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Tips for Creating a Poster

Here are some general tips to help you get started when desigining a poster (also watch the Poster Design Workshop Video for some other great tips).

Making a Poster


First Impressions:

  • Your poster is an important exhibition of your research. It should:
    • Summarize your research
    • Be visually appealing
    • Emanate clarity and organization
  • People need to be able to read it:
    • Title should be readable from 10 feet
    • Text should be readable from 4 feet
  • It should concisely display your thesis:
    • Be succinct and consistent
Cosider Organization:
  • What visually represents your thesis?
    • Pictures, colours, visual aids
    • Graphs, tables, timelines
  • How does your logic flow?
    • People’s eyes generally move from left to right and up then down
    • Points on poster should flow visually from one to the next
  • Begin at the beginning!
    • Did your thesis develop from a question?
    • What are the parameters of your study?
  • Describe your methods to someone without a background in the subject
    • How did you arrive at your results?
    • Use layman’s terms—avoid specialized jargon
  • Conclusion/Discussion
    • What makes your research important?
    • What are other scholars saying?
    • Outline further questions


  • Use a maximum of three font sizes.
  • Your main points should be bulleted or otherwise stand out.
  • List your central themes.
  • When including text in paragraph form keep lines to a minimum when possible (10-12 is generally suitable). Use visual hierarchy to heading and text (e.g. large font for heading smaller font for body);
  • Include your references and the VIU logo to complete your presentation. (Remember to cite images!)

Other Resources: