Come see—literally—a new way of presenting scientific abstracts that relies less on the written word and more on visuals to help viewers digest information more rapidly.
At the upcoming Triological Society Combined Sections Meeting, to be held January 23–26 in Coronado, Calif., visual abstracts will be on display during the poster session. Considered a novel approach to delivering and processing scientific and scholarly information, and one that represents a move into a digital age that relies more on visuals than text, visual abstracts are essentially a graphic presentation of a study.
“A visual abstract takes the traditional prose abstract built on introduction, methods, results, and conclusion, and creates a graphical depiction that summarizes the study,” said Michael M. Johns, MD, director of the University of Southern California Voice Center, division director of laryngology, and professor in the USC Caruso Department of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery in Los Angeles. “Visual abstracts allow people to see the core details of a study more rapidly.”
Along with showcasing visual abstracts in poster sessions, students and physicians are sharing visual abstracts on social media and publishing them in medical journals. Laryngoscope Investigative Otolaryngology is taking a lead in promoting the use of visual abstracts (see figure 1).
To further promote the use of these abstracts, The Triological Society will host a visual abstract competition during the poster session at the upcoming meeting. Researchers with accepted poster presentations for the meeting were asked to create a visual abstract of their study that will appear in place of or alongside their traditional abstract. All visual posters submitted will be judged during the meeting on creativity, content, and design. A monetary cash prize and announcement will be awarded the winner.
“Our goal with this competition is to promote the use of visual abstracts to enhance the poster session for everyone coming to the meeting,” said Dr. Johns.
Learn more about visual abstracts and the competition.