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University of Wisconsin–Madison

WiscCores Showcase 2020 Table Exhibit Guidelines

Advertising and audience

The Showcase will be widely advertised and strong attendance from the campus community is expected.

The target audience for the WiscCores Showcase will include

  • Researchers in physical sciences, biological sciences, social sciences, the arts and humanities
  • Faculty, staff, postdoctoral researchers, graduate students and undergraduate students
  • Campus community members


GENERAL ADVICE: Target the naive audience who may not be aware how the research capabilities of the core can impact their projects.  Technical details and instrument descriptions are unlikely to be engaging – promote the kinds of questions that can be asked and answered by your core.

Table Exhibit Design Considerations (DesignLab can help!)

A table exhibit should demonstrate the core’s major resources, services and expertise, and illustrate how the core can assist in a wide range of research applications.  Effective table displays will engage prospective new users with high-level overview of capability and relevance to a wide range of research applications.  A successful exhibit will allow researchers to envision expanding the scope or impact of their projects through partnership with the core.

Each table exhibitor will be allocated 6-8 feet of display space*.  The 8-foot display space may be used in a variety of ways and all materials must be free-standing (no poster boards or racks will be provided).  Some examples of display materials include tri-fold displays, backdrops, banners, tablecloths, equipment demos, interactive materials, brochures, and more.  Some materials may be placed behind and to the side of the display tables provided the flow of traffic is not interrupted.  * At the core registration deadline, 65 cores registered to attend and there is sufficient room in Varsity II and III for each core to occupy its own full-length table.

Some specific design recommendations include:

  • strong visual display
  • limited text
  • large fonts
  • engaging message for naive users


Tips for tabletop displays are provided by Exhibitor Online, a trade industry magazine:

Examples and templates of tri-fold displays are offered by the UW-Madison Office of Strategic Consulting:

Examples of successful interactive posters (not in tri-fold display format) for the recent BadgerConnect 2018 event can be found here:

UW Medicinal Chemistry Center

Flow Cytometry Laboratory

Note that only a limited number of displays will have access to electrical outlets and these must be located near the walls.  Please include the request for an outlet in the special accommodations section of the core registration form, or email Isabelle Girard < >.


The goal of the showcase is to engage researchers who are not familiar with the range of equipment, expertise and services that cores provide, so displays should be accessible and engaging: displays designed for scientific conferences may be less successful.    The exhibit (display, materials and people) should address the common questions from the researchers’ perspective:

  • what do you do?
  • what equipment or resources do you have?
  • what expertise or experience do you offer?
  • what research questions can you help answer?
  • what do your services cost?


Handouts and cards

One-page handouts with a web address may work well.  Approximately 100 copies should be sufficient, and a blank request sign up can be used to follow up with interested researchers.  Business cards or contact cards are useful.  High-quality cards can be printed on a laser printer using an Avery template

Interactive components

Attendees at the WiscCores 2019 research event enjoyed hands-on interactive components at displays, including models, microscopes, videos and more.  Consider a variety of ways to engage the audience and email < > if you need access to an electrical outlet for the event.

Setting up and Taking down

Table displays (but not laptops or other valuable components) may be dropped off at Union South the evening before the Showcase (Tuesday March 3) from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm.  Alternatively, table displays may be brought to Union South on the morning of the event, March 4, between 7:30 am – 8:30 am.  Table exhibits should be set up and ready by 8:45 am.

All exhibits must be taken down by no later than 1:00 p.m. following the showcase. Exhibitors are responsible for removing and transporting their own materials back to their offices.

Helpful resources

  • DoIT Digital Printing and Publishing (DPPS) offers full-service printing for posters, business cards and brochures. A typical tri-fold poster is around $110 but contact for estimates.
  • DesignLab in College Library and Biocommons in Steenbock offers free one-on-one design tutoring for UW-Madison students, faculty and staff.
  • University Marketing can assist with branding and graphic design (fee-based service). UW logos and branded templates can be downloaded from UMark:


OVCRGE Office of Campus Research Cores

Isabelle Girard < >