BIOL 327 American University of Armenia Heal the Bay Community Partner Infographic

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BIOL327 Ecology and People

Guidelines for Poster Preparation
Poster Content
Your final summation of the Community Engagement Project will be in poster format. Scientists
at conferences often present their work in poster format. Posters are a different way of
conveying information than what you may be used to. The objective of a poster is to provide a
summary of information with interesting visuals so that you can grab the attention of people
passing by. They should want to stop, read more and possibly ask you questions. The goal,
therefore, is to catch the viewer’s attention and prompt them to want to know more about
your community engagement project.
Summarize your Community Engagement Work with one of the course Community Engagement
Partners. Your poster should make clear what the organization or project does and how you
contributed to their mission this semester. Reflect on the experience of contributing to a
community project in the time of covid-19. Give your perspective on the outlook for the future
for that organization and for your own community involvement, short term and long term.
While the Report was more prospective, this assignment is intended to be more reflective on
your experience.
Use pictures of yourself while engaged in your community service project and some other
illustrations.
Here are some tips to make an effective poster:
1. The title should quickly tell the audience what your poster is about. It should be
the most prominent block of text on the poster usually position top and center in
your poster in large font (see template). Don’t use all caps for your title as that is
difficult to read. Make it catchy so that people will want to know more.
2. Organize your poster in labeled sections. Each section should have a clear
heading so that readers can quickly identify the sections. It’s easier for people to
read if your text is presented in small blocks. The sections should flow in a logical
manner so that no one ends up lost in your poster. The. Template suggests
section headings. Feel free to choose your own). At a conference Poster
Session, some people may only read the first paragraph and maybe your last

paragraph and if they have real interest in your poster they will read more, or ask
you about your project. (I will read all of your poster.)
3. Keep the amount of text to a minimum to entice readers to read the whole poster.
Don’t crowd your poster with a lot of information. You don’t need to include
everything in this format. Highlight the essentials and encourage the reader to
seek more information from you. Use small blocks of text of around 50-70 words
and keep each section under 150 words. Try to keep the whole poster under 800
words. Make every word count to convey your Community Engagement
experience.
4. Keep the color scheme simple. Keep the number of different colors to a minimum
and use color to emphasize parts within your poster, such as the title, and
section headings, or in a graph to contrast different factors. Avoid dark
backgrounds in your poster. Dark text on a white or light colored background is
easier to read than light text on a dark background.
5. Use sans serif fonts. Sans serif fonts are those fonts such as Helvetica, or Arial
that don’t have the little hooks on the edge of letters (e.g., “sans serif” versus
“serif”). Serifs are great for small text on printed paper such as a journal articles
or newspapers but they are difficult to read from a distance. Hence, sans serif
fonts are best used for posters. Look closely at signs and billboards to see which
type of fonts are most used. You’ll see sans serif fonts more frequently than
others.
6. Type size needs to be visible from a distance. The poster template has
guidelines for text site for headings and content. For graphs, make sure that your
labels and headings are legible from a distance. The default font size is probably
too small. As a guideline, when you insert your graphic into powerpoint, view it at
100% using the zoom in feature and step 5 feet back from your computer. Can
you still clearly read all of the numbers, the labels, etc.? If not, you need to
enlarge the font sizes.
7. Reduce photo resolution to a manageable size. Try to keep the file size less than
50MB to make sure it uploads with no problem. If your poster exceeds that then it
is most likely because of the size of the photos. Many digital cameras save very

high resolutions which in Powerpoint would create images too large for your
poster. It is tempting to just shrink the photo in Powerpoint to make it smaller to fit
it where you want it. But in fact, the file is still large and still contains information
stored in the file but not shown on the screen. If you have several high resolution
pictures in your poster, it will cause the poster file size to balloon. Images can be
reduced to 1600 x1200 pixels and still be effective in the poster. This can be
done in Adobe Photoshop if you are in possession of that program, or else there
are a number of free alternatives. You probably already have some photo editing
software that can resize photos or can find an ap.
You can use any software you like to make your poster as long as it is in the dimensions
of 48” wide by 36” tall and is submitted as a Powerpoint file or a PDF. A 48” x 36”
poster template in PowerPoint format to help you with designing your poster. The
template is just a guideline to help you determine how big your text and your pictures
should be, and how the layout can look. The color scheme is up to you. The sections in
the template are just placeholders and you can choose what you want to showcase in
your poster. It should convey your volunteer experience and what you have learned
about people and ecology while doing this project. You can open the Powerpoint
template using Keynote or Google Docs if you wish. Save the file as Powerpoint for
uploading to Canvas.

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