Oral Session Guidelines

Please use the checklist below to ensure that you have not missed any important steps in preparing for your presentation at the 2010 Ocean Sciences Meeting.

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Prepare Your Presentation.

Acceptable formats for Presentations:

MS Windows: Microsoft PowerPoint, Acrobat PDF.
Mac: Microsoft PowerPoint, Acrobat PDF, Apple Keynote.

  • For information on creating PowerPoint presentations, please see the PowerPoint Tips & Style Guide at http://www.projectionnet.com/styleguide/index.html.
  • Graphics must be well designed, simple, and legible to everyone in the audience.
  • Use as few graphics as possible for the time allotted. As a general rule, use one graphic for each 1 or 2 minutes of presentation time.
  • Presentations are most readable on a dark background (blue, for example) and bright lettering (yellow or white). It is helpful to step 8-10 feet back from your computer screen and make sure your slides are legible. Avoid using small fonts that will be illegible from the back of the room, and break up a complex slide into a series of slides.
  • Devote each graphic to a single fact, idea, or finding. Illustrate major points or trends, not detailed data.
  • Avoid long or complicated formulas or equations. Each graphic should remain on the screen for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use the minimum number of words possible in titles, subtitles, and captions. Standard abbreviations are acceptable.
  • Use bold characters instead of fancy fonts.
  • Table preparation: Use not more than three or four vertical columns or more than six or eight horizontal rows. Information is hard to read with more columns or rows. Avoid vertical or horizontal rules as they distract the eye and clutter the graphic. Whenever possible, present data using bar charts or graphs instead of tables.
  • Graph preparation: Avoid more than two curves on one diagram; a maximum of three or four curves may be shown, but only if well separated. Label each curve; Avoid symbols and legends. Avoid data points unless scatter is important.
  • Colored graphs are very effective. Color adds attractiveness, interest, and clarity to slide and viewgraph illustrations and should be used whenever possible. Contrasting color schemes are easier to see.
  • Examine every graphic and view each under adverse light conditions before presenting at a meeting. It is not often possible to provide excellent lighting at meetings.
  • An introductory and a concluding graphic can greatly improve the focus of your talk.

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Determine Your Audio/Visual & Equipment Needs

All oral session meeting rooms are equipped with the following audiovisual equipment:

1-LCD projector
2-Computers (1 Windows-based PC and 1 Mac)
1-Laser pointer
1-Speaker timer
1-Podium Microphone
1-Lavaliere Microphone

Computers in the oral session rooms have the following configurations:

Intel Core2 Dual Processor 2.13 Ghz
Windows XP Pro Service pack3
Microsoft Office 2003 with the Office 2007 Compatibility pack
Adobe Acrobat Reader 9
QuickTime 7.64
17"Monitor set to 1024x768 Resolution.

Intel Processor Mac Pro
MAC OSX 10.5.x (Latest Updates)
Microsoft Office 2008
Apple Keynote 5.02 (iWork09)
Adobe Acrobat Reader 9
QuickTime 7.64
17"Monitor set to 1024x768 Resolution.

All videos should be in AVI, MPEG, or MOV format so they will run properly on the computers provided. Presentations should be reviewed in the Speaker Ready Room to be certain the fonts are displayed correctly.

Contact AGU@projection.com for further assistance on submitting your presentation.

If you have questions, contact the AGU Meetings Department at os-help@agu.org.

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Create a Backup Copy of Your Presentation.

We recommend you bring at least two copies of your presentation to the meeting in case there is a problem with one. The following media formats will be supported:

  • USB storage device
  • CompactFlash card
  • MultiMediaCard (MMC)
  • Secure Digital (SD) card
  • Memory Stick card

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Order Additional Audiovisual Equipment.

(Order Form will be available soon!)

AGU endeavors to provide up-to-date-equipment but cannot provide for every need. Other equipment is available, but at a cost to the presenter.

The deadline to pre-order additional equipment at the discounted rate is February 8. Orders may be placed on site at the Facilities Desk at a higher rate.

