NCUWM Poster Session
Share your research

Conference Presentations

The NCUWM conference is a wonderful environment for undergraduate women to get experience presenting their research. We expect to have space for 48 15-minute talks, as well as one large poster session. Speakers and poster presenters are expected to provide abstracts of their presentations at the time of application, and to present on research they have conducted either individually or as part of a research group. Within two weeks of submitting your abstract on the NCUWM application page, you will receive an e-mail notifying you of your talk or poster status. Please contact us at if you have any questions regarding your presentation.

Research Presentations


You will have 15 minutes for your talk, including time for questions. If you aim to cover your talk in 13 minutes, this should allow enough time. Our rooms will be equipped with a PC computer and a projector. Please prepare your talk in PDF or Powerpoint (old or new) format. The simplest way to give your talk is to put the file on a memory stick and use the computer that is set up in the room. However, you may also choose to use your own laptop, but be sure to practice connecting your laptop to a projector before coming to the conference. Moreover, if you are using a Mac, you will need to bring your own adapter for the projector. Even if you plan to use your own computer, it is a good idea to put your talk on a memory stick as a back-up. Please note that we can not guarantee an internet connection so you will need to have your talk already downloaded on your computer or on a memory stick.

Preparing the abstract

Your abstract should be a short description of what you will be covering in your talk. When you submit your abstract online, please write it in plain text (without unusual symbols or fonts) or in LaTeX. You will have space to submit up to 1,024 characters (or approximately 150 words) for your abstract. Once we review and approve your abstract, we can confirm your talk in the schedule. We will send you an e-mail with the confirmation within two weeks of receiving your abstract. Due to the limited number of talk slots, we encourage you to submit your abstract as soon as possible.

Organizing your talk
Although the talks at NCUWM are open to the entire UNL community, most of the audience will be other undergraduate women who may not be as familiar with your research topic as you are. Moreover, your audience will have a variety of backgrounds. You will want to make sure that your talk contains enough background material so that it is understandable to everyone for a large part of your talk. A typical talk will contain a brief outline or motivating example, necessary background and motivation for your research, research results, and conclusions/summary. This is a lot to fit into 13 minutes, so you will want to practice your talk several times to see how to use that time most efficiently. You may also want to identify a few slides that you can skip or quickly paraphrase in the event that you end up running out of time. Finally, the artistic design of your talk will affect your audience's ability to follow along. A good strategy is to keep your slides as simple and uncluttered as possible, with large enough font so that people in the back of the room can read it. When you give your talk, be sure to speak loudly and at a slow enough pace for everyone to follow.

Useful links to help you prepare a talk

Poster Exhibitions


Poster presenters are expected to stand at their posters during most of the poster session. Many people will be walking around the session and will want to talk to you about your research. You will want your poster to convey your research problem clearly, and the progress you have made on it. It should contain the research problem, the background information, your research results, and your conclusions. You may want to practice explaining your poster so that you are prepared.

Preparing the abstract

Your abstract should be a short description of what your poster will show. When you submit your abstract online, please write it in plain text (without unusual symbols or fonts) or in LaTeX. You will have space to submit up to 1000 characters (approximately 150 words) for your abstract. Within two weeks of receiving your abstract, we will send you an e-mail confirming your poster.

Details on preparing your poster

You should make your poster so that it can be hung on a wall. The maximum poster size for NCUWM is 36 inches wide by 48 inches tall. If your work can clearly be presented in a vertical poster format, we encourage you to present it in this way. Note: You must request special permission to submit a poster more than 40 inches wide.

Draw a rough sketch of your poster first. Use index cards, or use graph paper and cut-up sticky notes, to visualize where the components of your poster will go. Space information proportionally. Divide your poster horizontally or vertically into three or four sections. Background color is up to you; however, lighter colors (pastels, greys) typically provide the best contrast for text, graphic, and photographic elements. Use a light background with darker photos or a dark background with lighter photos. Look critically at your layout. Cluttered posters are difficult to read. Your poster should stimulate discussion, not give a long presentation. When in doubt, edit. Choose one or two fonts and use them throughout. Add emphasis by using boldface, underlining, or color; italics are difficult to read. Remember that white space is important to increase visual appeal and readability (this is the “empty” space between sections, columns, headings, blocks of text, and graphics).

    Recommended font sizes:
  • Title: 40 pt or larger. Put it across the top and make it informative.
  • Section headings (Introduction, Methods, etc.): 36 pt bold.
  • Supporting text (intro text, figure captions, etc.): 24 pt, bold where appropriate.
  • Narrative details should be brief, in plain text, and no smaller than 18 pt.
  • Consider a larger size (36 pt) for Conclusion text, and a smaller size (18 pt) for Methods text.

We recommend that you get your poster printed by a professional, but if this is not possible, you can also choose to assemble it on a poster board. If you want to request a table and/or an electrical connection for your laptop during the poster session, please let us know. Note, however, that we cannot guarantee an internet connection or table space. Finally, if you are flying to the conference and bringing your poster with you, please take it as a carry-on, just in case there is a problem with your luggage or connections. One-piece posters can be rolled up and carried in a cardboard tube.

If you would like to get your poster printed in Lincoln so that you do not need to transport it, you will need to contact FedEx Office Print and Ship Center or the UNL Pixel Lab for information, prices, and deadlines. If you want to purchase poster board in Lincoln, it can be purchased either at the UNL campus bookstore in the Union. Please double-check their hours to make sure you can get your materials in time.

If you have any additional questions regarding your poster, please contact us at

Hanging your poster

We will be able to assist you in hanging your poster before the poster session. Most importantly, we will provide T-pins and Command Strips. The Embassy Suites requires us to use these display methods to avoid damage to walls. It is important that you use the materials we provide. Details about the set-up and take-down time for the poster session will be provided in January.

Useful links to help you prepare a poster