Design Tips: Structure

Adhere to the dimensions of the poster specified by the event sponsor or course faculty, as well as any other physical specifications that are provided.

Title bar
Set up a title bar to separate this information from the body of the poster. Your title should be centered, in sentence case (not ALL CAPS), using a sans serif typeface (font size = 48 – 72). Authors should be listed on the second line in smaller font and organizational affiliations on the third line in slightly smaller font. Make sure that logos are high resolution and that the proportions are correct, and not distorted. If you have more than two logos, consider including your primary organization’s logo in the title bar, and the remaining logos in a different section of the poster, such as a footer bar or a box that identifies collaborators.

Many well-designed posters in a landscape setup are organized with a 3- or 4-column structure. Set up guidelines in your document to make sure columns are the same width, and separated by 2″ (or more if needed) to ensure enough white space between columns.

Columns can be broken into blocks if it helps to organize your information. Blocks can be vertical within a single column, or a block can cross multiple columns to create a horizontal section. Your graphics will drive the structure more than the written content, so make sure that your most important graphics are well-placed and adjust the columns and/or blocks to showcase this information. If your graphics look crowded, or are hard to see clearly, consider giving them more real estate on your poster and reducing some of the text.

You will need margins of at least 1″ to make sure that when the printer trims your poster, they don’t accidentally cut off any of your content.