Moderator Guidelines

Your role as moderator is extremely important to the success of this conference. We thank you for taking this responsibility seriously and for the service you render our next generation of scholars.

For many of the presenters, and for a good portion of the audience, your session represents their first exposure to scholarly presentations in a conference environment. Therefore one main goal of a session moderator is to provide a professional atmosphere and training for undergraduate and high school presenters. To realize this goal, moderators should adopt the following: 

  1. Remind the audience that all presentations will be kept on schedule and begin at its individual time as posted in the conference program. This will allow each presentation to be synchronized across concurrent sessions. Thus, if for some reason a presenter cancels at the last minute, please wait to start the next presentation until its scheduled time. 
  2. Remind presenters that 12-15 minutes are allowed for each talk, followed by 3-5 minutes for questions. 
  3. Ask the audience to please adhere to conference etiquette by keeping their questions to the very end of each talk.
  4. Log in 10 minutes prior to the beginning of your session, allow entry of presenters from the waiting room, ask how best to pronounce presenters’ names, co-author's names, and faculty mentor's name at the time of introduction. If titles look challenging, ask for clarification in advance. Explain to presenters that you will message them using the chat feature in Zoom when there are 5 minutes, 3 minutes, and 1 minute remaining to help them finish on time. Shortly before the session start time, admit audience members from the waiting room, introduce yourself, and begin the session.
  5. Bring an accurate watch or timepiece to keep time.
  6. It is a good idea to read the abstract submitted by each presenter in your session, well in advance of the session's beginning. In the process, formulate one or two questions, as a back-up, should there be a lull at the end of the talk, with no question from the audience. Please use your questions as a back up so that the moderator does not dominate, but facilitates interaction with the audience. Note: submitted abstracts will be made available to session chairs, via email, at least one week prior to the conference.