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Poster Requirements & Templates

SKILLS WORKSHOP:  Get tips and learn how to prepare a poster for SURF.  Workshop date will be announced in 2019

Poster Templates

There are two acceptable formats for poster presentations at SURF, one-sheet poster and multiple-panel poster with banner.

One-sheet poster: The maximum poster size for SURF is 36-inches wide by 42-inches high (~92 cm x ~107 cm), to ensure that two posters can fit side-by-side on a campus poster display unit. A template is provided, which may be downloaded here as a Powerpoint file.

Multiple-panel poster with banner: This format allows more time for the student researchers to compile their results and then print panels (8.5″ x 11″ size pages) of their presentation themselves using Powerpoint or similar software programs. Students often like to mount their printed panels on cardboard or posterboard in coordinating colors to enhance the presentation. Multiple-panel posters are better suited for last minute revisions to the presentation. A banner (36-inch wide) should be printed as a header for the corresponding panels.  A template for the banner is provide, which may be downloaded here as a Powerpoint file. In total, a multiple-panel poster with banner should take up no more space than a 36” wide and 42” high poster (~92 cm x ~107 cm).

(If you have problems downloading any file from this page, contact

Poster Formatting Tips

During the, Presenting Your Research: Scientific Poster Workshop, Kathy Sutphin provides an overview of how to make a poster for a scientific poster presentation. The .pdf version of the presentation is available below and provides the basics of designing, formatting and presenting a scientific poster.

Poster Formatting Tips (.pdf)

Remember to save your file frequently as you work on your poster.

Poster Printing

Mr. Tim Ford, CNMS Research Graphics, is able to accept requests for printing posters.

Requests must be submitted to Tim Ford no later than (2019 deadline will be updated) to ensure posters will be available for SURF 2019. The requirements listed below MUST be followed to ensure accurate poster printing for the event.

  • Poster files should be emailed to Tim Ford in a .PDF format ( He reserves the right to edit posters for size and color.
    • One-sheet poster:  The file must be submitted for printing as a single .pdf file.
    • Multiple-panel poster: Only the banner portion of the multiple-panel poster should be printed at by UMBC Research Graphics. The banner must be submitted for printing as a single .pdf file. The panels should be printed by the presenter using a ink-jet or laser color printer.
  • The poster presenter’s name should be included in the poster file that is submitted (i.e. SmithAJPoster.pdf)
  • Please be aware that there is a cost for one sheet poster or banner printing; therefore a PS ChartString or identification of who is paying for the cost of the poster printing should be identified in the poster submission email to Tim Ford.
  • Do not use light colored text on dark backgrounds. This uses large quantities of ink that are expensive, take longer to dry, sometimes run, and sometimes can change color mid-poster
  • Many colors used in posters print much darker than they may appear on the computer monitor
  • Again, the Graphics lab reserves the right to make changes to your poster, such as lightening the background color, if deemed necessary.

Important: If another shop or resource is used for poster printing, please be sure to check on the amount of time required to complete the job and to pick up the finished product.  Avoid problems by planning ahead.