Critically evaluating scientific posters – Online course

Scientific posters are a common way to present research findings at scientific conferences. They must be brief, clear and concise to communicate scientific research effectively. But, if a poster looks good, can we trust the science or research behind the poster?

You will evaluate sections of two different posters on the same topic to practice identifying elements of strong and weak posters and research. You will also make recommendations for improving the study and poster. Poster 1 has been designed to be a below average example of a poster and study, and Poster 2 is a high quality poster and study.

Download the ‘Scientific poster evaluation tool’ and use it to help you evaluate each poster by assigning a mark to each statement, according to the following criteria:

(4) Strongly agree; (3) Agree; (2) Disagree; (1) Strongly disagree or (0) Not shown

This tool is a fillable PDF so you can complete it digitally.


Year level: 10 - VCE Biology.

Estimated duration: 60 minutes.

Example posters - optional supplementary activity

The scientist mentors at GTAC have created a number of scientific posters, which are based on their current or previous research. The posters can be downloaded and evaluated with the 'Scientific poster evaluation tool' for further practice after you have completed this online course.

Thirsty for life - Osmosis (this poster was created specifically for students to practice on and is not actual research)

Is exercise good for the immune system?

What is the role of the neverland gene in fungus-feeding insects?

Population genetics of the southern rock lobster - Is translocation genetically viable?

Environmental enrichment therapeutically reduces anxiety-like but not depression-like behaviours in mice lacking the serotonin transporter

Intestinal worm infections among refugee children in Thailand

CRISPRing out Rab11

Functional Characterisation of BCL2-antagonist killer (Bak) apoptotic interfaces

Click the ‘Activate this course’ button below, then click ‘Poster 1’ in the list that appears to begin.