Presentations and Posters

Overviews

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

PowerPoint / Google Slides / Keynote

These linear presentations, often called “powerpoints,” are a series of slides that often contain bullet-pointed text, pictures, and clipart. You can also create voiced-over video presentations for online courses, following the same style (see Slideshow Voiceovers for more info).

Many people think…

…but DesignLab can help you engage with your audience for a dynamic presentation!

Recommended Software:

Microsoft PowerPoint Logo

  • Microsoft PowerPoint: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via Office 365. It is also installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using OneDrive will allow for collaboration between multiple creators.

Google Slides Logo

  • Google Slides: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via G Suite (formerly known as Google Apps). It is a web-based system, so can transition easily between multiple computers regardless of operating systems. Google Slides are also very good for collaboration, as they allow multiple users to edit at one time. These files are also compatible with Microsoft PowerPoint when downloaded.

Apple Keynote Logo

  • Apple Keynote: This is a proprietary software program that is available only for Apple products. It is installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout under the Mac partition. Keynote does not easily allow for collaboration and files must be saved properly to be compatible with Google Slides or Microsoft Office, (additionally some formatting and animations may be lost when moving between software).

  • CanvaThis online program has a limited free option, as well as monthly and annual subscriptions at a cost. Many of the functions of Canva are free, but there are certain elements available via a subscription. Canva files are created online and can be downloaded as PNG, JPEG, or PDF. They do not always allow for collaboration in the free option. Additionally, alignment tools are there but are not easy to follow. Canva presentations are easier to modify than the other softwares listed above. Files can be exported as PDF or MP4 Video, but can also be presented directly from Canva.

Flash Talks

Flash talks, are shorter presentation styles, that focuses on distilling information. Some flash talk styles, such as PechaKucha-style and Ignite-style, have auto-advancing slides.

PechaKucha-style is a trademarked linear presentation format consisting of 20 slides, each shown automatically for 20 seconds, and accompanied by spoken text and sound effects. At 6 min, 40 sec total, PechaKucha presentations present ideas in a clear, engaging, and efficient manner. They are usually delivered live but can also be recorded. Some variants include less slides.

Ignite-style presentations are another trademarked form of auto-advancing flash talks, like PechaKucha-style. These presentations also have 20 slides, but with 15 second intervals, making them slightly shorter.

In the News:

NPR: Hate Long, Rambling Speeches? Try PechaKucha

Recommended Software

  • Microsoft PowerPoint: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via Office 365. It is also installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using OneDrive will allow for collaboration between multiple creators.

Google Slides Logo

  • Google Slides: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via G Suite (formerly known as Google Apps). It is a web-based system, so can transition easily between multiple computers regardless of operating systems. Google Slides are also very good for collaboration, as they allow multiple users to edit at one time. These files are also compatible with Microsoft PowerPoint when downloaded.

Apple Keynote Logo

  • Apple Keynote: This is a proprietary software program that is available only for Apple products. It is installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout under the Mac partition. It does not easily allow for collaboration and files must be saved properly to be compatible with Google Slides or Microsoft Office, (additionally some formatting and animations may be lost when moving between software).

  • CanvaThis online program has a limited free option, as well as monthly and annual subscriptions at a cost. Many of the functions of Canva are free, but there are certain elements available via a subscription. Canva files are created online and can be downloaded as PNG, JPEG, or PDF. They do not always allow for collaboration in the free option. Additionally, alignment tools are there but are not easy to follow. Canva presentations are easier to modify than the other softwares listed above. Files can be exported as PDF or MP4 Video, but can also be presented directly from Canva. If using auto-advancing slides, this software is easiest to set up, but doesn’t allow for presenter view in the auto-advancing setting.

Prezi

The online presentation software Prezi offers an canvas or whiteboard where text, images, sounds, and videos are placed and then presented by navigating or “zooming” through them. This spatial way of presenting can situate information in different contexts as well as represent processes and relationship in compelling ways.

Pro Tip
  • Don’t zoom too much or too fast or you’ll make your audience motion-sick!
Software

Prezi Logo

  • Prezi: This online program has a limited free option, as well as monthly and annual subscriptions at a cost. There is also educational pricing available. Prezi files are created online and can be presented directly from the online site or be downloaded and presented locally.

