A poster session, in the field of higher education, is a classic way for students and researchers to present their work with fellow peers, and contemporaries. The essential takeaway of a poster session is that it helps presenters share research and analysis with a large number of individuals in a simple and concise manner. From the audience’s point of view, a poster session gives you an opportunity to observe a variety of different perspectives towards the specific theme of the session. Traditionally, poster sessions are hosted in the physical space, serving as an opportunity for students and researchers to not only present their work to a large, live audience all at once but also network and build relationships with audience members and fellow presenters. Unfortunately, universities have had to transition from in-person to virtual since March of 2020 due to the pandemic. The good news is that there are a number of virtual poster session benefits that in-person poster sessions simply cannot compete. Here is a list of benefits you can only get from hosting a virtual poster session:
Poster Quality Improves
Let start with the most detrimental and essential benefit as to why you should transition to virtual… poster creators have more control over their work.
When creating the physical poster for a poster session, plenty of things can go wrong. Dimensions may not translate from screen to paper, certain materials are not available, aesthetic mistakes are made that can’t be undone. Having a virtual poster session takes away the stress of constructing a physical poster perfectly. Eliminating the physical plane brings in more potential for creative ideas that are no longer impossible while in person. You can try creating a digital poster using an editing software like Adobe Photoshop and Canva to really capture the essence and feeling of your poster presentation.
Having a digital poster is a less stressful process during construction. It is also a lifesaving condition when a poster creator finds a mistake or error in their original poster creation. With an in-person poster, one blemish can be worrisome and frustrating for the creator to adjust. With a digital poster, errors of dimensions and sizing, copy, and overall design can be tweaked and adjusted with a few clicks from your computer. No more stressful nights creating a physical poster.
Another great benefit from virtual poster sessions is the proofreading and editing process. By making your poster digital, you can share your poster with as many people as you want for review and feedback! Professors, students, peers, and researchers and provide feedback with a shareable file of your poster. This gives poster creators an opportunity to get a variety of different perspectives and input which results in better feedback.
The most innovative benefit of having a digital poster is the ability to integrate elements into your poster. With a virtual poster, creators can add hyperlinks and clickable buttons to their poster to enhance and support their research. Examples of links placed on virtual posters include videos, infographics, survey research, academic research articles, etc. Having the ability to insert links to your poster brings a new dynamic to a poster session and provides a more engaging event with audience members diving deeper into every poster.
Helps you Develop your Presentation Skills in the Digital World
The professional and academic world is changing rapidly with a focus shifting to virtual learning. College interviews, job interviews, office hours, recruitment sessions: important decisions that can very well define the trajectory of one’s career. To thrive in this new environment, you must accustom, equip, and train yourself with skills that will help you succeed in the digital world. Virtual poster sessions and presentations share the same skill level and mentality for success. Being able to successfully present your virtual poster to hundreds and even thousands of viewers is a great accomplishment to acknowledge and build upon when preparing for the digital future.
Going Virtual Reduces Barriers to Participation
Hosting a virtual poster session tears down three barriers commonly found in an in-person poster session: academic digitalization, poster limit, and geographical limitations.
Barrier # 1: Academic Digitalization
Academia and universities even before the pandemic were looking at ways to digitalize their curriculum with both eco-friendly alternatives and more accessible methods of education. Aspects like online quizzes and paper submissions have been an eco-friendly option for protecting our environment. Going virtual eliminates the use of printing and constructing large posters from common school materials that harm our world.
Universities have also advocated the use of virtual and digital mediums to help provide accessibility for presenters who may be strapped for cash or might not have immediate access to a printer or expensive school materials.
Barrier #2: Poster Limit
Traditionally, poster sessions are held in a conference room, convention center, school gym. Any wide-open, indoor space where presenters can set up shop and own a section of the showroom. But as with all physical spaces… there is always a capacity limit.
By going virtual, your poster session can have as little or as many as you want. With a platform like Remo, you can host a poster session with up to 500 presenters by creating a virtual poster session with multiple floors and buildings, optimizing your poster limit.
Barrier #3: Geographical Limitations
Another downside of having an in-person poster session is the fact that the event is located in a single, physical location. This leaves the possibility that your poster session may only have presenters who were able to attend, rather than the best presenters and researchers out in their respective academic fields.
Virtual poster sessions eliminate the geographical limitations present in an in-person poster session. With a stable internet connection, audience members and presenters from around the world can now attend your poster session without having to worry about travel accommodations and scheduling conflicts.
Virtual Poster Sessions are Less Expensive
With an in-person event, not only are you limiting yourself to a single location where presenters and students must arrive and set up shop, but you also open a set of logistics that need to be addressed.
In-person events involve a number of physical aspects that need to be organized and planned prior to the poster session. Logistics like renting a venue, catering for your attendees, entertainment during the down periods, decoration design and production. None of these logistics have a cheap fix.
Going digital means not having to worry about these logistics. With a virtual poster session, rent, food, entertainment, and decorations like sponsorship banners become afterthoughts. With a virtual event space like Remo , you can customize your event space without having to break the bank. Entertainment can be placed using videos and alternative forms of media. Sponsorship banners are also easy to set up with open slots in a Remo event.
There are several virtual poster session benefits that cannot be replicated in the physical environment. Logistical limitations are broken and innovative solutions are unlocked by going virtual. We all know its near impossible to replicate the free-flowing feeling of social interactions that happen in person. But different communication mediums have different strengths. In the case of poster sessions, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of going virtual versus in person.
Looking at the event trends we’ve seen in 2020, hybrid and virtual events are here to stay. It looks like your poster session will, and should be virtual in the future. If you’re searching for a virtual events platform to present your poster on, try out Remo. With our interactive features, your poster presentation will be a success. We offer a free 14-day trial or you can check out our success stories to see how other customers have used our products.