Session Moderators in Paper Sessions

Session Moderators are responsible for introducing the paper session, guiding discussion, monitoring chats, and timing presentations. We suggest you prepare in advance to provide guidance to attendees in your session. Download the Guide for Session Moderators in Paper Sessions for more information.

Preparing for the Session

  • Check for changes to your session
    • Check the Annual Meeting Program for any updates/changes to your session
    • Papers will continue to be withdrawn even up until the actual sessions take place at the Annual Meeting. Please check periodically for withdrawn papers in your session(s).
  • Assist presenters who do not have a laptop or cannot bring a laptop to the meeting by coordinating with the other presenters who do have a laptop. Laptops are required for presentations in a paper session.
  • Contact the presenters in advance of the Annual Meeting to ensure that they are prepared for their presentations.
  • Discuss the session structure and time usage with presenters well in advance.

During the Session

Manage logistics such as introductions:

  • Announce the session title
  • Introduce yourself
  • If a presenter is absent, inform the audience
  • Explain the session format (90-minute session); we recommend allowing each speaker to present for 10 minutes and holding questions until the end to ensure each presenter gets equal time to discuss his/her paper

Timekeeping:

  • Remind the speaker that you will give a 3-minute warning
  • You could hold up your fingers or use a piece of paper or an audible timer (perhaps on a smartphone). You may also want to stress the importance of staying on time as a housekeeping item before the sessions starts.
  • Arrive 10-15 minutes prior to the session start time
  • Begin closing the session 2-3 minutes before the official end time

Manage and encourage conversations:

  • Prepare a few comments or questions of your own to get the conversation started (5 minutes)
  • Encourage questions; ask questioners to self-identify
  • If a question takes more than 30 seconds, ask the person to get to the point quickly
  • If necessary, repeat the questions so everyone can hear
  • Start conversations amongst the presenters