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College of Science and Engineering

Summer Research Posters

Summer Research Poster Instructions

  • Posters are a visual medium to engage an observer with a research project and are usually presented at conferences and professional meetings. Scientists like poster presentations because they can engage personally with interested observers who are experts in the field of research. Creating a poster is a valuable skill for your future and can be used in any direction you choose to go into.

Tips for Making a Poster

  • Posters should contain lots of figures, diagrams, and graphics and as little text as possible. You have less than 5 minutes to engage the observer and visuals play a key role versus text.
  • When using text use bulleted lists to convey information.
  • Figure legends, or labels are usually below a graphic, so they are clearly identifiable. Always give credit to the source of graphics or pictures borrowed from literature or the internet.
  • Keep in mind that posters should be readable from a distance of about 5 feet away.

Required Elements of a Poster

A Horizontal Poster Template is here in the format of 24 x36 with three columns. The elements to include are as follows:

  • Title, Student Name(s), Faculty Mentor Name, Department, Seattle University
  • Abstract
    • Introduction (Context of the problem, statement of the problem, and hypothesis)
    • Background/Theory (The general methods applied to study the problem and previous relevant results)
    • Methods/Experimental Design (The specific approach applied to this problem)
    • Results
    • Conclusions
    • References
    • Acknowledgements (Include your Mentor and the Funding Source)
  • View your poster at 100% on the computer monitor before printing to make sure your figures are not grainy or blurred. 

Where to Print a Poster

The Chemistry Department has a poster printer they have kindly allowed to be used. To gain access to the Chemistry Department printer, please contact one of the following:

Reprographics: If you choose to use Reprographics to print a poster, the Summer Undergraduate Research Program will not do reimbursements and you will need to identify alternative funding. 

Presenting a Poster

  • Greet the observer and ask if they would like a brief introduction to the topic.
  • Give a 2 minute speech about your topic and after ask if the observer has any questions.
  • Allow for a brief discussion if questions are asked. This is an opportunity to hear a new perspective from the observer or a shared experience or a relevant reference from the literature.
  • In some cases, business cards are exchanged and either the presenter or observer writes on the back of the card something they plan to convey to the other via email. 
  • Enjoy the experience and have fun!

Bonus Help - Rubric Example

Below is a rubric that is used to grade posters in the Chemistry Department.  Please use it as a tool to look over your poster elements and to do a practice presentation with your mentor and/or a group of student colleagues, or a science student friend. By doing practice presentations, it will provide a great opportunity to receive feedback before you present at the poster session.

Undergraduate Research Poster Presentation  

12 points total:   Score __/12

CATEGORY

4

3

2

1

Graphics – Integration with topic

There are 5-6 images, graphs or structures -- all easily viewed and well labeled. Several of the graphics used on the poster reflect exceptional integration of the figure to help explain the research.

3-4 images or graphs easily viewed and well labeled. One of the graphics used on the poster reflect a good integration of the figure to help explain the research.

2 images, or images are not clear or not well labeled (eg titles and/or units missing).

The graphics/figures do not really help explain the research.

No graphics included. Or graphics have major mistakes and/or units missing or incorrect.

Graphics - Relevance

All graphics are related to the research and make it easier to understand. All borrowed graphics have a source citation.

All graphics are related to the research and most make it easier to understand. All borrowed graphics have a source citation.

All graphics relate to the research. Most borrowed graphics have a source citation.

Graphics do not relate to the research OR several borrowed graphics do not have a source citation.

Required Elements

Content – Accuracy

Grammar and Layout

The poster includes all required elements as well as additional information.

Accurate facts are displayed on the poster.

There are no grammatical mistakes on the poster.

The viewer easily understands the project.

All required elements are included on the poster.

Most of the facts displayed on the poster are accurate.

There is 1 grammatical mistake on the poster.    The layout of the poster is good.

All but 1 of the required elements are included on the poster. There is a minor inaccuracy of facts displayed on the poster.

There are 2 grammatical mistakes on the poster.   The layout of the poster is adequate.

Several required elements were missing.

There is a major inaccuracy of facts displayed on the poster.   

There are more than 2 grammatical mistakes on the poster.    The layout of the poster requires improvement.