Presentation Guidelines

Congratulations if you have been accepted to give a presentation this year at SWPA! The following information should help you prepare for the conference.  There is information below regarding each type of session, handouts, and audio-visual equipment.

General Program Organization

The SWPA Program Chair organizes the SWPA sessions so that they cover related topics, and decides on the number of SWPA sessions and their topics. Members submitting to give talks that cannot be accommodated into a session because of number or topic may be asked to change their submission to a poster format.

The SWPA Program Chair also works with the affiliate organization chairs to place their meeting sessions into the SWPA program at large.  The affiliate chairs decide on the number and type of their sessions and their topics for their meeting.


SWPA talks are given in sessions hosting 3-4 talks (45 minute time slots). Each talk is scheduled for 15 minutes, including time for questions. Talks for other affiliate organizations may be scheduled for different amounts of time (e.g. SWToP talks have 20 minutes each); check with the affiliate program chair. Presenters should plan to arrive at their scheduled session at least 10 minutes before the session starts so presentations can be loaded on a computer.

Each talk session will be assigned a session chair.  This person will help coordinate equipment set-up in the room (but is not responsible for providing the equipment), and will help ensure that the speakers do not continue past the allotted time period.

See the Audio-Visual policy for information about projectors and other equipment.

Posters Sessions

Poster sessions are held in a large room with many other posters. Poster sessions are organized by topic, but sessions often cover more than one topic for the sake of efficiency. Poster sessions last 45 minutes. We ask that authors are available in front of their posters for the majority of the assigned time period to discuss their work with interested attendees.

The specific times and poster board numbers at which presenters are scheduled to present their posters are indicated in the program. Presenters should check the program for their poster number and be sure to place their poster on the board with that number.

Additional Considerations:

  • Presenters must bring their own push pins with which to mount their poster materials.
  • The maximum size for posters is 48" (high) X 72" (wide).
  • Posters should include useful illustrations (e.g., tables, graphs, illustrative photos).
  • Posters should be easily readible from an approximate distance of 6 feet (i.e., using a font size of 20 to 30 or greater for primary texts).
  • No audio or visual are to be used for presentation.


Symposia are multi-member talks organized and assembled by submitters themselves. SWPA encourages members to create symposia. Symposia typically last a maximum of one hour. However, at SWPA 22 symposia have been scheduled to last 45 minutes. 


Workshops are sessions where SWPA members may receive instruction on a topic, technique, or innovation from other members or from invited workshop hosts. Workshops will be allotted either 1 or 1.5 hours. Presenters should relay their time length preference to the conference chair.

SWPA Student Research Competitions

All competition finalists will give an oral presentation of their project.  There will be separate paper sessions for the Graduate Student and Undergraduate Student Competitions. Each presenter will have 20 minutes to talk, plus an additional 5 minutes for questions. SWPA will have a computer and projector available for these sessions.  Please arrive to the session at least 15 minutes prior to the start of the first scheduled talk so that the moderator can organize the presenters and make sure everyone's presentation is loaded on the computer (if desired).

Presenters will be judged on the quality of their presentation as well as the original written submission. Winners will be announced (and checks distributed) at the business meeting on Saturday evening.

Other Types of Sessions

Information exchanges are informal sessions such as conversation hours, meals, social hours, business meetings, and other similar gatherings. The Program Chair schedules information exchanges and attempts to meet the time and space requirements desired. In no case will SWPA be responsible for providing food, drinks, cash bars, or other amenities typically provided by the hotel. Members seeking such amenities should ask the Program Chair for the contact information for the hotel's meeting staff.

For further information on submitting information exchanges, e-mail SWPA's Program Chair, Tom Faulkenberry ( 

Additional Considerations


As a courtesy to people who attend paper sessions, poster sessions, and symposia, presenters are encouraged to have handouts, formal papers, links, or QR codes available for distributing to interested attendees.

SWPA provides a Google Drive folder into which speakers may upload these handouts if they so choose. Attendees may access that folder and upload their handouts using a link posted to their account profile page.

Audio-Visual Policy

For those giving talks, SWPA will supply audio-visual equipment for each breakout session room. However, SWPA cannot guarantee that a computer will be available in each presentation room. Therefore, presenters will be expected to provide their own computers. Additionally, presenters are encouraged to have a copy of their presentation aids on a flash drive or some other similar device. If presenters have special needs beyond a projector, they should make their own arrangements with other presenters in their session and/or their Session Chair. SWPA Session Chairs and presenters can be found in the printed convention program, which will be available on site.

Internet Availability

SWPA cannot guarantee the availability of free internet access in all presentation rooms. For this reason, we encourage authors to make their presentations capable of being delievered without internet access.

Personal Belongings

The security and storage of any equipment brought to the meeting site are the sole responsibility of the individual bringing or renting the equipment for the meeting. SWPA is not responsible for the security and storage of equipment brought to the meeting site by private arrangement.

If presenters have any questions regarding this policy or need assistance procuring equipment, please contact

Conference Management Software by X-CD Technologies Inc.