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American Association for Public Opinion Research

First-Time Attendees/New Members Guide

AAPOR Annual Conference 2019 (Toronto, Canada):

A Guide for New(er) Attendees

Brought to you by the AAPOR Welcoming Committee (AWC), a committee of Membership and Chapter Relations (MCR), this guide is intended to provide helpful information about AAPOR and the upcoming annual conference for all AAPOR conference attendees, but particularly students, early career attendees, and those who are new to AAPOR, or are attending the conference for the first time. Don’t forget to also check out the Day-by-Day Guide that outlines the entire conference and highlights all the opportunities and activities!  This guide will be updated regularly, so be sure to keep checking back.  This guide is divided into six sections:


I. The AAPOR Welcoming Committee: Who We Are

II. Key Info: Students and Early-Career Professionals

III. Practical Information about the AAPOR Annual Conference

IV. Conference Tips and Highlights

V. Searching for a Job or Internship at AAPOR

VI. All About Toronto

VII. Getting The Most Out Of Your AAPOR Membership


I. AAPOR Welcoming Subcommittee: Who We Are


The AAPOR Welcoming Committee (AWC) is a group of volunteer AAPOR members who serve on the larger Membership and Chapter Relations Committee (MCR). MCR is responsible for recruiting and retaining AAPOR members, analyzing and reporting on membership trends, and serving as the liaison between the national AAPOR organization and the regional chapters (we have more about regional chapters later in this guide).


This AWC was set up to assist new(er) attendees/members, students and early career professionals in getting the most out of their AAPOR membership and to help these folks become AAPORites (aka AAPOR insiders and folks who routinely renew membership and attend conference). We have planned several activities leading up to and during this year’s conference to give you the chance to meet and interact with other conference attendees, and learn more about the benefits of AAPOR membership and how to get the most out of your conference experience.


AWC Members

Below are pictures and quick bios of our subcommittee’s members. Most of us will be at the conference, so feel free to look for us, ask questions, or just say hi! Our email addresses are also included below in case you want to reach out with questions before the conference.



Justine Bulgar-Medina (bulgarmedina.justine@norc.org) is Research Scientist at NORC and presently serves on the Membership and Chapter Relations Committee as the Chair of the Welcoming Subcommittee and as a member of the Diversity Subcommittee.  Additionally she serves as the Associate Chair of the Conference Support Committee. She has a Ph.D. in Sociology and a Graduate Certificate in Survey Methodology from the University of Massachusetts-Boston.  Her present work focuses on labor/workforces studies and the measurement of social identities, with a focus on multiple minorities (e.g. race/ethnicity & sexual orientation). Justine also teaches in the Masters program in Public Policy at Northwestern University.  


Holly Hagerty (hagerty-holly@norc.org) is a Statistician at NORC at the University of Chicago. She received her Master’s degree from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy along with a certificate in survey methodology. She works on sampling and statistical tasks for the Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey and other projects at NORC.

Patrick Habecker (phabecker2@unl.edu) is a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He received his PhD in Sociology with a minor in Survey Research & Methodology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2017. He studies substance use, methods for hidden populations, and social networks.  

Fiyin Adesina (fadesina@justcapital.com) is a Senior Manager of Survey Research at JUST Capital in New York City. She received her MA in Human Development and Social Intervention from NYU, and a Bachelor of Psychology (Honors) from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. She works on the polling team designing surveys, and, analyzing and synthesizing public opinion data  as it relates to corporate fairness and just business behaviors and activities. She is part of NYAAPOR and currently serves on the AAPOR Welcoming Subcommittee.

Kristin Dwan (dwan-kristin@norc.org) is a Research Analyst on the Behavioral and Economic Analysis and Decision-making (BEAD) team at NORC at the University of Chicago. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology with a concentration in analysis and research and Environmental Studies in 2016 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She plans to pursue a Master’s degree in Research Methods and Statistics at the University of Denver in the fall. Kristin is also a member of the AAPOR Conference Support Committee.

