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Session chair guidelines

General Information

Check out the 2019 Scientific Program to see all accepted sessions and abstracts. Use the navigation options, i.e. sessions organized by a particular section, sessions co-sponsored by other organizations, sessions co-organized with one or more sections, sessions that will be webcast or otherwise available for ‘virtual’ viewing online, or sessions related to a particular AGU index term. Use the online program to also find similar sessions or presentations to add to your itinerary.
In addition to the most substantial scientific program ever presented at AGU Fall Meeting, AGU is pleased to offer an array of new and intriguing events and experiences at this year’s meeting, from Centennial sessions and symposia to workshops, tutorials, field trips, and much more.

Note that registered guests are NOT allowed in the poster hall or in the scientific sessions. Only registered scientific attendees can enter the poster hall. Please have your conference badge visible for the security guards at the entrance to the hall.

Acceptance notifications were emailed on 1 October. Presenting authors and chairs can access the Participant’s Corner using their abstract submission credentials to manage their scientific program participation. If you have any questions about the program, please contact the AGU Scientific Program Team.

Check out the Beginner’s Guide to the AGU Fall Meeting, published on Eos.org.

Note that we have updated our Photography and Social Media Guidelines for Meetings. See below for more information.

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Session chair guidelines

Oral session chair guidelines | Poster session chair guidelines | eLightning session chair guidelines

 

Oral session chair guidelines

 

Hours

Monday – Friday
8:00 – 10:00 a.m.
10:20 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.
1:40 – 3:40 p.m.
4:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Location

Moscone Center

 

Oral Session Chair Training

Whether this is your first time chairing an AGU Fall Meeting oral session or you are experienced at overseeing an AGU Fall Meeting oral session, you are encouraged to either view the Online Chair Training or plan to attend one of two 30-minute sessions onsite in San Francisco. AGU’s audio-visual team will discuss the use of all equipment in the room. Dates and times to be determined.

Empty Oral Presentation Slots

If an author withdraws from an oral session, the session conveners can request that a poster presentation from the accompanying poster session be moved to replace the withdrawn oral presentation. This can only be done to and from accompanying sessions and only with the authors’ explicit consent. Please send an email to the Scientific Program Team with the details of the withdrawn abstract, the details of the abstract that will be moved into the oral presentation slot, and the email or message where the poster presenter has given consent to being moved to an oral presentation.

Note: New abstracts CANNOT be added to fill empty slots in either oral or poster session.

Oral Session Chair Responsibilities

Please note: Oral sessions are held in Moscone West and Moscone South.

AGU would like to assure all meeting participants feel safe, welcomed, and included, and that our meetings promote and help reflect diversity, inclusion and excellence in science.

Prior to or during your session:

  • Check the online program for any changes or updates.
  • Refer to the AGU Ethics and Equity Center for guidance on issues you may face as a convener or session chair.
  • Familiarize yourself with the pronunciation of presenter names and affiliations.
  • Ensure that all speakers are treated equally and have their fully allotted time.
  • Oral session chairs will have access to the AGU Fall Meeting Presenter Pre-Submission Review to view the list of presenters and their contact information in their sessions and to see if an oral presenter has uploaded a PowerPoint presentation. This access will be available by mid-November.
  • Due to safety regulations, please stress that your audience members should not sit in the aisles. This will allow for the maximum number of attendees to attend the session and ensure that the city’s safety department will not close the session room or stop the session.
  • Use any reasonable means to stop a speaker who has exceeded the allotted time. The session must stay on schedule for both the audience and other speakers, per the approved program.
  • Only an author listed on a paper may present. No other substitutions are permitted.
  • If a paper has been withdrawn or a speaker does not appear, call for discussion of previous papers in that session or call a recess. Do not start the next paper until the time listed in the program. Please note any “no-shows” presenters on the chairperson’s evaluation, which will be provided in advance of the meeting.
  • You may interrupt speakers in order to ask them to speak more audibly, slowly, or clearly; to face the audience; or to briefly explain the message of an illegible slide.
  • The chair, not the speaker, conducts the discussion by recognizing participants on the floor. During discussions, ask participants to identify themselves and speak audibly so the audience can hear the questions as well as the replies.
  • If a paper draws no questions from the floor, you are encouraged to ask questions in an attempt to stimulate discussion, if time allows. However, some papers elicit more than the usual number of comments; judge accordingly.
  • To maintain the schedule, it may be necessary to defer lengthy discussions to the end of the session or to suggest that the discussion be continued in private, once the session has ended.
  • Please be aware of signs of aggressive questioning which may border on bullying,
    especially if directed towards student or early career scientists. Please intervene in real
    time if you witness such behavior.
  • No new presentations may be added to the session.
  • Each oral session room is equipped with computer projection equipment. All presentations MUST be uploaded in the Speaker Ready Room and sent to this equipment for viewing.
  • Speakers cannot connect their laptops into computer projectors. Speakers have been instructed to load their presentation in advance in the Speaker Ready Room.
  • As chair, you must keep the session on schedule. Do not go to the next presentation, and do not allow the session to overrun while a projectionist is trying to solve problems.
  • Please note, if you are chairing multiple sessions and also submitted abstracts to the scientific program, the program committee CANNOT guarantee that you will be free of scheduling conflicts at the meeting due to the size of the program. Please ensure the co-conveners of the session are available to step in to chair a session if the need arises.
  • An online evaluation will be sent to you a few days prior to the meeting. Please be sure to complete it as soon as your session is complete. Include an assessment of the session’s attendance as well as any papers that were not presented.
Panel sessions

If your session is scheduled as an official panel approved by the AGU Fall Meeting Program Committee, please note that the oral session room you are scheduled in will have a head table to seat eight. We recommend starting the panel by having each panelist introduce themselves and provide a brief summary of their stance on the topic. Following introductions, the chair can open the panel for discussion to be concluded by either audience Q&A or a summary from the chair.

