Developing content

When deciding what content to include in your poster, aim to convey the essential information succinctly and visually. Consider:

  • What type of narrative should my poster communicate?

    An effective poster will tell a unified story. All the parts of the poster need to be logically connected to each other and there needs to be a congruence between the content of the poster, including text and visuals. Consider whether your poster requires a persuasive and critical argument, or if a more neutral presentation of information is expected for your poster narrative.

  • What information is required for my poster, and what information can I exclude?

    Being selective with content will give your poster greater focus and impact.

  • What information can be represented visually with a graph, figure or image, and what information must be communicated with text?  

    A poster with too much text is visually unappealing and hard to read, so try to 'tell the story' with engaging visual elements as much as possible.

  • How will I organise the content into sections?

    Sometimes the task instructions will tell you what sections to use. A common approach is to adopt the same structure as an academic research paper (i.e. introduction/background, aims, research design, results, discussion/conclusion). For some tasks, you may choose to organise the content into sub-topics or themes.

Read the task instructions carefully to understand the poster's requirements and communication purpose.

Selecting content

Use the task instructions to organise your poster's content. Although poster requirements can differ across subject areas and assessment tasks, many posters include some or all of the following elements when explaining a research study:


The content or sections of your poster will depend on the specific requirements of your assessment task or discipline. For example, you may be expected to provide more descriptive or tailored section headings to suit the specific requirements of your project or assignment. If in doubt, check the task instructions or ask your teaching staff for clarification.

Once you have decided what content to include, the next step is to consider how to present it.