Rachael Allen (rallen@rti.org) is a Survey Specialist at RTI International. She received her Master’s degree in Sociology from East Tennessee State University in 2014. Rachael works on two nationally implemented surveys that study patient’s experience of care and quality of care in home health and outpatient settings. She also works on a survey that determines how well health centers funded under section 330 provide access to primary and preventive health care. Her research interests include mental health, substance abuse, and public health and survey methods.   

Benjamin Schapiro (schapiro-benjamin@norc.org) is a Senior Research Analyst at NORC. He received his MA from the University of Chicago in 2014. Benjamin mostly works on the General Social Survey, as part of the team which helps move raw data to the final product you all know and love. He is also involved with international opinion data via the ISSP, particularly around religion. Recently, he has begun to research the benefits and drawbacks of data collection via Experience Sampling Method.

 Pia Peltola (ppeltola@air.org) is a principal researcher for the Survey and Data Sciences group at American Institutes for Research.  She provides ongoing content and technical support for projects on various survey-related issues, including questionnaire design, focus groups, cognitive interviews, study design and data collection on different modes, analysis, and reporting. Pia is also a member of AAPOR’s Transparency Initiative Coordinating Committee. She earned her doctoral degree in sociology with from University of Maryland, College Park.

Renee Stepler (renee.stepler@gmail.com) is a Survey Statistician at the U.S. Census Bureau where she works on survey operations for the National Sample Survey of Registered Nurses and the National Survey of Psychiatrists. She also serves as the Secretary/Member Chair of DC-AAPOR and is a member of the Online Education Subcommittee. Renee has her M.A. in Sociology.

Qianyin (Yin) Huang (huang-qianyin@norc.org) is a Senior Data Analyst at NORC at the University of Chicago. She received her Master’s degree in Survey Methodology from the University of Michigan.  She works on data management and panel operations researches for the AmeriSpeak Panel.

Erin Fordyce, M.S., MEd (fordyce-erin@norc.org) is a Research Methodologist with NORC at the University of Chicago. She is also a PhD student in the Research Methodology program at Loyola University Chicago.  Her work focuses on web and multimode data collection and innovative methods such as social media recruitment. Her projects often involve targeting hard-to-reach populations (e.g., sexual and gender minorities, cancer survivors). She is currently co-authoring a book with Dr. Michael J. Stern on web survey design.

Cailey Munana (caileym@kff.org) is a Research Assistant on the Public Opinion and Survey Research Team at the Kaiser Family Foundation. She joined KFF in 2017 after graduating from the University of Virginia with her Masters in Public Health in 2017 and her BA in Spanish and Global Public Health in 2016.

Emily Geisen (egeisen@rti.org) is a survey methodologist and manager of the Cognitive & Usability Lab at RTI International. She recently authored the book Usability Testing for Survey Research. She also teaches a graduate course on Questionnaire Design at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.  She is the 2018-2019 Chair of the AAPOR Membership and Chapter Relations Committee. She specializes in question design, survey pretesting, and surveys of physicians. She received her Master's degree in Survey Methodology from the University of Michigan.

Tamara Terry (tterry@rti.org) is a Senior Research Manager at RTI International with 15 years of experience in project management and survey research. Tamara currently manages the research department within the Division for Research Services and is involved in supporting and developing proposals. She provides higher level management and support for study design, strategic project planning, and all additional aspects of data collection management. Throughout her career she has worked on federal, state and foundation research projects across a wide range of topics including education, health, clinical, social welfare and registries. She is the 2019-2020 Chair of the AAPOR Membership and Chapter Relations Committee and serves on AAPOR’s Diversity Coordinating Committee.


II. Activities That Will Benefit New Attendees, Students, & Early Career Members


There are several programs and events leading up to and during the conference that we want to make you aware of. Some of these are geared specifically to students and early career members; others are aimed at new AAPOR members and first-time conference attendees more generally.


