Participants are encouraged to make a poster and/or bring a relevant exhibit or display item to represent their project. Posters and exhibits will be presented at a special in-person Showcase, on Thursday May 11 from noon-1:30 pm in the 100 level of Frist Campus Center.
Submitting to the Showcase makes you eligible for additional day-of judging awards. For the best chance to take home a PRD award, presenters should consider submitting both a video presentation and a Showcase visual. PRD will print presenters' posters free of charge and the posters will be for presenters to keep afterwards. Download the poster template here.
Why should you present at the Showcase?
- It’s a new twist on the poster session.
- You may have seen a traditional conference poster - with multiple sections, several images, and a fair bit of text. We’re focused on reaching as broad an audience as possible at Princeton Research Day, so the format for showcase posters is a lot simpler. This poster tells the audience who you are and what your presentation title is. You’ll have only one visual–one that captures your audience’s attention and draws them in to learn more about your research. Think of your poster as a springboard to start a conversation about your research, not as a summary of your entire project.
- Your poster should be accessible to a general audience, avoiding unnecessary jargon or other barriers to entry. This is an opportunity to think beyond the conventions of a single discipline.
- In addition to a poster, you are welcome to bring a display or exhibit item (instrument, sculpture, etc.) that further illuminates your project.
- You’ll also have the chance to connect with fellow researchers and artists from a wide variety of fields and learn from one another about effective research communication across disciplines.
- It’s an opportunity to gain experience and confidence communicating about your scholarship and practice, a crucial skill that will be useful throughout your time at Princeton and beyond–whether to future employers, in applications for research positions or fellowships, outside of academia.
- You have the opportunity to win an Orange and Black Presentation Award or the Showcase Fan Favorite!
Making your poster
- What are the components of the poster?
- Presenters are required to use the poster template. Dimensions should be 30 x 40 (the same as the template).
- As reflected in the poster template, the poster consists of:
- Your presentation title
- The name; class or graduation year (if applicable); and department of all co-presenters
- One visual
- An acknowledgement of support this research received
- The PRD logo
- More about the visual: Your one visual should capture a compelling piece of your research or creative work: something that speaks to the why, the how and/or the what of your project. It doesn’t need to cover everything, but at least one of these elements should be present to introduce your research.
- What could the visual be?
- A graph
- A photo
- A schematic diagram
- An artwork, illustration, or drawing
- An annotated section of text, sheet music, or other source
- …or anything else! As long as it captures something essential about your work, you’re encouraged to think outside the box when selecting your visual and designing your poster.
- What are the qualities of a compelling visual?
- Simplicity – no unnecessary features that can be distracting for the viewer
- Use of labels, when needed
- Legibility and accessibility of any text
- Minimal text – your visual should be the conversation starter, not the entire conversation
- Appeal to a broad and general audience
- Piques curiosity! You want your poster to be the starting point that draws people to come and hear more about your research.
Getting ready to present
- Beyond the poster, how should I prepare for the Showcase?
- Be ready with a 30-second pitch summarizing your research, touching on the critical questions of the what/why/how of your work.
- Think of questions that you might be asked and practice answering them.
- Keep your audience in mind.
- At the Showcase, you might find yourself talking to anyone from senior faculty in your department, to a first-year interested in your field, to a curious roommate who has no idea what your work is about. You can adjust to each of these audiences (using more or less jargon, for example), but your presentation is fundamentally the same in each situation: talk about the what, the why and the how of the research you’re presenting.
- Practice presenting to your roommates, friends, and family. Once you’re able to explain your research clearly to anyone who asks, whether they’re a seasoned researcher or someone who has no background in your field, you’ll be ready to present!
Click here to download the template for PRD posters. You must use this template and the dimensions (30 x 40) provided.
Examples of Showcase visuals and exhibits
Take a look at these examples of successful visuals as you brainstorm for your own poster. Consider what project exhibits you might want to bring to Showcase.