How to make scientific presentations and posters interesting

11-12 April 2011


Professor Jeremy N. McNeil, University of Western Ontario, Canada

summary and pre-course assignment

The objectives of this course is to provide guidelines for the preparation and delivery of effective oral and poster presentations.

Each student will be required to:

(i) Give two 10 min. oral presentations.

The first will be based on a manuscript chosen by the student (not one from their own laboratory or one that is key to their actual thesis work) and approved by Professor McNeil. However, it will be in their field of research, and they will be expected to present the work "as if they had done it".

The second will on the student's own research but prepared for an audience of 10-year old school children.

(ii) prepare one poster

This is to be in Powerpoint format. It should be based on the student's current research, but should not be one already presented at a meeting.

Each student will receive an electronic copy of all posters a week before the class starts and must be ready to comment on the positive and negative aspects of each one. However, each student will be specifically assigned the poster of one other student... and they will be expected to lead the discussion when this poster is discussed.

The powerpoint files of the two talks and the poster MUST be sent to Professor McNeil (email jnmcneil@gmail.com)  no later than 18 March 2011.

All students will participate in constructive discussions concerning the strengths and weaknesses of each oral and poster presentation.

general information

Dates :  Monday 11 and Tuesday 12 April 2011

Schedule : 8.55 - 17.00

Location : University of Neuchâtel, Faculté des sciences, UniMail, building C, room C001

Credit points : 1.5 credit point (Communication) 

Information : Please contact Jeremy McNeil or the doctoral program coordinator Christiane Bobillier (administration)

Evaluation : Full attendance, active participation during the 2 days including preparation.

Travel expenses : participants of the doctoral program are eligible for reimbursement of incurred travel expenses by train (half-fare card, and 2nd class). Please send the original tickets (no copies, except for the general abonnement) with the reimbursement form  to Dr. Christiane Bobillier.  No reimbursement for bus, taxi or car travel expenses will be paid.


  • This course is free and open to all PhD students, however priority is given to "Interuniversity doctoral program in organismal biology" participants until February 15, 2011.
  • The effective cost is approx. CHF 500.00 per person. Therefore a waiting list will be prepared to ensure that there are no empty seats.
  • Minimum number of participants: 8, maximum: 12.

Registration closed

Please note the cancellation policy (CHF 200)

Deadline: 28 March 2011