Before the conference:

  • Sign up to be a volunteer at the conference!: There is no better way to get acclimated to AAPOR and begin your professional networking than to volunteer at the conference.  The time commitment is minimal (only and hour or two) but it’s an unparalleled opportunity to meet people! You can sign up when you register, or you can email Justine Bulgar-Medina (bulgarmedina-justine@norc.org) to sign up.
  • First-time Conference Attendee Videos: The MCR and Conference Committees will host a webinar for new members and first-time conference attendees to give you more information about the benefits of AAPOR membership and what to expect at the conference. If you’re a new member or this is your first AAPOR conference, look for an email with details about this webinar in coming weeks.  Additionally, there are several additional opportunities to learn more about the conference including Webinars and Twitter discussions - see the main AAPOR site for more information and to access these materials.
  • Speed Networking: You’ll receive direct correspondence from AAPOR headquarters to sign up in the weeks prior to the conference.
  • Docent Program: Another great program offered to our new attendees at conference in our docent program.  Docents are more experienced AAPOR members and conference attendees and are there to help welcome our new folks, answer any questions they may have, and be a friendly face at the conference.

There are a few ways to get to know our docents for 2019.  First, all new attendees will receive an email about two weeks before the conference introducing all of our docents to you, and inviting you to the “Meet Your Docents” mixer on Thursday afternoon.  No RSVP is required and attendance is highly encouraged! The other ways to get to know your docents is to look for the “AAPOR Welcoming Committee” buttons folks will be wearing, or the docent flags at the bottom of name tags.


Finally, during every AAPOR meal, docents will join other veteran AAPOR folks to host meal tables.  Just look for the reserved signs and join us in the banquet hall and get to know your fellow AAPORites!


Do you want to make sure docents can find you too?  Don’t forget to wear your “New to AAPOR” buttons and flags on your name badge.  See the registration desk with any questions or if you need a button/flag.


Are you interested in being a docent?  Any and all levels of experience are welcome and encouraged!  Email Justine Bulgar-Medina (bulgarmedina-justine@norc.org) to sign up.

  • The Roommate Matching Program:  The Subcommittee coordinates a Roommate Matching Program for all AAPOR members while conference registration is open.  The program helps conference attendees save money on their hotel costs by sharing their rooms with other attendees. You can find more information or sign up here: Roommate Matching Form.   This signup is also a great resource for finding alternatives to the conference hotel if needed, we’ve compiled a list of 10 alternatives within walking distance.
  • Social Media: Follow us on social media by following @NewToAAPOR and joining our Facebook page.

At the conference, for all new members:

  • Ongoing: AAPOR Booth: MCR committee members will be on hand at the AAPOR Booth (located near the Conference Registration) to welcome members, provide information about AAPOR membership, and generally offer a friendly face. We encourage you to stop by the booth as soon as you’ve finished at the registration desk to connect with us!


  • Wednesday @7PM: Welcome Dinner: Arriving extra-early for short courses or just for extra AAPOR fun? Meet and mingle with other folks who are new to AAPOR. Meet in the hotel lobby at 6:45 and we’ll head off for dinner.  Remember, only the four AAPOR meals included with your registration are paid for, the rest of these meetups are paid by you, so have payments handy. RSVP’s help us ensure nobody is left behind - you can RSVP here!


  • Thursday @ 11:30: Welcome Lunch: Arriving early? Meet and mingle with other folks who are new to AAPOR. Meet in the hotel lobby at noon and join us in the hotel restaurant for a three course prix fixe informal lunch (remember, only the four AAPOR meals included with your registration are paid for, the rest of these meetups are paid by you, so have payments handy).  The menu will have options for all and cost about $30 per person. RSVP’s help us ensure nobody is left behind - you can RSVP here!
  • Thursday @ 3:30: Meet the Docents: The Docent Program is geared toward welcoming new AAPOR members  to AAPOR and our research community. Docents are AAPOR volunteers who help us welcome and make that special  connection with new members . The goal of the program is not only for docent volunteers to be another ‘friendly face’ that new(er) members see in the conference lobby but also to build lasting connections that continue beyond the conference and into future AAPOR conferences. Email Justine Bulgar-Medina (bulgarmedina-justine@norc.org) for more information.
  • New Member/All-Chapter Welcome Mixer Reserved Tables:   If you’re newer to AAPOR and/or looking to meet other students and early career folks (or just want to have people to sit with), join us at our reserved tables in the main dining room.  You can RSVP, or just show up. As always, look for the meetup sign!
  • Thursday Evening - New Member/All-Chapter Welcome Mixer: This reception, held on Thursday evening of the conference, provides new members a chance to mingle with long-time AAPORites and gives all members the chance to meet and greet with representatives of AAPOR’s regional chapters, as well as learn about exciting chapter initiatives and events. Don’t forget your business cards as you mix and mingle at this business professional event (plus more chances to win great regional prizes)! If you’re new to AAPOR, or just want to meet other AWC folks and some members from the AWC Committee, join us for dinner at our reserved tables in the main dining room. Just look for the signs!


