Presenter and Participant Information
Presenter and Participant Information

Program Changes Deadline

The deadline for program changes is March 10, 2015. This includes changes to paper titles, session titles, and authors, as well as Session Chairs and Discussants. Please submit changes to

Paper Specification and Upload Instructions

Paper Specification for Presentation in Paper, Poster or Roundtable

Authors of individual papers accepted for presentation in a paper, poster, or roundtable format must upload a final paper into the online Annual Meeting submission system. The paper should include any additional research findings and conclusions from the time of submission. The paper should address the elements required for submission in greater detail and should expand upon the initial 2,000 word paper. If you do not upload a final paper, the initial paper uploaded during the submission process will constitute the final paper. 

Note:  For poster participants, you only need to upload a final paper if you wish to have your paper included in the online paper repository. These guidelines serve to help you prepare your paper and are a suggestion only; your individual paper may follow another format. The parts of your paper may be arranged in this sequence: cover sheet, abstract, main text, reference list, appendixes, author note if any, endnotes, tables, and figures. It is usually easiest to group the tables and figures at the end, but they may be incorporated into the main text, each near the location where it is first mentioned. Page numbers should be included. There is no word limit for the final paper and papers may be as long as necessary. However, the time period allotted for presentation at the meeting will be determined by presentation format and/or session chair. Also keep in mind that you will want discussants to be able to read the paper without undue effort so that they can be well prepared for the session.

Presenters at roundtable and poster sessions are encouraged to bring copies of their papers or summaries of their projects to the session, as there will not be a screen and lcd to project your presentation in these types of sessions. The handouts will enable participants to discuss the topic more effectively.

Paper Specification for Presentation in Symposium, Structured Poster, Working Group Roundtable or Demonstration/Performance Session
All presenters in an accepted session (excluding any discussants) are required to submit a paper or commentary paper addressing central questions regarding the issue under consideration by the deadline for final paper submissions.
Please note that you only have the option to upload one paper for each paper title within the sessionYou do not have the option to upload one paper for the entire session. Papers or commentary papers for symposia are not limited in length but may be shorter than final full papers (e.g., 1,000 words). Commentary papers need to address all of the elements required for paper submissions:  

  • Objectives or purposes; 
  • Perspectives(s) or theoretical framework; 
  • Methods, techniques or modes of inquiry; 
  • Data Sources, evidence, objects or materials; 
  • Results and/or substantiated conclusions or warrants for arguments/point of view, and; 
  • Scientific or scholarly significance of the study of work.
Online Paper Repository
With the introduction of AERA’s online paper repository, authors have the option to locate their papers in the repository for future use and reference by researchers. The repository extends access to presentations at the Annual Meeting on a virtual online platform and provides for continuous scholar exchange. All authors may elect to have their papers, presentations or commentary papers included in the AERA online paper repository, and will be asked whether they wish to do so at the time of uploading their final paper. Authors of individual papers who made a selection during the initial submission process will have the option to change their selection if desired. 

Paper Upload and Online Repository Participation Instructions

Authors may upload papers into the AERA online system February 20 – March 26, 2015.
  1. Type into your web-browser.  Click 'Login' at the top of screen, and log in with your username and password.  Click ‘My AERA,’ scroll down to ‘2015 AERA Annual Meeting,’ and click on ‘Online Program Portal.'        
  2. Underneath the Submitter menu, click 'Upload Final Paper/Track Your Paper or Session Submission.'
  3. Scroll down on the page and you will see a tab that says ‘Submissions’ Click the link ‘upload’ located to the right of the title for the paper you wish to upload. You will see an Upload Final Draft Screen.    
  4. At the top of the page, click either 'yes' or 'no' to participate in the online paper repository.
  5. Upload your paper and click the 'Upload and Continue' button at the bottom right of the screen.
  6. If you need to upload a further revised paper before the March 26 deadline, follow the instructions above. You cannot edit the paper once it has been uploaded. Uploading a new paper will remove the old paper.

Poster Preparation Instructions

Click to view larger image.

Click to view larger image. 
General Considerations
Plan to set up your display 15 minutes before the session is to begin. The Annual Meeting Program will indicate the poster board number to which you have been assigned. The presenting author should be available throughout the session and be prepared to have his or her display removed no more than 10 minutes after the end of the session.

