Characteristics of a Title

  1. Informs the reader about what is contained within the poster.
  2. Summarizes the most important research results and findings.
  3. Simple and focused on the research.
  4. Clear and concise (e.g., less than 15 words).
  5. Avoids words or phrases that sensationalize findings and results, convey bias or provoke human emotion.

The poster title should appear at the very top of the poster (Figs. 1 and 2).  The title should be brief (e.g., less than 15 words), descriptive and summarize the most important results and findings.  Words, adjectives and phrases that covey bias or human feelings should be avoided.  Scientists strive to let the data speak for itself and allow the reader the chance to make up their own mind about an issue based on the data that is presented.  

For example, a poor title for a scientific poster would be something along the lines of: “Evil coal-fired power plants linked to dangerous mercury levels ruthlessly harm thousands of poor and defenseless children”.  A much better title would be:  “Mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants have been linked to decreased cognitive function in children”.  The first title certainly catches your eye, but it presents the research in a biased manner before the reader even has a chance to examine the poster.  The latter title tells the reader exactly what the poster is about while still allowing the reader the chance to read the poster and make up their own minds about the issue based on the data presented in the poster.   


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Scientific Posters: A Learner's Guide Copyright © 2020 by Ella Weaver; Kylienne A. Shaul; Henry Griffy; and Brian H. Lower is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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