  • Reserved Lunch Tables: Join us again in the main dining space for the AAPOR lunch, just look for the reserved tables!
  • Off-site Dinner Meet-Up and (Not-to-be-missed) After-Party: Calling all students, early career folks or new(er) members! Join other us for a meet-up dinner off-site, along with members of the AWC. We’ll meet in the lobby by 5:45 p.m. and head off for dinner at 6:00 p.m. Following dinner, we will all head over to the off-site officially unofficial chapter-hosted party.  It’s a blast and a highlight of attendance, not to be missed! Don’t forget to RSVP here!  


  • Reserved Lunch Tables: Join us again in the main dining space for the AAPOR lunch, just look for the reserved tables!
  • President’s Reception and Awards Dinner Banquet, Plus After Party: Saturday May 18, 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. Join all attendees for a more formal dinner (business or party formal, not black tie formal) and an evening of fun to end the conference!

More Fun Stuff at Conference:

  • Annual AAPOR Golf Outing: Thursday

If you love to golf, make plans this year to arrive early enough to play a round during the Annual AAPOR Golf Outing before the annual conference begins. The annual outing will be held on Thursday, May 16.

  • Fun Run/Walk: Saturday

If you like competition, or just want a good workout while at the conference, the Fun Run/Walk is for you. This annual event happens early on Saturday morning.  All AAPOR conference attendees are welcome to participate, and prizes are awarded to the fastest runners and walkers.


III. Practical Information about the AAPOR Annual Conference




Travel and Hotel

This year’s conference takes place at the Sheraton Centre Toronto hotel in Toronto, Canada.  While most people will stay at the conference hotel, to make the most of the many sessions and activities offered, if you stay off-site it’s advisable to stay within a quick walking distance so you don’t miss out on anything!



The AAPOR conference website at has the latest information about the conference, including information about room availability, alternate hotels in the area, and travel options.  Don’t forget about signing up for roommate matching as well, if you’re looking for a way to reduce costs of attendance.


Your registration packet will have maps of the hotel conference rooms that AAPOR will be using during the conference. AAPOR also has signs, either electronic or posters on easels, for every room, as well as conference volunteers who can help direct you where you are going. The conference app is also a great resource for electronically accessing the conference program, finding rooms, and getting other AAPOR-conference information. More information about the hotel and travel can be found on the AAPOR website.


How to Dress

The conference program states that dress at the conference is “business casual,” though actual attire worn by attendees often ranges from casual (shorts and polos) to formal (suits and ties - particularly among those who are presenting). People tend to “dress up” more for the President’s Reception and the Awards Banquet on Saturday evening (ties and cocktail dresses). Also note that while average high temperatures in Toronto in May are usually in the mid-60s ℉, the weather can vary significantly. Hotel meeting rooms can be quite cool, so you may want to bring a sweater or jacket regardless of what the weather is in Toronto during your time there.


Food at the Conference

Another great part of AAPOR is the food. On Friday and Saturday mornings, the conference provides a continental breakfast of pastries, coffee, tea, and juice available in the Exhibit Hall, where we also have refreshment breaks during the morning and afternoon. This is a great time to casually network with other AAPOR attendees and visit booths and exhibits in the hall before sessions begin for the day.


Several meals are also included with your conference fee, including lunch on Thursday and Friday. Dinner is provided on Thursday and on Saturday night during the Awards Banquet. There is no assigned seating during lunch and dinner, so many AAPOR members take this opportunity to sit with colleagues they do not often see or to meet new colleagues from different organizations.  However, we do have reserved seating just for new(er) members, students and early-career professionals, so join us!


Friday night traditionally is open for AAPOR conference attendees to dine out. The AWC is organizing an informal meet-up for dinner away from the hotel on Friday night to give you a chance to meet other conference attendees and network apart from the conference.


