Scientific Posters

Course Overview

Science poster creation is an important skill for scientists wishing to summarize their research findings at conferences .  They are intended to attract discussion or future funding for extended research.  In this course Year 10 & VCE students can learn how to explore and apply poster design principles to communicate and explain scientific ideas. Students will explore the steps involved in designing a poster correctly by working through a series of interactive activities.


A number of VCE Study design contain specifications for the production of scientific posters.   This course is designed to support student interpretation of these fundamentals when designing their own posters for assessment and submission.

Background information

“The cardinal sin of every poster I’ve seen, including the posters I’ve designed myself, is that they assume people are going to stand there and read our posters in silence for 10 straight minutes, following the order of the sections we’ve laid out.”
(Source: YouTube/Mike Morrison Morrison, Ph.D. Michigan State University)

What are the fundamentals of design for a quality poster? This course will introduce you to these and invites you to critically explore a number of examples.


Prior knowledge

There is no prior knowledge necessary

Learning Intentions

In this program, the students will:

  1. Become familiar with the steps involved in developing an effective scientific poster.
  2. Evaluate critically some poster examples.
  3. Distinguish between the necessary components of a VCE scientific poster.
  4. Determine the best way to display different types of data.
  5. Develop an understanding of some design principals for a captivating poster display.

Estimated Duration: 60 Mins

Related Victorian Curriculum descriptors

  • Scientific knowledge and understanding of the world changes as new
    evidence becomes available; science knowledge can develop through
    collaboration and connecting ideas across the disciplines and practice
    of science (VCSSU089)
  • Science and technology contribute to finding solutions to a range of
    contemporary issues; these solutions may impact on other areas of
    society and involve ethical considerations (VCSSU090)
  • Identify questions, problems and claims that can be investigated
    scientifically and make predictions based on scientific knowledge (VCSIS107)
  • In fair tests, measure and control variables, and select equipment to collect data with accuracy appropriate to the task (VCSIS109)
  • Use scientific knowledge and findings from investigations to identify relationships, evaluate claims and draw conclusions (VCSIS111)
  • Reflect on the method used to investigate a question or solve a
    problem, including evaluating the quality of the data collected, and
    identify improvements to the method (VCSIS112)
  • Communicate ideas, findings and solutions to problems including
    identifying impacts and limitations of conclusions and using appropriate
    scientific language and representations (VCSIS113)

Course Development

Jo Tate