Printing Posters

Poster printing is available in the SLC Research Commons.

The printer is available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to noon and from 1:00pm to 4:30pm during the days the university is open. Printing a poster on the poster printer requires a reservation. Make a poster reservation here.

The mechanism to arrange for a time to print posters on the large format printer is done through Google appointment slots so make sure you are signed in to your Southwestern Google account. For each poster that you wish to print, sign up for a one hour slot (each slot is 30 minutes). If your prints will be 18” by 18” or smaller, you can probably print two in a hour unless they are very high resolution or on non-standard paper. The last available time slot to sign up to print a poster is 11:00am in the morning and 4:00pm in the afternoon and sign ups are on a first-come basis.

Small posters can be printed on letter (8.5x11), legal (8.5x14), or ledger(11x17) size paper using the LaserJet 5500 color printer. • letter = $.25/sheet • legal = $0.35/sheet • ledger = $0.60. You do not need to make a reservation to print on the color LaserJet printer.

Larger posters are printed using the poster printer [DesignJet 500ps] on paper rolls of widths of 36 and 42 inches. • 36” coated = $3.00/square foot • 36” heavy and 42” = $3.00/square foot

• BYOP (Bring Your Own Paper), black/white and grayscale, and prints with less than 50% coverage area are one-half the price.

Note - SU has found that the best method to print a poster is with a PDF document that is printed using Preview on a Mac.

Poster Printing Guidelines 

  • You need to come prepared to print the poster - the time is for printing and not for creation, editing or changing.

  • The InfoDesk staff will not proofread or edit your poster.
  • The best document type for printing posters are PDF files.

  • If you are using any specialized fonts, include the fonts with your file.

  • You can bring the file(s) on a flash drive, mail it to yourself, or retrieve from your network storage space (Helios).

  • If you arrive 15 minutes past your scheduled time, you may not be able to print because that may impact the next person scheduled to print to the large-format printer.

  • If you can arrive earlier than your scheduled time, please do so because you may be able to start earlier!

  • Actual instructions for printing can be found here.

Designing Conference Posters - Advice on how to prepare posters for scientific meetings, research conferences, and similar gatherings of people who want to share their stuff on really big pieces of paper.

The Basics of Poster Design - Tips on figuring out and designing the focal point or theme of your poster.

Poster Templates

These can be used with PowerPoint/LibreOffice/Google Docs - click on the image to download the template.

Green Poster with 4 Columns


Blue Poster with 3 Columns


Brown Poster with Arrows


Pastel Poster with Top-Down Design


Red/Green Poster with Three Transparent Columns
[transparencies are best printed with a Mac]




There are several places on the internet that provide free PowerPoint templates. Below is a sampling of a few:

[note that the website may specify a specific version of PowerPoint but if you have a current or relatively new version of PowerPoint, these should work just fine. Also, these will open in LibreOffice and GoogleDocs - you may need to do some adjustments.]

PowerPoint Templates for Scientific Research Posters

Scientific Poster PowerPoint Templates for Free!

Free PowerPoint Templates for Poster Design