Posters

Informational and scientific posters convey research and knowledge through a combination of printed text, data visualizations, and images. Researchers often use posters to present and discuss their work with others at conferences and symposiums. Posters may contain embedded infographics and photographs, and their overall organization varies across fields and range from sparse and simple to dense and complex. There are also many different software programs that can be used to create posters. 

Recommended Software:

Microsoft PowerPoint Logo

  • Microsoft PowerPoint: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via Office 365. It is also installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using OneDrive will allow for collaboration between multiple creators. PowerPoint also works with Excel to easily make charts and graphs. This is usually the standard software for creating research posters, however, there are limited alignment and design tools.

Google Slides Logo

  • Google Slides: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via G Suite (formerly known as Google Apps). It is a web-based system, so can transition easily between multiple computers regardless of operating systems. Google Slides are also very good for collaboration, as they allow multiple users to edit at one time. This software is based heavily on PowerPoint, so there are limited alignment and design tools for this software.

Apple Keynote Logo

  • Apple Keynote: This is a proprietary software program that is available only for Apple products. It is installed on all InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout under the Mac partition. There are limited alignment tools, but the Keynote design tools are more extensive than Microsoft PowerPoint and Google Slides.

Canva Logo

  • Canva: This online program has a limited free option, as well as monthly and annual subscriptions at a cost. Many of the functions of Canva are free, but there are certain elements available via a subscription. Canva files are created online and can be downloaded as PNG, JPEG, or PDF. They do not always allow for collaboration in the free option. Additionally, alignment tools are there but are not easy to follow.

Piktochart Logo

  • Piktochart:This online program has a limited free option, as well as monthly and annual subscriptions at a cost. Piktochart files are created online and can be downloaded as PNG files. These files are usually lower in resolution than a typical poster, but making the dimensions larger will allow for downsizing with a higher resolution. They do not allow for collaboration in the free option and they only allow for 5 active projects at a time. Additionally, alignment tools are difficult to use. However, this software is very good for making charts and graphs!

Adobe InDesign Logo

  • Adobe InDesign: This software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using a Creative Cloud account will allow for easy transition from one computer to another. With layers and alignment tools, this is one of the best options for creating posters if you know or have time to learn the software.

Adobe Illustrator Logo

  • Adobe Illustrator: Like InDesign, this software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using a Creative Cloud account will allow for easy transition from one computer to another. With layers and alignment tools, this is another good alternative for creating posters if you know or have time to learn the software.

Adobe Photoshop Logo

  • Adobe Photoshop: Like InDesign and Illustrator, this software is available to UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff via InfoLab machines, both in the labs and for checkout. Using a Creative Cloud account will allow for easy transition from one computer to another. With layers and alignment tools, as well as plenty of photo editing capabilities, this is another good alternative for creating posters if you know or have time to learn the software.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Working on something different?

The above options are just a few examples of presentation and posters styles. Want help with something not listed here? Make an appointment with a DesignLab consultant to discuss how we can help!

Examples

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

PowerPoint / Google Slides / Keynote

Slideshow: Death by Powerpoint (by Alexi Kapterev)

Video: How to Give an Awesome (PowerPoint) Presentation

Flash Talks

Video: A PechaKucha on PechaKuchas

Website: PechaKucha.com Examples

Video: An Ignite Presentation on Ignite Presentations

Prezi

Video: Creative Prezi Design & Zoom Examples

or Explore Prezi (with Award Winning Examples).

Posters

Example: DesignLab’s Poster on Posters:

DesignLab's Poster on Posters File

Presentation & Posters Icon

Software Support

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Microsoft PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint LogoFrom LinkedIn Learning:
From Software Training for Students:

Google Slides

Google Slides LogoFrom LinkedIn Learning:
From Software Training for Students:

Note: Since Google Slides is based heavily on Microsoft PowerPoint’s interface, many of the software training links listed under Microsoft PowerPoint may be applicable to both software programs.

Apple Keynote

Prezi

Canva

Canva LogoFrom LinkedIn Learning:
From Canva:
From Software Training for Students:

Piktochart

Piktochart Logo
From Piktochart:
From Software Training for Students:

Adobe InDesign

Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Photoshop

and more...

Are we missing a software that you would recommend to others? Email us at designlab@wisc.edu and we’ll do our best to add it here!