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Paper Presenter Information

2010 AAPOR Conference

May 13-16, 2010
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile
Chicago, Illinois


As the primary presenter, please relay the following information to your co-authors as needed.

Delivering Papers to Chairs and Discussants:  
All paper sessions have a chair, and most sessions with fewer than five papers have a discussant.  The chair and discussant (if applicable) must receive copies of your paper/presentation materials no later than May 1, 2010.  Contact information for discussants was provided in the email notification. Please consider your discussant’s responsibilities and forward your paper as soon as possible.

Session Times: 
Each concurrent session will be 90 minutes long. To increase interaction and discussion in conference sessions, the number of presenters has been limited to five individuals (including discussants). Only sessions with fewer than five papers will have discussants.

All discussants are given 10 minutes for their remarks, and 15 minutes should be allotted for questions from the floor at the end of each session. The remaining time should be divided equally among all presenters (approximately 15 minutes each).

"Methodological Briefs" provide the audience with the opportunity to be exposed to a larger number of research reports than in the typical session. If you are presenting a Methodological Brief, your presentation time frame will be shorter.  Plan on a 10 minute presentation of your findings. This may be adjusted based on the total number of Methodological Briefs in your session.

Audio-Visual Equipment

Each presentation room will have the following equipment available:

  • Laptop computer equipped with Microsoft PowerPoint and other Microsoft Office programs, a CD/DVD drive, 3.5" disk drive and USB port
  • Projector and screen
  • Lectern microphone
  • Wired clip-on lapel microphone

Presenters who plan to use PowerPoint and the data projector must bring their presentation on a flash drive or CD-ROM to the AV Technician at the Registration Desk area 24 hours prior to their session or earlier.  The presentations will be loaded onto the computer in the designated meeting room. To avoid delays, presenters should be in the presentation room a minimum of 15 minutes before the start of the session.

Guidelines for Your Presentation
Below are some (sometimes humorous but always wise) suggestions on how to prepare a good oral presentation or poster for a conference. 

Suggested by former AAPOR President, Mark Schulman. 

General advice:

DO NOT READ your paper. Speak from notes, not a full written-out text of your paper. Presentations are so short that only the most important results of your work can be communicated. Identify the 3 to 5 most important ideas you want to convey, and concentrate on those. 

Use audio-visual aids when appropriate, but keep the following in mind:

  • Avoid presenting tables with many cells.
  • Make your print BIG: the overhead/slide must be read by people as far away as 50 feet from the screen.A very common mistake is to display tables directly from your paper without simplifying them and using a larger font so people beyond the first few rows can see it.
  • Present just a few important facts on each slide.
  • If you want to distribute handouts, bring at least 100 copies.Handouts are useful because they allow audience members to carry away your key points.

Keep to the time allotted to you in the session guidelines.  Rehearse your oral presentation to get a realistic sense of its timing.  When you run over, another panelist loses time for his or her presentation, or discussion is curtailed.

Watch for a signal from the chair that your allotted time is getting short or has been used up.  If the latter happens, wrap up your presentation immediately.

*  *  *  *  *  *

A Generic Conference Talk Outline

Mark D. Hill, Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison

April 1992; Revised January 1997

This conference talk outline is a starting point, not a rigid template. Most good speakers average two minutes per slide (not counting title and outline slides), and thus use about a dozen slides for a twenty-minute presentation.

Title/author/affiliation (1 slide)

Forecast (1 slide)
Give gist of problem attacked and insight found (What is the one idea you want people to leave with? This is the "abstract" of an oral presentation.)

Outline (1 slide)
Give talk structure. Some speakers prefer to put this at the bottom of their title slide. (Audiences like predictability.)

Motivation and Problem Statement (1-2 slides)
(Why should anyone care? Most researchers overestimate how much the audience knows about the problem they are attacking.)

Related Work (0-1 slides)
Cover superficially or omit; refer people to your paper.

Methods (1 slide)
Cover quickly in short talks; refer people to your paper.

Results (4-6 slides)
Present key results and key insights. This is main body of the talk. Its internal structure varies greatly as a function of the researcher's contribution. (Do not superficially cover all results; cover key results well. Do not just present numbers; interpret them to give insights. Do not put up large tables of numbers.)

Summary (1 slide)

Future Work (0-1 slides)
Optionally give problems this research opens up.

Backup Slides (0-3 slides)
Optionally have a few slides ready (not counted in your talk total) to answer expected questions. (Likely question areas: ideas glossed over, shortcomings of methods or results, and future work.)

Contact Information

If you have any questions, contact Barbara Gunderson at or +1-847-205-2651.



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