The hotel also has many restaurants on site, so there are definitely plenty of options.


IV. Conference Tips and Highlights


Presentation Sessions

The AAPOR annual conference has hundreds of presentations and posters on research conducted by AAPOR members and others. AAPOR will post a preliminary program online, and the final program will include a full list of presentations, authors, and abstracts and will be posted on the website during the first week in May and provided in hard copy at the conference. To begin planning, you can again reference the Day-by-Day Guide.


The sheer volume of presentations can be daunting, and we encourage first-time attendees to look through the final program before arriving at the conference to identify the sessions, papers, and posters that may be of particular interest to you. Presentations and posters cover a variety of fields, including survey research methods, health care, politics, economics, education, public policy, and many others. Many AAPOR attendees divide sessions into two types: those that focus on public opinion and those that focus on research methodology. You may get the most out of the conference by planning to attend both types of sessions, regardless of your research interests, since the conference is a good place to learn something new.


AAPOR presentation sessions generally consist of 4-5 papers presented by different authors. AAPOR sessions are led by a single facilitator/moderator that is intended to introduce authors, keep track of time, summarize themes of the session and offer feedback to the authors, and help moderate audience discussion. This role is not quite to the level of discussants who often would prepare a full presentation summarizing their feedback on the research presented, but intended to help kickstart the conversation.


It is acceptable to “float” between rooms during sessions if you want to hear one paper in a given session and another in a session taking place at the same time; just be courteous by sitting on the aisle or near the back of the room and try not to leave in the middle of a presentation. Also, we encourage you to ask questions of the presenters at the end of the session or to ask for a copy of the presenter’s paper or slides, which they can usually email to you during or after the conference.


Poster Sessions

Poster sessions are more informal than presentation sessions. There are three poster sessions during the conference, one each on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Poster presenters set up their posters in the Exhibit Hall and talk about their research as attendees look at the posters during the poster session time. At the same time in the Exhibit Hall, several events will be going on including demonstration sessions of products from companies attending the conference and snack or dessert breaks. Like session presentations, we encourage you to ask questions of the poster presenters as well as for copies of their papers when you are interested in knowing more about their research.


Short Courses

We would be remiss not to mention the short courses available at the AAPOR annual conference. The short courses occur throughout the conference, and are led by subject experts in the field. The short courses are not only an opportunity to learn more specific information about a topic of interest to you and your research, but they are also an opportunity to meet leading experts in the field and ask questions about the short course subjects. Short courses are not part of the conference registration, so there is a separate registration for those. You can see the short courses available for this conference at AAPOR Short Courses.


Other conference events

Want to know more about what goes on “behind the scenes” at AAPOR? The AAPOR Membership and Business Meeting on Saturday is a great chance for students and early career professionals to learn more about how AAPOR works and to hear about the association’s recent accomplishments and future initiatives. All members are encouraged to attend and to ask questions and exchange ideas with members of AAPOR’s Executive Council and other leaders in the association.


Tweet your conference experience!

Many AAPOR members (those attending the conference as well as those not attending) make use of Twitter during the conference to share interesting tidbits of information they pick up, offer opinions on happenings at the conference, pose questions, or announce events. If you are a Tweeter, join the conversation using hashtag #AAPOR! There will also be an electronic Twitter board at the conference where you can read what others are posting.


V.  Searching for a Job or Internship at AAPOR

The AAPOR conference is a great opportunity to search for a job or internship, or to make professional connections that could lead to a job or internship.  It helps to be prepared in advance, so we’ve organized some helpful tips from members who have successfully found jobs and internships through their connections at the AAPOR conference.


