Session Chair Guidelines

Thank you for agreeing to serve as a session chairperson!
This is an essential leadership role which streamlines session continuity and improves the overall delegate and presenter experience on the day.

Click on the below headings to see tips to help you prepare.

Check the online program to confirm your session date, time and location.


The session is the full-time slot between one break and the next (e.g. all consecutive presentations from the end of morning tea until lunch).

You must start and end on time to avoid impacting other sessions and activities in the program!

Review the presentation abstracts and speaker BIOS and develop a 1-2 sentence introduction for each speaker.

Familiarise yourself with the layout/equipment.

Arrive 15 mins before the session starts and confirm the speaker has uploaded their presentation.

If your speaker is a “no show” do not change the session times, use the time for questions/discussions.

Start and end on time! Don’t wait for anyone!

Make any housekeeping/program updates if these have been provided.

Introduce the speaker via the lectern microphone.

If presenters use all their time, there is no time for questions. Otherwise, ask for questions – kickstart with your own if needed.

Got issues? AV technicians are on hand to help!

Take a quick headcount of the audience.

Thank every speaker via the lectern microphone.

Handout any gifts if required.

Highlight other sessions related to the speaker or topic and encourage people to attend.