13 August 2020

Posters with plans get as much feedback as posters with results

“Prereg posters” was an idea floated a couple of years ago (and nobody told me about it!) (Tibon et al. 2018). The idea is to present planned work on a poster, before data are collected, to solicit feedback.

Recently, a new paper came out (Brouwers et al. 2020) showing that these prereg poster work pretty well. The prereg posters with no data (or maybe very preliminary) seemed to get as much feedback and as much foot traffic as posters with data.

The kind of feedback people got differed, though, with prereg posters getting more attention to the methods and stats discussed, as shown in the figure below (click to enlarge).

Distribution of responses to the post-conference survey question, “what kind of feedback did you receive?” among presenters of prereg posters (left) and traditional posters (right). NR represents the total number of responses.

One question that wasn’t asked of poster presenters was, “How valuable did you find the feedback you received?” It would have been nice to try to asses whether the feedback was as valuable in addition to how much people got.

I think this is an important finding for people making posters in general. The abstract submission deadline is often so far in the future that people haven’t completed data collection and they don’t know what they will have when the conference rolls around. This can be reason for people to stress out. This paper suggests that that’s okay. People will still come and talk to you!


Brouwers K, Cooke A, Chambers CD, Henson R, Tibon R. 2020. Evidence for prereg posters as a platform for preregistration. Nature Human Behaviour. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-020-0868-z

Tibon R, Open Science Committee CBU, Henson R. 2018. Title TBA: Revising the abstract submission process. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 22(4): 271-274. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2018.01.008

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