Short talks sessions

If your session has been designated as a short talks session, this means that your session contains presentations that are quicker than the traditional 15-minute presentation. As each session is scheduled differently according to the convener’s vision of their session, please reach out directly to the Scientific Program Team if you have any questions or are in need of any guidance in chairing this session.

 

Poster session chair guidelines

 

Poster Session Hours

Monday – Friday:
8:00 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.
1:40 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Location

Moscone South

Poster Session Chair Responsibilities

AGU would like to assure that all meeting participants feel safe, welcomed, and included, and that our meetings promote and help reflect diversity, inclusion, and excellence in science.

Prior to or during your session:

  • Check the online program for any changes or updates to your session.
  • Refer to the AGU Ethics and Equity Center for guidance on issues you may face as a convener or session chair.
  • Familiarize yourself with the pronunciation of presenter names and affiliations.
  • Please plan to arrive in the poster area before your session is scheduled to start.
  • Make sure authors’ poster boards are numbered properly.
  • Make sure authors are beginning to set up their posters before the start of the session and are not experiencing problems. We ask that presenters set up their posters by 8:00 a.m. as posters remain up on their board all day.
  • Make sure authors have clearly posted the time when they will be at their boards. These signs can be picked up at the Poster Assistance Booth.
  • Note any poster boards that are not withdrawn but are still empty. The evaluation survey referenced below will ask for any “no-show” presentations.
  • Help any authors who are having trouble with layout, setup, or equipment.
  • Encourage participation by introducing individuals in the area to specific authors and performing “crowd control” as necessary.
  • Please be aware of signs of aggressive questioning which may border on bullying,
    especially if directed towards students or early career scientists. Please intervene in real
    time if you witness such behavior.
  • No papers may be added or moved to another session and poster presentations CANNOT be moved to different poster sessions due to the logistical layout of the poster hall.
  • Should any problem develop with poster set-up, facilities, or equipment, contact an AGU staff person at the Poster Assistance Desk.
  • Remind authors to remove their posters by 6:30 p.m. on the day of their presentation. Any posters not removed from poster boards by 6:30 p.m. will be recycled.
  • Please note, if you are chairing multiple sessions and also submitted abstracts to the scientific program, the Program Committee CANNOT guarantee that you will be free of scheduling conflicts at the meeting due to the size of the program. Please ensure the co-conveners of the session are available to step in to chair a session if the need arises.
  • An online evaluation will be provided to you prior to the meeting. Please be sure to complete it as soon as your session is completed. This process includes an assessment of the session’s attendance as well as any papers listed in the program that were not presented.

 

eLightning session chair guidelines

 

eLightning Session Hours

Monday – Friday
8:00 – 10:00 a.m.
10:20 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.
1:40 p.m. – 3:40 p.m.
4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Location

Three designated eLightning Areas in Moscone South

See the eLightning presenter guidelines for details on session and presentation format.

 

eLightning Session Chair Responsibilities

AGU would like to assure that all meeting participants feel safe, welcomed, and included, and that our meetings promote and help reflect diversity, inclusion, and excellence in science.

Prior to or during your session:

  • Check the online program for any changes or updates.
  • Refer to the AGU Ethics and Equity Center for guidance on issues you may face as a convener or session chair.
  • Familiarize yourself with the pronunciation of presenter names and affiliations.
  • Ensure that all speakers are treated equally and have their fully allotted time.
  • Each session contains three minutes at the start of the session for an introduction to be given by the session chair(s). The chair can use this time to familiarize the audience with the format and topic of the session, and note when the audience can ask questions (either at the end of the lightning presentations, during group discussion, or at the individual presenter’s monitor following the group time). Chairs can also briefly introduce all presenters so that individual introductions don’t take away time from the presenters’ three minutes.
  • There will be a timer to help keep all presenters to three minutes for their lightning presentation. Please help presenters keep to this time limit.
  • The discussion that follows the conclusion of all lightning presentations is optional, depending on how you want to organize your session. If the discussion goes on longer than anticipated, as long as you do not share the time block with another session you are free to allow discussion for as long as you see fit during your time block.
  • Following the "session station" time, please instruct the group and the presenters to proceed to the individual monitor stations. Each monitor will be labeled with “M1”, “M2”, “M3” and so on which corresponds to the presenter’s final paper number. Presenters will be sent instructions on how to locate their monitor.
  • Please be aware of signs of aggressive questioning which may border on bullying,
    especially if directed towards student or early career scientists. Please intervene in real
    time if you witness such behavior.
  • This program is a newer format, so we appreciate any feedback, positive or constructive, to help us improve this program from year to year. We will circulate a survey at the end of the week to collect this feedback, so please take notes on any suggestions you have during your session.

Photography and social media guidelines

AGU has updated its Photography and Social Media Guidelines. Photography at AGU meetings is allowed for personal use unless the presenter indicates otherwise by adding the icon below on their poster or slides.

Icon with a camera and phone with "No Photos" text

For session chairs

This policy is new, and some presenters may miss the communications and updates. Presenters may also indicate their preference by displaying their own image or words on their slides, or they may verbally indicate that they prefer no photographs. In the event that you observe photographs being taken when the presenter has elected “No Photo,” please feel free to remind the audience to honor the preference and refrain from photos.

AGU suggests that the chair confirm that presenters are aware of AGU’s guidelines in advance of the session to avoid any disruption, so that they have the opportunity to inform attendees of the “No Photo” option prior to their presentation.