Poster Design, Guidelines, and Instructions

By following the instructions and guidelines below, your poster presentation will go smoothly. Please read all information carefully before coming to the meeting.

Poster Size and Layout

Each author will share a poster board with one other author, and each will have a useable area measuring 2’10” (86.36 cm) wide x 3’8″ (111.76 cm) high. This is a portrait/vertical format. Poster materials may not extend outside the assigned half-board.

Attendees may take photos of posters if the poster author agrees. Authors who do not want their posters to be photographed will have to indicate as such on their posters, using an image file supplied by ASHG. This image should be placed at the top right corner of the poster at a minimum size of 3” (7.62 cm) x 3” (7.62 cm).

Poster Content and Design

Content Requirements

  • ASHG requires disclosure of gene names and sharing of research data so that findings can be replicated, and other investigators with similar data can test findings against their own. Authors who do not provide gene names will be subject to sanctions as determined by the Program Committee.
  • When presenting data and health information (including photos), all presenters must have informed consent compliant with human subjects and applicable HIPAA regulation.
  • If the abstract has been previously published, authors must indicate on their poster the date and publication.

Designing Effective Posters

  • Identify 2-3 principal messages you have to convey. Choose a title that captures your main point.
  • Prepare a heading at the top of your poster indicating the abstract title, authors, and affiliations.
  • Lettering should be at least 1″ (2.54 cm) high.
  • Summarize current research in graphic form whenever possible; use charts, tables, graphs, pictures, etc., and minimize the amount of text.
  • Arrange materials in columns and use ‘white space’ to help direct readers logically through your poster.
  • If you do not want your poster to be photographed, be sure to include the “no photography” image at the top right corner of your poster, at a size of 3” x 3” or larger.
  • Prepare your poster on laminated poster paper, fabric, or cardboard, allowing for space to mount it on the poster board with push pins.
  • Posters should be self-explanatory but not comprehensive. You will supplement and elaborate during your conversations with other attendees.

Tips for Illustrations

  • Your presentation must be readable from distances of at least 3′ (90 cm). Keep visuals simple and clear.
  • Provide information in smaller type below the heading. Details of methodology should be brief and should be placed at the end of the legend.
  • Simple use of color can add emphasis.

Do not write or paint directly on the poster boards.

Mounting, Presentation, and Removal

Authors must put up and take down their posters according to the schedule below. Authors must be present at their boards for the duration of their scheduled presentation time. Posters should remain on the boards for all three days.

The letter W, T, or F of the program/abstract/board number indicates the day (i.e., Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday) on which authors present their work. The number indicates the board you are to use for displaying your poster. Poster boards will be pre-numbered, and floor plans and poster attendants will be available on site to help you find your poster board.

Remember to bring your own pushpins (in your checked luggage). A very limited number of pushpins will be available at the meeting.


10:00-11:00 am: All poster authors (Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday) place posters on boards

10:00 am-4:30 pm: Posters available for general viewing

2:00-4:00 pm: Poster Session I (Wednesday Authors Present)

  • 2:00-3:00 pm (odd poster board numbers; author must be present)
  • 3:00-4:00 pm (even poster board numbers; author must be present)


10:00 am-4:30 pm: Posters available for general viewing

2:00-4:00 pm: Poster Session II (Thursday Authors Present)

  • 2:00-3:00 pm (odd poster board numbers; author must be present)
  • 3:00-4:00 pm (even poster board numbers; author must be present)


10:00 am-3:00 pm: Posters available for general viewing

1:00-3:00 pm: Poster Session III (Friday Authors Present)

  • 1:00-2:00 pm (odd poster board numbers; author must be present)
  • 2:00-3:00 pm (even poster board numbers; author must be present)

3:00-3:15 pm: All authors remove posters from boards

3:30 pm: Exhibit & Poster Hall closed

NOTE: For safety reasons, you will not have access to the poster area before 10:00 am on Wednesday or after 3:30 pm on Friday.

Traveling with Your Poster

In case your poster does not arrive, we suggest you bring a smaller version of your poster on 8½” x 11″ size paper as well as a copy of the poster on a USB thumb drive so that it can be printed on site. Many airlines now require that poster tubes be checked rather than brought as carry-on luggage. Please check with your airline prior to traveling.


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