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Information for Presenters

Thank you for sharing your expertise at UPA 2008. We have complied an array of resources that will help you prepare for your presentation at UPA. You can use this as a checklist when preparing your presentation. We have included the following:

Key Deadlines

March 30, 2008

February 26 - June 8, 2008


Guidelines for Effective Presentations

Based on feedback from the most successful UPA presentations, we would like to make some suggestions for increasing presentation effectiveness. These recommendations are directly from attendees’ ratings and remarks on session evaluations. We acknowledge that many presenters are very experienced and we hope these suggestions will be helpful to all presenters for optimizing presentations for the UPA audience.


Presentation Tips

  1. Attendee Involvement
    1. Plan Interaction
      1. UPA attendees favor presentations where speakers ask questions of the audience.
      2. Plan interactivity into your presentation in the form of practical exercises, Q&A or audience sharing of their relevant experiences and stories.
      3. Allow one-third of your overall time for sharing ideas, experiences, and issues, as a whole audience or in small groups.
    2. Provide Handouts
      1. UPA does not provide printed proceedings. Please be sure that you bring sufficient handouts for everyone in your audience. This would be approximately 250 copies for more popular presentations, and 150 copies for others.
  2. Slides
    1. Include a Presentation Overview Slide
      1. Project an initial "abstract" slide so attendees can read it as they enter the room. Include the following:
        • Your name and professional affiliation
        • Session title as it appears in the program
        • A goal statement of no more than 10-15 words that describes how your session content explores the conference theme and the topic of your track.
    2. Keep Slides Short and Easy to Read
      1. No more than five bullets on each slide
      2. Use large text
      3. Use a text color that contrasts well with the slide background color, such as black on white, or yellow on black
      4. Type that is lighter than the background should be sans-serif
      5. Avoid “light” or “book” type weights
  3. Speaking
    1. Speak Slowly, Simply and Clearly
      1. Make it easier for non-native English speakers to take meaningful notes and more fully understand all the content of your presentation.
    2. Finish on Time
      1. Finish your talk on time or early. Respect the break times. Some presenters think they are doing a service by giving a longer talk, however, breaks are planned carefully, and attendees expect and want them on time.
    3. Give Examples
      1. Pepper your own stories and examples throughout your presentation.
      2. Describe practical applications of your main points.
    4. Summarize Main Points
      1. Reprise your goal statement at the end of your talk and link your closing remarks directly to it.
      2. Plan time to close your presentation with a summary of your own main points that reflect the goal statement from the beginning of your session, including the most relevant points, ideas and issues raised through audience participation.
    5. Use Slides as a Tool
      1. Use your slides as a visual tool, and to remind you of main points.
      2. Do not read the text directly off your slides.
    6. Refer to Other Presentations
      1. Refer to points you heard during other presentations at UPA when appropriate. This helps promote a community feeling at the conference.
    7. Respect Other Usability Professionals
      1. Of course it is fine to cite and disagree with others’ work. However, it is not acceptable to denounce their work when they are not there to respond.
    8. Remind Attendees About Session Evaluations
      1. A volunteer will pass these out to attendees for you.
  4. Be Approachable
    1. Networking at the Conference
      1. Many attendees want reference materials and contact information to follow up with presenters after the conference. Bring your business cards.
      2. At the conference, you will be given a “speaker” ribbon to attach to your name tag. Please wear it so attendees who were at your presentation can find you more easily and to discuss your talk with you.

Authors Bring Your Books

If you have written a book, it can be offered for sale at the conference bookshop. Specific information will be provided at about two months before the conference.

Posters - Standard Sizing

The International Standards Organization (ISO) poster size format (A0). The dimensions for A0 format in portrait orientation are 84cm x 119cm or 33"x47". Either landscape or portrait orientation is acceptable while recommending the landscape orientation.

Preparing Materials for English-Speaking Audiences

UPA seeks to become a world-wide community. To accomplish this goal, we encourage submissions from those for whom English is a second language. At the same time, we recognize that a language barrier might prevent people from submitting their ideas to the UPA conference. To encourage more submissions from the English-as-a-second-language (ESL) community, UPA can provide mentors to assist with ESL issues during preparation of submissions. Please contact us at for more information.


If you have any questions, please contact the Conference Chairperson for your particular presentation type.