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Upload your Presentation

Pre-submit Your Presentation.
Password: OS2010

The site for online submission will be available on 14 December. Online pre-submission is strongly encouraged. If you submit your presentation via the Web site, you will save time in Portland waiting to preview your presentation.

Note: Deadline to pre-submit your presentation is Thursday, 18 February 5:00 p.m., eastern standard time.


To enter the upload site, enter your e-mail address and the password: OS2010. The first time you log in to the system, you will be asked to create a new, unique password that you will use for subsequent logins. You can upload as many revisions to your presentation as you like, but please bring a copy of the most updated version with you to the meeting.

If you have problems, please e-mail your questions to AGU@projection.com.

Even if you upload you presentation, you must check in at the Speaker Ready Room. See below.

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Check in at the Speaker Ready Room at Least 24 Hours before Your Session.

The Speaker Ready Room is available for presenters on the first level (near the oral session rooms) in Room D133.

Checking in at the Speaker Ready Room is the most important step you will take to ensure your presentation is a success. ALL speakers are required to check into the Speaker Ready Room at least 24 hours before their presentations. Those presenting on Monday, 22 February must check in Sunday between 1530h and 1900h. We strongly suggest that presenters scheduled for Monday, 22 February use the pre-submission option.

The hours of operation of the Speaker Ready Room:

Sunday,    21 February 1530h-1900h
Monday,   22 February 0700h-1900h
Tuesday,    23 February 0700h-1900h
Wednesday,   24 February 0700h-1900h
Thursday,    25 February 0700h-1900h
Friday,    26 February 0700h-1600h

When reviewing your presentation, make sure all fonts appear as expected and all audio/video clips are working properly. You may edit your presentation at this time. When you are finished reviewing your presentation and verifying it is ready, Projection personnel will queue your presentation.

The file will then be transferred to the computer network at the meeting. When the presentation is to be given, the file will be loaded on the computer in the oral session room. Once the presentation has started, the speaker will control the program using a computer mouse. At the end of the meeting, all files will be destroyed.

Laptop Support

In order to support presenters who want to review and modify their presentations while at the Ocean Sciences Meeting, there will be support for file transfers. If you plan to do this, bring a backup of the presentation on alternate media, including CD-ROM, DVD, or USB storage device, in case there is a problem transferring the file from the laptop. The AV support personnel will attempt to transfer the file from a laptop to the network. This may include connecting a flash drive or external hard disk to the laptop, or configuring a network card. If you have a network card, bring it with you. Plan extra time in order to be certain the files can be transferred. Please make sure you have all power, video, and networking adapters.

  • Personal laptops cannot be used in meeting rooms while giving your oral presentation. You must load your visuals from the Speaker Ready Room.
  • Speaker Ready Room personnel are not responsible for your devices, i.e., memory cards, disks, laptops, etc.


  • You will be required to provide identification in order to submit your presentation and also to access it in the Speaker Ready Room.
  • Presentation media is returned to the speaker.
  • Floppy and CD/DVD drives on the computers are disabled so no presentations can be copied.
  • External storage devices will not function on the meeting room computers.
  • Cameras and video equipment are not permitted in the Speaker Ready Room

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Give Your Presentation.

  • Be considerate of other speakers and the audience by staying within your allotted time. The time allotted for your presentation includes 5 minutes for discussion and changeover to the next speaker. Session chairs will hold you to the allotted time. This is essential to ensure adequate time for questions and discussion as well as adherence to schedule.
  • Please discuss the material as reported in the abstract.
  • Prepare your presentation in advance so that your ideas are logically organized and your points clear.
  • Take time to rehearse your presentation. If your presentation runs longer than the allotted time, eliminate the least essential material and rehearse again.
  • Give an opening statement to acquaint the audience with the nature and purpose of the study. Speak slowly and clearly. Word choice should be simple: use active words and short sentences.
  • Use the public address system, and speak into the microphone and toward the audience. When using the microphone clipped to your lapel, it is difficult for the audience to hear if you turn your head away from the microphone. If you need to see what is on the screen, have copies at the podium.

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