How to Write an
Abstract, Traditional Poster
or Oral Presentation

Abstract Format and Layout Guidelines
Important, please read this whole guide!

Writing an Abstract | Preparing an Oral Presentation | Preparing a Traditional Poster

What is an Abstract?

An abstract is a short written summary of work which an individual would like to share with others at a professional gathering.

What is the purpose of the abstract?

  • A required step when requesting permission to share or present information at the ISMRT.
  • Offers a brief summary which gives an overview of the type of work or project that one would like to present or share.
  • Explains the value of one’s project or presentation.
  • Demonstrates an individual’s knowledge of the subject.

Why should an Imaging professional submit an abstract either clinical or research focused to the ISMRT?

  • Oral presentations and poster presentations are methods used to share information of value with others in a profession.
  • Your work may be unique to you and your workplace and of interest to others in your profession.
  • You may receive helpful feedback from members of your audience that may be familiar with your topic.
  • Your place of employment may offer travel opportunities to meetings which abstracts have been accepted.
  • Opportunity to build onto your resume/CV.
  • A unique learning experience.

Should an imaging professional work independently on the abstract?

  • An individual may choose sole authorship
    • Receive full recognition for abstract
    • Full control over abstract development and resulting abstract
  • An individual may choose co-authorship
    • Less demanding on any one individual
    • May produce a more well rounded piece of work

How should an imaging professional choose a topic?

  • The subject should be a healthcare topic that is related to your field and one that you are personally interested in
  • The topic should be one you feel confident in sharing with others.

What type of subject matter should be offered in the abstract?

  • May have a clinical focus, which demonstrates improvement in patient care or diagnosis through the application of existing MR techniques
  • May have a research focus which describes innovative MRI investigations and/or development
  • Options for the focus may include:
    1. Summarizing a technique and it’s applications that you currently employ
    2. Conducting your own personal, small scale research; such as a survey or a comparison study of collected data
    3. Researching a topic/technique that is not common to your workplace for the purpose of learning something related to your profession that is unfamiliar to you

How to Compose an Abstract

Abstract Guidelines (pdf)
Once a topic has been selected and researched a one-page composition should be written.

For an abstract in the clinical practice focus:

  1. An introductory paragraph on the background or purpose of your topic
  2. A body paragraph which illustrates the teaching point of your work
  3. A comprehensive summary or conclusion of the abstract

For an abstract in the research focus:

  1. An introductory paragraph stating the background or purpose of the work you wish to present
  2. A body paragraph in which details the methods for your topic
  3. A results paragraph in which you discuss the data that were analyzed
  4. A conclusion which explains the reasons for the choice of topic, what was learned from the research, and what conclusions were made based on the results


Sample Abstract: Clinical practice focus (Word Document)
Sample Abstract: Research focus (Word Document)

Are there composition guidelines that need to be followed when submitting an abstract (for ISMRT or other organizations)?

  • The official meeting abstract template must be used
    • The template can be accessed on the ISMRT Website-Call for Papers.
  • Abstract text must be written inside the area that is indicated (usually a small rectangle is provided for your text). This may be the amount of space allotted for printing in the meeting program so it is important to stay within the rectangle space.
  • A standard software program should be used to type the text of the abstract.
    • Include images/graphics within the template box.
    • Do not send pdf files unless specified to do so.
    • The abstract may need to be blinded for judging purposes.
    • If CAPITALS are specified for the title, then use all capitals.
    • Sometimes initials are asked for rather than full spelling of author’s names, and in most cases they want the degrees of the authors omitted.
    • They may want the name of the affiliated institution to follow the author’s name.


What happens after the abstract form is submitted to the ISMRT?

  • The ISMRT will send the abstract to a review panel who will evaluate its content
  • Once the panel has completed its review, individuals who submitted abstracts will receive a letter to inform the applicants whether or not the abstract is accepted
  • If it is an acceptance letter, the ISMRT will provide information on the type of presentation the abstract is accepted for, oral or poster as well as the date, time and location of the presentation

How do I proceed if the abstract is accepted?

  • The abstract now becomes the outline for the presentation.
  • Follow the criteria for the type of presentation the abstract was accepted for
    Poster presentation (See Traditional Poster Guidelines)

    Oral presentation (See Oral Presentation Guidelines (pdf))

  • The presentation must adhere to the abstract that is accepted
    • Must remain a clinical practice focus or research focus
    • Must maintain the same teaching point, methods or results as summarized in the accepted abstract