Preparing for the Conference

Prior attendees who have conducted job and internship searches at the conference suggest you prepare a few things before you leave for the conference:

  1. Create a résumé or curriculum vita (CV) and/or business cards to give out to interested conference attendees. It helps to look at example layouts and ask for feedback about these from people you trust. Bring 15-20 professional copies of your resume/CV with you, and even more business cards.
    • Don’t have business cards? Here’s a tip! Use a local (e.g. Staples) or online company (e.g. VistaPrint) and have ‘networking’ cards made up consisting of your: full name, phone number, email address, degree awarded/in progress (if applicable) and maybe even your tagline (e.g. “CATI Expert Seeking New Opportunity”). You can even put skills or other quick facts on the back!
  2. Prepare a short (1-2 sentence) summary of your academic program, prior training, work experience, and your particular interests and goals. Be aware of what you have to offer that might set you apart, and be able to frame it in a way that would benefit a potential employer. Keep in mind that employers don’t hire people in order to help them further their career; they hire people in order to solve problems or meet challenges within their organization. Note that the larger employers may ask you for your specific interests or goals, your salary requirements, or the position level you believe you are best suited for.
  3. Know who will be at the conference ahead of time, and do some research on organizations you may be interested in. Some organizations will send recruiters for speed networking or interviewing sessions, and others will simply have a booth presence or employees attending the conference. Most recruiters would like to see that you are familiar with their organization, and some will expect you to know their organization’s activities at AAPOR. For instance, one recent graduate reported that she had been asked which presentations by people at a certain organization she had attended and been most interested in.

A lot of information about who will be at the conference is available on the AAPOR conference website.  Some of the information that may be useful in your search includes:

  • Career Center:  Before leaving for the conference, take a look at AAPOR’s Career Center.  This resource is available year-round for AAPOR members to search for internships and jobs.  Knowing what positions are available before going to the conference can help you target the organizations and jobs that most interest you in your networking efforts.
  • AAPOR Conference Program:  The conference program provides information about the sessions and speakers, including their organizational affiliation and the topic of their paper, to help you figure out which papers you may want to see.  The program also contains names of sponsors, which are organizations and individuals that have provided resources for the conference. Many of these organizations will have booths and/or will participate in the networking sessions at the conference, so these are good organizations to find out more about their open positions and the research projects they work on.
  • Resources for Researchers:  The resources for researchers available on the AAPOR website can help you determine what areas of public opinion research and survey methodology most interest you, which is a question you’ll likely be asked when you tell other conference attendees that you’re searching for a job or internship.  You can see the variety of fields that AAPOR members come from, and you can find out more about what individual members and their organizations research on this page.

Networking during the Conference

Many activities at the AAPOR annual conference are designed to allow conference attendees opportunities to connect with colleagues and make important professional connections.  Sometimes it may seem like the attendees already know each other because some AAPOR members come back to the conference year after year to reconnect with their colleagues. The connections that frequent attendees have are wonderful, but they can also leave you standing awkwardly on the sidelines.


New attendees can benefit from their existing educational and employment connections, their mentoring relationships, involvement with their local chapter, and by simply being bold and friendly. One tip for students and early career professionals: don’t be afraid to approach unfamiliar faces and strike up conversations, including with those who are senior in their fields. Most long-term AAPORites are thrilled to meet students and other new AAPOR members and learn about their research as well as share their own professional experiences.


The Exhibit Hall, Poster Sessions & Booksale are also a great way to mix and mingle, and meet professionals in the field. The Exhibit Hall includes booths from conference sponsors ranging from commercial survey vendors, to software providers, to academic research programs. In the afternoons on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, authors of newly released books will be available to talk about their books and other research. Many of the authors are faculty members who teach students and enjoy speaking with new researchers at the conference, so take the chance to introduce yourself and meet an author from the field.  


For job and internship seekers, a few activities at the conference may be of particular interest to you in your search:

  • Conference Networking and Social Activities:  The networking and social activities at the conference are a good way to meet new people and learn about their research interests and their work.  The conference has formal networking events like speed networking and also fun activities where you have a chance to talk to other AAPOR members, like the New Member and All Chapter Reception on Thursday evening, AAPOR Fun Run/Walk on Saturday morning, and post-banquet party on Saturday evening. Planning out your activities will help you get the most out of the conference. And don’t forget to participate in informal networking at the conference as well. Take advantage of meals, receptions, session breaks, and even the Exhibit Hall early in the mornings to meet new people.
  • Speed Networking: AAPOR organizes speed networking sessions specifically for jobseekers and recruiters to briefly connect. While these are not official interviews, it helps to take them as seriously as you would an official interview. The sign-up sheet comes out early in the conference and fills up quickly, so try to sign up as early as possible. When your appointment time comes, be sure to arrive early in case the recruiter is running ahead of schedule, dress professionally, have extra copies of your resume or CV ready, and be prepared to discuss the particular organization and the role within it that you are most interested in. Remember that interviews are an opportunity for you to learn more and see if you are interested, and not simply a showcase- no false advertising! Also keep in mind that you are likely to run into your interviewers later during the conference.
  • Conference Booths:  In the Exhibit Hall at the conference (see the conference program for a map), several organizations sponsor booths where they provide information on the studies and research they are conducting, products and services they sell, as well as job and internship opportunities that are available.  Many of these conference booth sponsors also participate in speed networking, although visiting their booths is a good way to meet multiple individuals from the organization and to find out what each of them does to get a better feel for the organization.

