Presentation guidelines

Guidelines for speed talks and posters

All presentations should be designed to engage an interdisciplinary audience!  

Take a moment to look up some guidelines to familiarize yourself with the rules of thumb for presenting to diverse audiences or read this simple list of easy to implement suggestions.  


  • Presenters must bring printed posters (we will not have printing capability).
  • Standard sized (36 vertical x 48 horizontal inches) poster boards will be provided.  Posters should be no larger than this size.  Smaller posters are fine.  Posters will be mounted using binder clips or pins (provided by us).
  • Posters should be set up ahead of the poster session. Poster number assignments will be indicated on the symposium schedule.
  • Here are some simple tips for poster design in video form and a quick list.

Speed talks

By July 14, 2022, if possible, send the speed talk file to Dr. Zheng (

If you choose not to send the file ahead of time, you must upload the presentation to the presentation computer before the start of the conference.  Presentation computers to check or upload slides will be available at the Patek Lab located in 026 (one floor down from main entrance) Biological Sciences Building on Duke University’s campus from 3-5 pm on July 18 (walking directions).  In addition, from 7-9 pm on July 18, Patek Lab members will be seated in the outside patio area (weather permitting) at the Washington Duke Inn’s Bull Durham Bar.

Uploaded presentations can also be checked during breakfast, breaks, and lunch in the Forrest Room (see venue map on the symposium program) on July 19th and 20th.


  • 4 minutes are allocated for each speaker: 3 mins for presentation and 1 min for transition. Questions will be saved for after the session.
  • Maximum 3 slides are allowed for each talk.  Slide 1: title, presenter name and contact information.  Slides 2-3: Research slides
  • Slides can be either in google slides format or in Powerpoint format (wide screen with 16:9 ratio.)  Filename should read: LASTNAME_FIRSTNAME.  When you send the file to Dr. Zheng, it can be: a powerpoint file (must be less than 20MB), a link to a downloadable powerpoint file (can be more than 20 MB), or a link to a google slides presentation.


  • Minimize use of slide animations and transitions due to the time constraints, but feel free to use videos to demonstrate “fast movements”!
  • Embed videos and audio within the presentation.  Before sending us your presentation, double check that you have successfully embedded your videos by opening the presentation on someone else’s computer.
  • Try to use standard fonts (Arial, Calibri, Georgia, Times New Roman, Verdana).
  • Session chairs will be very strict about the 3-minute time limit.
  • To ensure speed talk timing, presenters will not be able to use their own computers for presentations.  All speed talks in one session will be presented from a single computer.
  • Speakers can double check their presentations with the help of symposium organizers. Details will be indicated on the symposium schedule.