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Presider Resources

3-Days Before Conference15 Minutes Before SessionStarting the SessionInstructional Video

We ask all presiders to check-in at least 15 minutes before your session begins.

At Least 3 Days Before the Conference — Session Planning

Perform these steps to ensure you are prepared for your session responsibilities.

  1. Confirm your acceptance of the assignment via the link in the email you received from Optica Management staff (
  2. Read the entirety of these instructions to familiarize yourself with the Session Presider Instructions.
  3. Review your session before the meeting via the Session Host tool in ScholarOne.
    • Click on Messages (New) in the upper right-hand corner.
    • Click on Invitations (New).
    • Under ACTION on the left, click on Select, then View & Respond.
    • Click the + next to Session Information.
  4. The session details will display the final order of presentation and total amount of time allotted for each presentation. You can also use the Online Schedule (Program Planner) or the event app for general session information. However, the email addresses for the speakers in your session is only available through the session host tool. 
  5. Contacting presenters in advance is encouraged so that you can obtain seed questions from them and encourage live participation. Follow step #3 above to obtain the presenter emails, or contact Optica Management staff if needed. 
At Least 15 Minutes Before the Session Begins

Presiders will be focused on conducting the session, introducing the speakers, and handling Q&A. 

  1. Arrive in your session room at least 15 minutes before the start of your session.
  2. Have the speaker order and time readily available, as it will assist you in running an effective session. You can access it either through the Online Schedule or the event app.
  3. If you have a question about pronouncing the names of any of the presenters, the title of the talk or the name of their institutional affiliation, ask prior to the start of the session. It can be quite embarrassing for both you and the speaker if you pronounce something wrong.
  4. Alert the speakers that you would like them to remain for the entire session. If time allows, you may go back to them between talks to ask questions that may not have been addressed earlier due to lack of time.
Starting the Session and Introducing Speakers
  1. Start the session with a few remarks. Introduce yourself and your affiliation, along with the theme of the session.
  2. Introduce the first speaker, and invite them to the podium to present.
  3. You will preside over the rest of the session from your designated table outfitted with a computer and microphone.
  4. During Q&A segments, please request that attendees make their way to the aisle microphone to ask questions. If they fail to do so, please repeat the question into your microphone. 
  5. For each presentation, announce the speaker's name, affiliation and the title of the talk.
  6. If a speaker has not shown up for the session, either allow a continuation of the discussion of any of the previous presentations or announce an intermission until the next scheduled paper. 

Please note that a room monitor is assigned to each room. The room monitor will track whether the author presented or was a no-show to the session.

Instructional Video

Please view our instructional video on how to preside over a session, presented by Ben Eggleton, University of Sydney, Australia. This video gives you a basic overview of best practices for a presider. 

Image for keeping the session alive