Posters and notices for internal use in Microsoft Word
A number of templates are available which allow staff to design internal posters and notices which are
consistent with the University’s brand. The instructions below are for Microsoft Word 2007. The same
principles apply to both A4 and A5, portrait and landscape documents.
Please download the appropriate size and orientation template for your poster. This will have the
correct logo and keyline already inserted; the instructions below can then be used to create your
poster or notice.
Links as follows (saves users returning to previous page to download templates):
Download blank poster template (A4 portrait)
Download blank poster template (A4 landscape)
Download blank leaflet template (A4 folded to A5)
Word document posters should be used for short-life, internal purposes only, eg for departmental
events and information notices.
Keep layouts as simple as possible and not too content heavy.
The logo is correctly positioned on all of the downloadable templates. Due to the limitations of
desktop printers it is set in from the edge and has a keyline around it to define it.
A coloured block should always be positioned under the logo to create a masthead. The
masthead is a vital element of our visual identity and nothing else must be placed within it.
Coloured blocks are a key part of our visual identity and should be incorporated into posters using
tables. Designs should be created to have minimal ink coverage for printing out internally on laser
printers, while still maintaining enough coloured blocks for impact and brand recognition.
Tables are used to create the coloured blocks, as well as the white dividing lines between those
blocks and to ensure different elements of the document can be aligned.
Times New Roman is the font used for headlines and statements. Arial should be used for all
other text. Try to avoid using too many different sized fonts on your poster.
All text should be aligned left with an 8mm indentation. Please see instructions for how to do this.
Only quality imagery, for which usage rights have been obtained, should be used. Imagery needs
to be the correct size and format before it is imported into the Word document, preferably an RGB
JPEG. Choose imagery from https://www.essex.ac.uk/photo_library.
Any of the colours from our palette (found in the brand toolkit) can be used in Word documents.
For RGB values refer to the colour specifications on page 16 of the brand toolkit.
Bullet points should be square and set at 80% of the text size. They should be coloured where
possible. Extra instructions on how to create bullets can also be found on the brand web pages.
How to create a poster or notice
1. Create your poster by using a table
1a. To insert a table
INSERT > TABLE
You will notice a grid comes up. Here you must choose how you want your poster to look. A typical
branded poster uses one column and seven rows. Each row is made up of either a block colour,
chosen from the colour palette, a white divider row, or a large free text area. Feel free to experiment
with the table (different numbers of rows and columns) to make different types of poster.
1b. To adjust the table to the correct size
Select row > right click > TABLE PROPERTIES > TABLE > OPTIONS > type the measurements
below in the boxes (they will automatically convert).
Note: You must literally type in the measurements below (‘6pt’ and ‘0’). Do not use the slider to find an
1c. To amend the rows on your poster
Select row > right click > TABLE PROPERTIES > ROW > SIZE > tick SPECIFY HEIGHT and
choose a row height > set row height to Exactly.
It will take trial and error to get all the row heights the way you want them and to avoid the document
moving to a second page. To get the bottom row as close to the key line as possible:
- Show formatting symbols by clicking HOME > PARAGRAPH > ¶
- Highlight the paragraph mark ¶ that appears under the bottom row of the table > change the
font size to 1
- (NB you will need to overtype the 1 as the smallest size in the drop down list is 8)
You can then click on the ‘next row’, ‘previous row’ buttons if you have more than one row. This will
switch between the rows you have in your table allowing you to set their heights individually.
Note: You do not necessarily need an actual table row at the very bottom of the poster. If you try to
add one, the document will move onto a second page. The table could end 2mm above the bottom
1d. Use borders and shading to colour the block
Select table > TABLE TOOLS > DESIGN > BORDERS: Icon with no border
Select row > TABLE TOOLS > DESIGN > SHADING > MORE COLOURS > CUSTOM. Insert
RGB values of colour required
1e. Use a plain white row to create a divider between coloured blocks
Rows should be used in your table to divide up specific areas of text or coloured blocks. A dividing
row should be set to 2mm and have a fill and border of none.
Right click > TABLE PROPERTIES > ROW > tick SPECIFY HEIGHT and enter a value of 2mm >
set row height to Exactly.
2. Align the text
Following these instructions for both tables and body copy text ensures the text aligns with the red
squares in the University logo.
Select table > HOME > PARAGRAPH > click the arrow icon in the bottom right corner >
INDENTS AND SPACING
Indentation: left 8mm > right 8mm
Vertical positioning (not always necessary):
Right click cell > CELL ALIGNMENT > ALIGN CENTRE LEFT
These poster templates have been structured to carry blocks of colour and text only. Complex poster
designs should be produced by the Printing Centre. If it is absolutely necessary to use an image(s),
please do so sparingly, ensuring that they are taken from the University’s photo library.
You should now have the basis of your poster. The areas you may wish to customise further are
heights of rows, colours of rows and the inclusion of text.
For further information and help with designing your own poster in Microsoft Word, please e-mail: