Poster Printing


Poster-printing presents a difficult IT time- and resource-management problem.

Users sometimes fail to schedule an appointment to print.
Users sometimes run late in preparing their posters and therefore arrive late or not at all for their scheduled appointments.
Users sometimes arrive at their appointment with their posters in the wrong format, causing printing to be more challenging and take longer.
Often, multiple users attend the same conference so multiple posters need to be printed out within the space of a day or so.
When people don't follow the agreed-upon guidelines, it is difficult to meet everyone’s poster-printing and other IT needs.
When a poster must be printed multiple times because the user did not create it correctly, this uses up very expensive resources that we cannot afford to waste (a single ink cartridge for the poster printer costs $80 (the printer uses 5 ink cartridges so thats $400). A single roll of paper costs $195). The department will cover the cost of one reprint of a poster for purposes of sending it to a collaborator or if the poster was damaged accidentally. There will be a charge for an additional poster beyond these two. Posters will not be reprinted for obvious and avoidable mistakes at the first printing (e.g., something that spell checker could have picked up). Additional charges will apply in this case based on the posters size.

Size: 42Hx50W and below$40
42Hx51W to 42HX60W$60
42HX61W to 42HX82W$80
42HX83W or more will start at $100 will be quoted immediately before reprinting.

Poster-printing presents a challenge for faculty and grad students too.

We want our posters to look great.
We need our posters before we have to get on the plane, no matter what.
It often takes longer than we think it will to create our posters.
We sometimes aren't sure exactly what we’re doing, because we only make these once or twice a year.


As much as humanly possible, we all need to be aware of one another's difficulties and work together to make sure everyone gets what they need in the end.
Sticking to our agreed-upon policies will facilitate this process enormously.

Poster Printing Policies

1) Poster-printing sessions must be scheduled 24 hours in advance.
2) All appointments must be made through the IT ticketing system. You may submit your ticket
by sending an email to or you may login into the
ticketing system and submit it there.
3) If you cannot arrive within 15 minutes of your scheduled appointment, you must notify the IT person immediately so that the appointment can be rescheduled without infringing on others' scheduled times. Besides, we don’t like it when people fail to show up to appointments with us. Neither do our IT staff!

FAQs on Creating a Printable Poster

How long will it take?


Can I use gradient colors and fancy fonts?

Gradient colors, very complicated graphics or very unusual fonts may cause the poster to fail to print because it contains too much information for the printer to process. Unusual colors may print OK, but they may not look exactly the same shade as they do on your monitor!

What file format should the poster be in?

ALL posters must be in pdf file format. Printing from other formats (including Microsoft Powerpoint) can result in distortions to text or graphics that are very difficult to correct quickly.

What program should I use to create my poster?

You should use a program designed to create graphic layouts. Some examples are Adobe Photoshop, Jasc Paintshop Pro, Adobe Illustrator, etc.
NOTE: A major advantage of using these programs is that you can set the height and width of the document to precisely the dimensions that you want, and these dimensions will carry over to the pdf file. Keep in mind that the maximum height our printer can accommodate is 42 inches.

Microsoft Office and Microsoft PowerPoint

Microsoft powerpoint was designed for presentations therefore using powerpoint to create posters generally creates a number of issues.
If you must use microsoft power point please ensure the following:

1) Never set the size of the poster in powerpoint based on the dimensions of the printed poster. Use a normal size (e.g., letter, legal, etc). Using the dimensions of the printed poster will cause the pdf file to become disorted when it is created.
NOTE: Using Powerpoint makes it very difficult to get precise dimensions on a poster. You may end up with a poster that is longer or shorter than you want or a distorted poster, or you may have to fool around for a VERY LONG TIME to get the poster to print correctly with the correct dimensions.
2) Always create the pdf file on the same computer that made the powerpoint file. Every installation of MS Office is unique to the computer running it. Because every computer uses different fonts and styles, powerpoint files (especially complicated ones like poster slides) can appear completely different on a different computer. Crossing platforms (Mac/PC) makes the problems worse. Once the pdf file is created, however, it will look exactly the same on every computer.
3) Always preview the pdf file created by powerpoint to make sure the document does not contain errors.
4) Windows users: If you wish to include a high res picture in your poster, that poster must be made using a graphics application. The images in the poster must be in a high-res image format such as tiff format. If you do not utilize a high resolution graphics then your picture will be pixelated when it is printed. Mac users do not have this issue since pdf files created on the mac contain the proper image information.
5) Windows Users DO NOT use the save as pdf or export as pdf function that comes with microsoft office. PDFs created using this method will not contain the font information necessary for your poster to print. Posters without the correct font information will come out blank when printed. Mac users do not need to worry about this issue as the macs are not affected by improper pdf creation.
6) All windows powerpoint posters must create a pdf file using one of the two methods:

Method 1: Create the PDF file using Adobe pdf creator
Please consult adobe documentation on how to create a pdf file and embed fonts.
Adobe Documentation

Method 2: Cretate the PDF file using LibreOffice or Openoffice or NeoOffice(Mac Users) These office programs are capable of opening your powerpoint file. Once you have opened the file you must correct all the problems in your poweroint poster. Once this is complete these programs can then export your powerpoint file to a printable PDF.
Office Documentation

How do I save a PowerPoint as a jpg image?

You can save a PowerPoint slide as an image and then import it into your Image Viewer to view your poster.
1) Open the PowerPoint presentation that includes the slide that you want to save as an image for use in your Offline Image Viewer presentation.
2) After you have selected the desired slide, click the "Save As..." option from the "File" menu.
3) In the "Save as type" field, you can select any one of the following from the drop-down menu: JPEG (File Interchange Format), or PNG (Portable Network Graphics Format). We recommend choosing the JPEG format if the PowerPoint slides you are saving consist mostly of images rather than text.
4) Once you have named the image file, save it to an appropriate location on your computer or network. For ease of retrieval, we recommend saving the image file to your desktop. 5) A pop-up window will ask: "Do you want to export every slide in the presentation? To export only the current slide, click "No". If you click "Yes", each slide in your presentation will be saved as a separate file in a folder.

Tips and Tricks

All users should proof their posters for flaws and errors before their printing appointment by viewing the poster in adobe pdf reader. This works on both mac and PC platforms. You can also print your pdf file on the commons color printer to proof it if you prefer to work with paper copies.

Mac Users

Mac users may save files as pdf by choosing the PRINT option from the pulldown menu within your graphics application and then selecting "adobe pdf" as the printer.

LbireOffice, OpenOffice or NeoOffice

LibreOffice and Openoffice are free power-packed Open Source personal productivity Office suites for Windows, Macintosh and Linux. NeoOffice is a similar program available for the Mac only. All three programs can create pdf files and can be utilized to view the flaws which are in a powerpoint document that you have created.



Inkscape is an Open Source vector graphics editor, with capabilities similar to Illustrator, CorelDraw, or Xara X, using the W3C standard Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) file format. It can create pdf files and can be utilized to view the flaws which are in a document that you have created in an image application.


Adobe Products

The only adobe product which is capable of creating a pdf file on the pc platform is Adobe Professional PDF Suite. PDF files created by adobe InDesign will not print on the poster printer because InDesign does not properly encode the fonts in pdf files. Adobe Photoshop also has issues creating a proper printable pdf file. Adobe Illustrator's pdf creator does not have the issues which affect adobe indesign or photoshop.

Non Departmental Posters

There is a charge of $40 or more for all non departmental posters.

Size: 42Hx50W and below$40
42Hx51W to 42HX60W$60
42HX61W to 42HX82W$80
42HX83W or more will start at $100 and you will have to request a quote in advance.