Helpful Hints for Project Displays

Santa Clara Valley Science and Engineering Fair Association

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• Inexpensive display boards and other display aids are available

at most office and art supply stores.

Use type families and colored backgrounds to associate groups of information throughout your display. Remember that black or dark type is easiest to read and that judges do notice spelling and grammar.

Your title should be big, easy to read, and capture the spirit of your research. You can use two titles if you wish, a scientific one on top and one for the lay audience below it.

Possible sections for your board might include: Introduction, Background/Research, Hypothesis, Experimental Design, Data, Data Interpretation, Conclusion/Discussion, Further Research.

“A picture is worth a thousand words.” Photographs and drawings are good display tools: they help your audience understand your research and are eye-catching aids for your display. Remember you need written consent (Form 4) if you use a photograph of anyone other than yourself.

Use the largest possible visuals and type. Important text should be legible from at least three feet away. Use font sizes of at least 24 points on your display board.

Use brief statements. Aim to have three to five bulleted statements, each 10 to 20 words per section.

Tables of numerical data have a place—but maybe it’s in the notebook rather than on the display board. Use graphs or charts instead of tables wherever possible.

Label the units of measurement used on each chart axis (e.g., “Centimeters of Rain,” “Years,” “Number of Ladybugs”).  Use metric (SI) measurements and scientific names if possible.

• Caption your graphs and charts and indicate trends, conclusions drawn, etc.