A good poster communicates your message clearly, quickly and succinctly.

It is able to capture attention, stimulate discussion, and gives you the opportunity to distribute more detailed information in a brochure or other item. A poster is a good opportunity to present your evaluation findings, your organization, and to get useful feedback.

An effective poster operates on many levels: it is a source of information, a means of starting a discussion, a support to a presentation, and should also be able to stand alone when you're not there to provide an explanation.


Conference poster summarising research paper "Effects on environmental grantmakers and their beneficiaries"

Source: Krikser, 2010

Advice for choosing this method

  • A poster is useful when you would like to present findings and discuss them with other development professionals, students or interested persons in a setting such as a conference or workshop.
  • A poster can be produced quickly, with few resources – and is an effective way to bring a message across quickly and succinctly

Advice for using this method

  • Know who your audience is so that you can communicate to them most effectively.
  • Before you begin, roughly sketch out your poster on paper.
  • Focus on simple key messages (if possible: focus on a single message).
  • Use text sparingly: Display the essential content - the messages - in the title, main headings and in graphics and images.
  • Try to keep 40% of the poster free of text and images to eliminate distracting “visual noise”.
  • Use large enough font to be able to be viewed 5 feet (just under a meter) away.
  • Sequence the information in a logical order.
  • Keep displays simple and text brief; a viewer should "get it" in 30 seconds. You can provide in-depth information in a handout. 


Krikser, T. (2010). Monitoring and evaluation – effects on environmental grantmakers and their beneficiaries. [Print Poster]. Retrieved from

Stetson, Valerie. (2008). Communicating and reporting on an evaluation: Guidelines and Tools. Catholic Relief Services and American Red Cross, Baltimore and Washington, USA. Download: (PDF, 1.5MB)

Torres, R.T., H. Preskill, and M. E. Piontek. 2005. Evaluation Strategies for Communicating and Reporting: Enhancing Learning in Organizations. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

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