E-posters and Their Utility in Scientific Congresses

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The results of scientific works, experiments, research projects, etc. can be shown to the public in different ways and their presentation in specialized congresses is one of them. Congresses are the perfect opportunity for nursing professionals to acquire and disseminate knowledge of the profession. They also allow professionals to stay up to date in their jobs, which is very important in the health sector, as it is always changing. Conferences, round tables, oral communications and posters are the main means used to share information in congresses, and all of them contribute to the exchange of information among participants and professionals of any given sector.

In this context, posters (or poster communication) should not be considered as a second-tier type of communication; on the contrary, they are becoming the best way to let the attendees interact with the author’s work, since they can provide more detailed information than a short oral presentation. This is why  in many cases posters collect the most interesting contributions of a congress. In recent years some scientific congresses have even eliminated the classic presentations in the form of oral communications and all contributions have to be in the form of posters; oral presentations are reserved for conferences, round tables, seminars, etc. where the most recognized authors in each area of interest are the speakers, while the rest of the authors may share their results via poster.

What are E-posters and why are they useful?

An eposter is an alternative to the traditional scientific printed-poster presentation system. They consist of electronic presentations displayed on big LED screens which are placed at the congress venue to make the information accessible and visible for all the attendees. Since they are not static sheets anymore, they are a more engaging and informative resource where they authors can use hyperlinks, audio, video or enlarged graphics to explain the results of their research project in a more attractive way. Plus, electronic posters offer a series of advantages that makes them the perfect vehicle to share information at congresses.

First of all, e-posters allow all the works presented to be available in the same screen all thanks to a selective search system personalized for each congress. Thus, the participants can easily access to all the information of their interest without having to choose between scheduled oral presentations that may overlap with one another. The second advantage is that with e-Posters the attendees have access to all the posters even when the event has ended, since they are often stored in virtual galleries and databases. Thus, both the attendees and those who couldn’t go to the congress can see the poster and contact the author or download the posters at home. Platforms devoted to create e-posters such as Poster Session Online even allow to start a discussion about the poster in their forums, eliminating the restrictions imposed by oral conferences. And last -but not least, since they do not require the use of paper E- posters are more sustainable than printed posters.

The structure of an ePoster

To be considered a relevant scientific work worth to be presented in a congress, your ePoster has to meet a set of criteria and follow the next structure:

✓ Title: it must be concise and identify the topic to be addressed in the work. It must be attractive in order to draw the attention of the public and thus get them to stay and read it from the beginning to the end of  it.

✓ Introduction: It should be brief and provide summary information about the work that is about to be presented. 

✓ Objectives: The purpose of the study and the aim of the research must be specified. 

✓ Materials and Methods: In this section the reader is informed of the way in which the study has been carried out, it should be described in what way the data has been obtained and analysed, what materials have been used, how it has been carried out, etc.

✓ Results: This is one of the main parts of the work and it must include the most relevant data related to the goals of the study. What have you found? Where have the results been found? Using tables, or representing the results graphically is very useful in this section.

✓ Discussion and Conclusions: It contains the interpretation of the results, as well as possible hypotheses or ideas for future projects. It is important to refrain from making conclusions that are beyond the scope of the study and to end with a final sentence that is the answer to the objective of the work.

✓ Bibliography: Although it is not an obligatory requirement to add to the scientific posters, it is advisable to include it since the bibliography will give veracity and rigor to the work.

Amy Richards
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