5th Canadian Obesity Summit

April 26 - 28, 2017

Banff Springs AB

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Poster Presentation Guidelines

Set-Up/Take-Down Instructions

Posters will be displayed in the Cascade room and Riverview Lounge (Exhibit Hall areas) at the Banff Springs hotel. Your assigned poster session and poster board location is available HERE.

Pecha Kucha Posters will be posted for the entire conference (Wednesday to Friday).

Regular Posters will be rotated on a daily basis (Wed/Thurs/Fri).  The location of your poster is subject to change, so please be sure to check your board number prior to the event.

For Pecha Kucha Posters - You DO NOT need to stand by your poster since you have an assigned presentation time on Wed/Thurs/Fri at 11:00- 11:30 am.

For Regular Posters - At least one of the authors must be present at your poster from 13:00-14:00 during your assigned poster session. Judges will be circulating at this time to inquire about your abstract.

Set-Up: Daily by 09:30 am (Wednesday posters must be in place by Wednesday April 26th at 09:30, Thursday posters must be in place by Thursday April 27 at 09:30 etc.).
Take-Down: Daily by 18:30pm. At the end of the day - any remaining posters will be left on a table outside the Alhambra room. If not claimed by Saturday, posters will be recycled. 

At the event, poster boards will be labeled with a board number matching the abstract to be presented on that board (if you have more than one poster, your posters have been scheduled for display on adjacent boards, where possible). Velcro and/or pushpins will be provided.

Preparation of Posters

Each poster will be presented on one side of a large poster board. The maximum dimensions for your poster are 45" wide and 72" tall (see diagram below). Your poster does not have to be the maximum size, but should be large enough to be read from a comfortable distance (at least 1.5m/~5ft away). 

A poster presentation is a graphically oriented summary of your research and is considered successful if it conveys a clear message to the viewers. A poster is not a conference paper, and simply pinning a paper to a poster board usually makes a very poor poster. In preparing a poster, simplicity is the key. A poster should not contain a lot of details–the poster should tell a complete story by itself, but a presenter can always communicate the fine points to interested participants.

The poster should provide clear information on objectives, the approach, the main results and the major conclusions of the research. Where possible, use pictures, graphs and (limited) tables rather than text. Viewers should be able to grasp the message in a short time, e.g., less than one minute.


Suggested Format

Note: alternate formats used at prior conferences are acceptable; this format may not be applicable for Overview presentations.

  • Title: Include a banner frame clearly stating the title of the poster.
  • Abstract: Display your abstract on one frame, accompanied by your name, and department.
  • Introduction: Specify the objective of your study, provide an overview of what you have done, and point out the significance and value of the research. Be succinct in this one-frame element.
  • Methods: Use as least one frame to present the methodology.
  • Results: Indicate what your research has revealed.
  • Conclusion: Include, in one frame, an explanation of the ways the results satisfy the research objective.

Finally, be sure to acknowledge any support you received that enabled the completion of your project (e.g., include the logos of your academic and financial sponsors).

Suggested Layout and Design

  • Your title should be appropriate for a general academic audience; make it interesting and informative.
  • The poster presentation should be self-contained and complete without additional oral explanation.
  • Each frame of the poster presentation should contain a text block, a graphic, or a combination of the two elements.
  • The poster presentation should clearly indicate the order for viewing.
  • Text size should be at least 18-24 points and be legible from 1.5-2 meters away. The title should be legible from 5-10 meters away.
  • Limit the number of colours and background images used to avoid busyness and distractions. Use colour to add impact and visual appeal.
  • Textual explanations should be kept to a minimum. Be creative in the graphical and pictorial representation of your research. At least 50% of the poster presentation should be figures (i.e., charts, graphs, illustrations). Try using a variety of figure types. Limit your use of tables.
  • Limit poster presentations to 12 frames.
  • Provide clear captions for all figures. The figures should be in pleasing visual proportion to the font size used for captions.

Frequent Mistakes

Too many posters do not succeed in getting their message across. Here are some common errors presenters may make:

  • Too much text!
  • Text too small.
  • Unclear structure – make sure your objectives, approach, conclusions or perspectives are clear.
  • Inappropriate structure – make sure to apply the standard structure of a written report i.e., title, abstract, introduction, experimental method, results, discussion, conclusion.
  • Poor figures – make graphics/charts reader friendly.
  • Information overload – too much information. 

People First Language

People first language is the standard for respectfully addressing people with chronic disease, rather than labeling them by their illness. Because of the importance of reducing bias associated with obesity, the Canadian Obesity Network and their partners urge all presenters to use people first language for their presentations. 

Flint, S. W. and Reale, S. (2014). Obesity Stigmatisation from obesity researchers. The Lancet, 384(9958), 1925-1926. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(14)62276-5. 
Kyle, T. K. and Puhl, R. M. (2014). Putting People First in Obesity. Obesity. doi: 10.1002/obj.20727. 
Obesity Action Coalition 

Click here to download a PDF copy of the Poster Presentation Guidelines.