Session Chair Info

General Information

On behalf of the Joint Technical Program Committee for the GSA 2020 Connects Online Meeting, we would like to express our sincere gratitude for your agreeing to serve as a session chairperson for the upcoming meeting. The success of the technical program relies to a large degree on efforts such as yours.

Session Chair Orientation

Please plan to attend a Session Chair Orientation on Zoom, hosted by Image AV, the company GSA is partnering with to host GSA 2020 Connects Online. (Learn more about the Connects Online platform.) These orientations are designed to assist session chairs with tips and to answer all questions in order to ensure their sessions are successful.

During the orientation, the Image AV tech assigned to your session will walk through the process for your sessions. They will also share information on when the camera will be shown, when the microphone will be turned on, how to interact with the audience. This is your time to ask any last-minute questions.

Plan To Attend a Session Chair Orientation

Review a summary of the Session Chair Orientation

21 October
12-12:45 p.m., EDT
Zoom meeting link
25 October
1-1:45 p.m., EDT
Zoom meeting link
26-30 October
8-8:45 a.m. (daily), EDT
Zoom meeting links:
26 Oct., Monday
27 Oct., Tuesday
28 Oct., Wednesday
29 Oct., Thursday
30 Oct., Friday

Guidelines for Successful Sessions

Pre-Session Preparation

  1. Meet the Image AV tech assigned to your session. The Image AV tech will be your personal contact for any possible issues during your session.
  2. Be familiar with the format for your sessions.
    • Most session chairs selected using the Option 1 format. These sessions will consist of recorded presentations, followed by live Q&A.
    • Basic time for the talk is 12 minutes. Most of the presenters have been given a 15-minute time slot, 12 minutes for presentation, and 3 minutes for Q&A. If the recording is longer than 12 minutes, this will take away from the Q&A time period.
    • As a session chair, if you selected to conduct your session using the Option 2 format, recorded presentations will not be shown. These sessions are 100% discussions. Please see information below.
  3. Read GSA's Events Code of Conduct. This policy applies to everyone who participates in GSA meetings and events. As a Session Chair, you play an important role in upholding this policy as detailed below.

Your Responsibilities During the Session

  1. Be sure to have your session close by and open on the GSA MeetingApp.
    • You will need to have the most up to date information available to you for announcing presentations.
    • The meeting app will have the most current information on any presenter who has withdrawn their presentation.
    • The meeting app has all the presentation times, and this will help you to keep your session on schedule.
  2. You will need two electronic sources (e.g., a computer and a smart phone or tablet) to follow along during the session.
    • All windows and programs must be closed on your computer with the exception of the Zoom meeting.
    • The second electronic source will be used to see presentations as they're shown and to view the chat feature where questions will be submitted.
    • During Q&A/discussions, your computer, with the Zoom meeting open, is what we will be using to bring you into the session to speak. We ask that you have all other programs closed.
  3. Start and end all presentations on time, keeping the entire session on time.
    • We ask this for the meeting attendees who have made a schedule and plan to watch specific presenters. GSA wants everyone to have a great meeting experience.
    • If a recorded presentation is longer than the presentation time (15 minutes for orals/10 minutes for posters), that presentation must be cut off, and there probably won't be time left for Q&A.
    • If a speaker fails to appear, do not pass to the next paper. Instead, call for a break or discussion until the scheduled time for the following presentation.
  4. Make announcements at the beginning of the session, if there is an introduction planned.
    • Microphones and cameras are turned off, with the exception of Session chairs and presenter.
    • This is an official GSA meeting, and everyone is expected to follow GSA Events Code of Conduct.
    • A chat box is available to ask questions and add comments.
  5. Manage the Q&A and discussion process. As session chairs, you set the tone for ensuring that your sessions are professional, respectful, and inclusive. Please take the following steps to make your session IS productive:
    • Before you start the Q&A process, remind participants that you look forward to a respectful, professional round of questions.
    • Review questions from the audience. Questions will be submitted through the Chat feature.
    • It is your responsibility to ask these questions from the audience to the presenter. Microphones will not be turned on for the audience to ask their own questions. The only microphones that are turned on will be your microphone and the presenters' microphone.
    • Be prepared to ask your own questions of the speaker. If time allows, encourage discussion after each paper. Please be prepared to ask your own questions of the speaker if there are no questions from the audience.
    • Watch for inappropriate questions, so you can avoid asking them. If you see a question that seems inappropriate under GSA’s Events Code of Conduct, move on to another appropriate question that advance the discussion in a professional way. It’s difficult to predict what such a question would look like, but never select any questions that appear discriminatory, harassing, bullying, or threatening.
  6. Monitor the chat box. Participants will have the opportunity to enter comments as well as questions in the chat box. GSA expects participants to enter professional, relevant, and appropriate comments, but we also want to be prepared in case participants say inappropriate things.
    • If you see an inappropriate or offensive comment in the chat box, please immediately post the following comment: “Please show respect and professionalism.”
    • If you see an inappropriate, unprofessional comment, please take a screen shot and notify the GSA's Ethics Office.
    • If you feel that a comment is particularly egregious, notify your Image AV tech for assistance in removing the person from your session.
    • For additional information on GSA’s commitment to ethics and tips on managing the chat box, please consider becoming a RISE Liaison. This process will take 15 minutes and requires you to review the RISE Liaison training video and survey.
  7. Notify GSA's ethics office if you need help or want to make a report. GSA is committed to making this meeting safe, respectful, and inclusive. If you see anything or have concerns during or after your session, let our ethics office know right away by emailing or calling +1-720-507-7523.

Additional Guidelines for Sessions Using the Option 2 Format (Discussions Only)

  • The following sessions will have discussions only during the technical session:
    D2; D22; T23; T31; T82; T147; T161; T165; T173; T176; T206; T210; T216; T221; T221; T244; T250
  • These sessions are set up for discussions only—no showing of recordings.
  • Please keep the discussions on topic, and engaging.
  • In this type of session format, presenters may be able to show a slide or two. If you would like to ask presenters in your session to prepare a slide prior to the start of the meeting, that would be appreciated.
  • Review GSA's Events Code of Conduct.
  • Get more information and see a list of the Option 2 Watch-in-Advance sessions.

RISE Liaison Training and Survey