minute speech once in front of the conference delegates as they move around the posters in a group. This 3-minute presentation will detail some key aspects of your research (e.g., key research question-s and their relevance, basic aspects of method/paradigm, one or two results highlights, importance of your findings). You will not have time to describe your method and results in technical detail and in an exhaustive manner; rather, you should be able to identify essential information relevant to your research question that can be conveyed in an interesting manner to a specialised audience with varied levels of expertise and interests and in a very short time format.
Recommendations for an Engaging Presentation. The specific contents of your formal presentation will vary depending upon your research topic, your methodology, and the progress of your work (e.g., some posters might be theoretical papers only). However, these general tips might assist you in preparing for your presentation.
- Outline the issue your research is addressing and the aim of your research. The 3-minute presentation should be orientated toward describing how the work presented addresses this issue and achieves your aim.
- Explain/define your key concepts and terminology to the audience. All of the delegates will have some expertise or interest in intergroup contact but they may not be familiar with your theory or concepts.
- Avoid technical jargon and long sentences. However, be careful not to devalue or ‘dumb down’ your research.
- Remember that your research is of interest to the conference delegates (that was why it was accepted!) so please present it with eagerness.
- Successful presentations will be well-rehearsed presentations. If you are a nervous public speaker, take the time to perform the speech out-loud to yourself or a colleague.
- Presenters should consider using components of the poster (e.g., graphs, diagrams, pictures) to clearly convey more complex ideas or findings. Therefore, when you design your poster you should consider how to include components that allow you to clearly articulate your key message during the talk and for informal viewers.
(3) Entering the Best Poster Award Competition
All poster presenters will have the opportunity to enter the 2019 SASP-SPSSI Group Meeting Conference Best Poster Award. The winner will be determined by one senior and one junior conference delegate asked to act as assessors. By entering this competition, you are given the opportunity to receive positive appraisals for your research and potentially build your curriculum vitae.
The winner will have demonstrated to have a poster with a clear design, to be carrying out quality research, and achieve high audience engagement with their poster and 3-minute talk. Full marking criteria for the competition evaluation are provided below:
- Poster clarity and design
- Aesthetically pleasing poster
- Poster design is both logical and concise
- Uses sufficient font size and image size
- Complete and self-contained: All components (e.g., graphs etc.) are explained, referred to in-text, and have legends, if necessary
- Quality and rigour of the research, and its design
- Research problem clearly and succinctly stated
- Proposes and tests ideas and offers a potential solution to the problem
- Appropriate depth and breadth of research into topic
- Draws plausible conclusions
- Audience engagement
- Clarity and coherence of the formal oral presentation
- Good integration between oral presentation and poster display
- Ability to answer questions
- Evidence of ability to interact with and engage the audience
This award competition is entered into voluntarily. Invitations to enter the best poster award competition will be sent via email to all poster presenters.
To enter the competition, please reply to that email with an indication that you would like to be considered for the award by the 31st of March using the subject line ‘Poster Award Entry’. If you have not received an invitation to enter this competition and believe you should have, please contact the members of the local organizing committee responsible for the poster sessions (contact details are available on the ‘Organising Committees and Contacts’ tab of this website).
The assessment for the competition will occur on the day of your designated poster session. We will do our best to ensure that the assessment process will be managed in ways to protect the identity of the competitors and assessors. The names of those who chose to enter (vs. not) the competition will be disclosed exclusively to the conference organising committee and the award’s assessors. This means that the audience will not know who is competing and who is not. The winner of the award will be announced to the conference delegates before the end of the conference.