Although this list is not exhaustive, we hope the experiences of AAPOR members who have successfully found a job or internship at the conference will help you to make the most of your conference experience.


VI. Things to Know About & Do Around Toronto!


We’ve combed Guides to Toronto, talked to regular travellers and locals to bring you some suggestions for getting the most of your time in Toronto, when you have some free time from the conference.  This is also a great list to turn to if you’re looking for Friday night dinner plans, when no conference dinner is scheduled (although don’t forget to check out the many groups coordinating offsite dinners such as AWC and GAAPOR).  Keep checking back, as we’ll be updating this section as new and exciting information becomes available!


Quick links to food searches in Toronto and the conference neighborhood (Old Toronto)

    Eater’s 38 Essential Toronto Restaurants (some may require a taxi)

    Yelp’s recommendations for the Old Toronto neighborhood

    Timeout’s 20 Best Restaurants in Toronto (some may require a taxi)

    Google’s recommendations for best food in Old Toronto


If you are looking for ideas for what to do around Toronto we have found a handful of guides to help you out! Not all of these are walkable from the hotel, so be sure to check your distances.


Overview: New York Times ‘36 Hours’ Guide to Toronto: updated November 2016

    41 things to do in Toronto: updated November 2018

    20 best things to do in Toronto: updated November 2018


VII. Getting The Most Out Of Your AAPOR Membership


There are many ways to learn about the various benefits of AAPOR membership, and we encourage you to visit the AAPOR website, attend the new member welcome webcast (mentioned above), and stop by the AAPOR booth at the conference. Below are just a few highlights of AAPOR member benefits that may be of particular interest to students and early career professionals.  If you still have questions, please check out our FAQ’s page, or submit a question of your own!


Understanding the AAPOR Structure

AAPOR is an organization made up of its members, some of whom volunteer their time to help run both the organization and the conference. These hard-working (unpaid) volunteers can assume a position through just signing up to volunteer, being nominated/appointed and being elected. We also have a few awesome full-time people supporting us at Kellen, a professional organization management group. Below is a basic overview of the AAPOR organizational structure; for a more complete organizational chart of AAPOR, head here!


One of the best ways to network and find your group of professional friends within AAPOR is to start volunteering, both at the conference and with the organization generally.  You should definitely volunteer at the conference, and you can do so by signing up during your conference registration or using the event sign-up sheet above. Do you have a few hours to give per month, year round? Then consider signing up to be a volunteer on an AAPOR committee here!   




AAPORnet is a listserv for AAPOR members only. It offers a great way to ask questions about research and methodology, share ideas, see job postings, or just to gain insight into what leading professionals in the field are discussing. AAPORnet is also a useful place to ask questions and get information about the conference from those who have attended many times before.


Social Networks

Find AAPOR on Facebook. Be sure to “like” us and check back often for the latest updates. Facebook is also a great place to see who else is a member of AAPOR and/or will attend the conference. Through Facebook, you can get to know other conference attendees in advance. Additionally, you can join other public opinion students and early career researchers and professionals on Facebook.


AAPOR is also on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is great for job-seekers as well as those looking to network or to post and answer questions about public opinion research, market research, and the like. Some of AAPOR’s chapters also have their own LinkedIn groups, so look up your local chapter!


‘Unofficial’ AAPOR Groups

Public Opinion Student and Early-Career Researchers & Professionals

GAAPOR (LGBT AAPORites & Friends)

AAPOR - Sócios



AAPOR offers webinars on a broad range of research topics. This is a great way to learn new skills and information right from your home or office. For students who are members of AAPOR, participation in most live webinars costs only $15. For more information on upcoming webinars or to purchase recordings, see the AAPOR Webinars page.


Public Opinion Quarterly (POQ)

Your AAPOR membership includes a free subscription to Public Opinion Quarterly (POQ), including hard copy and online access. Published since 1937, POQ is among the most frequently cited journals of its kind and is rated in the top ten scholarly journals in communications, political science, and interdisciplinary social sciences. POQ selectively publishes important theoretical contributions to opinion and communication research, analyses of current public opinion, and investigations of methodological issues involved in survey validity including questionnaire construction, interviewing and interviewers, sampling strategy, and mode of administration.


Journal of Survey Statistics and Methodology (JSSAM)

AAPOR has a new interdisciplinary journal to be published in conjunction with the American Statistical Association (ASA). The purpose of JSSAM is to publish cutting-edge articles on statistical and methodological issues for surveys and censuses. It also publishes empirical and theoretical papers as well as applied papers and review papers. In addition to POQ, AAPOR members receive a free subscription to JSSAM.


Survey Practice

Survey Practice is AAPOR’s e-journal. It provides current information on issues in survey research and public opinion useful to survey and public opinion practitioners, new survey researchers, and those interested in survey and polling methods. Check it out at http://www.surveypractice.org/index.php/SurveyPractice.


Regional Chapters

A great way to learn more about AAPOR while connecting with a smaller group of professionals in your own geographic area is to get involved with one of AAPOR’s seven local chapters. Most chapters hold their own local events, ranging from two-day conferences, to short courses and workshops, to happy hours and networking events. Chapters charge an additional fee for membership beyond the AAPOR membership fee, but for students these fees are small (all are under $20), and like AAPOR, many offer students their first year of membership for free.


You can learn more about the chapters by visiting the individual chapter websites and Facebook pages:

    Midwest (MAPOR):  www.mapor.org & Midwest Association for Public Opinion Research


    Pennsylvania-New Jersey (PANJAAPOR):  www.panjaapor.org & PA/NJ Association for Public Opinion Research


    New York (NYAAPOR):  www.nyaapor.org & NYAAPOR - New York Association for Public Opinion Research


    Pacific (PAPOR):  www.papor.org


    Southern (SAPOR):  www.sapor.us & Southern Association for Public Opinion Research (SAPOR)


    Washington, D.C.-Baltimore (DC-AAPOR):  www.dc-aapor.org & DC-AAPOR


    New England (NEAAPOR) : neaapor.org & New England Association for Public Opinion Research


Don’t forget that you can always stop by the

AAPOR booth or the registration table to see a friendly face or ask advice!

See you in Toronto!

Sustaining Sponsors


Platinum Sponsors

Headway in Research

Gold Sponsors

ABT Associates
Civis Analytics
Langer Research
Marketing Systems Group

Silver Sponsors

The Logit Group
Oxford University Press

Bronze Sponsors

International Experience Canada


Adapt, Inc.
American Association of Nurse Practitioners
American Institutes for Research (AIR)
ASDE Survey Sampler
Canadian Viewpoint
College Pulse
Data Independence
Data Recognition Corporation
G3 Translate
I/H/R Research Group
Market Xcel Data Matrix Pvt. Ltd.
Michigan Program in Survey Methodology
Opinion Access LLC
Random Dynamic Resources
Reconnaissance Market Research
Roper Center
Scientific Telephone Samples
Swift Prepaid Solutions
University of Maryland, Joint Program in Survey Methodology

Notice to Federal Employees

The Annual AAPOR Conference conforms to the OPM definition of a “developmental assignment.” It is intended for educational purposes; over three quarters of time schedule is for planned, organized exchange of information between presenters and audience, thereby qualifying under section 4101 of title 5, United States Code as a training activity. The AAPOR Conference is a collaboration in the scientific community, whose objectives are to provide a training opportunity to attendees; teach the latest methodology and approaches to survey research best practices; make each attendee a better survey researcher, and; maintain and improve professional survey competency.