Your material should be mounted on poster board or cardboard. Avoid the use of heavy board, which may be difficult to keep in position on the poster surface. If it seems appropriate, it can be helpful to mount conceptually related portions of your display on backgrounds of the same color, as this will help viewers scan the display efficiently.

The poster should be as self explanatory as possible so that your main job is to supplement the information it contains. The poster format provides a mechanism for in depth discussion of your research, but this is possible only if the display includes enough information to have a sketch pad and drawing materials available to help you make you points. It is also strongly recommended that the author have available a number of copies (about 20) of the full paper to distribute to interested parties.

Arrangement of Materials
The poster surface is made of cork and measures 4' high x 6' wide. While some fasteners will be available, AERA cannot guarantee that there will be enough for all participants. It is up to the participants to make sure that they bring their own supplies with them.

A sign containing the paper title and the authors' name and affiliations should appear at the top of the poster. Keep in mind that all your text and illustrations will be viewed from a distance of more than three feet. All lettering should be at least 2/3" high, 1" for more important information, and preferably in bold font. Figures and tables should be kept as simple as possible, so that viewers can readily take away the main message. A brief large type heading of no more than one or two lines should be provided above each illustration, with more detailed information added in smaller type beneath the illustration.

A copy of your abstract (300 words or less) should be placed in the upper left portion of the poster, with a conclusion in the lower right hand corner. Although there is considerable room for flexibility, it is often useful to have panels indicating the aims of the research, the methods and subjects involved, and the experimental tasks. Another panel might highlight the important results, with a few panels being used to present the main points in tables or figures.

When working on the arrangement of your display on the poster, be aware that it is preferable to align materials in columns rather than rows. Audience members who are scanning posters have a much easier task if they can proceed from the left to right rather than having to skip around in the display. 

Presentation Guidelines

  • The presenter should prepare an outline of the major points of the paper.
  • The paper should not be read verbatim from the text. Not only are such presentation usually dull, but because of time constraints the author may be cut off by the session chair before reaching the most significant aspects of the presentation.
  • Presentations should represent on the average a 7-10 minute summary of the paper. Highlights may be given covering such points as the purpose of the study, description of the sample, methodology, problems, and major findings, conclusions, or recommendations. The amount of time devoted to each highlight will vary according to the author’s evaluation of the importance of each area to the paper.
  • Inexperienced extemporaneous speakers are advised to prepare a reading text of
    approximately 5 to 7 typed pages.

Roundtable and Poster Sessions

Poster Sessions – How to Find Your Poster Number
Your poster session number is the number following the dash in the session number listing in the online and print program and mobile app. For example, in the number 41.932-3, the poster session number is 3. Each poster in that session is also numbered. Your poster number is the number in front of your poster title.

Roundtable Sessions – How to Find Your Table Number
Your table number is the number following the dash in the session number listing in the online and print program and mobile app. For example, the table number is 7 for session number 52.078-7.

Roundtable Sessions – Guidelines
AERA is committed to providing an amenable environment for roundtable sessions. Based on feedback about noise and overcrowding, we have set the maximum number of tables in a room to less than half the maximum capacity of the room. As a participant or attendee in a roundtable session, your help in following these guidelines helps facilitate a better experience for all.

Roundtable numbers: Please do not remove the number in the stand on the table. Participants need the number to find their session table. 32 Navigating the Annual Meeting

Position of tables: Please do not move tables or table number stands around the room or outside the room. This disrupts the sessions that follow, as participants are unable to find their roundtables. Tables are placed as far apart as possible to allow maximum space, and additional chairs are available for participants.

Silent applause: Please do not clap after each presentation as this sound echoes across the room and drowns out the voices of other presenters. Silent applause—raising your arms and waving your hands—is encouraged.

Roles and Responsibilities of Chairs and Discussants

Chair Responsibilities

Chairs are responsible for the overall planning and execution of the session to facilitate the sessions’ success, as well as evaluation of the session. Responsibilities fall into the following three areas:

In Advance of the Session
  • Ensure that all presenters upload final papers no later than March 26th. As Chair, when you login to the online program you will be able to view author’s papers and email addresses for your session. 
  • Send an email to participants reminding them to upload their papers. This will reinforce the notification sent by AERA. For paper and roundtable sessions, the author’s initial submission may serve as the final paper if a revised paper is not uploaded. For all other session types, authors must upload a paper no later than the March 26 deadline.
  • Download and read the papers for your session after the March 26 deadline, in order to prepare comments and organize your thoughts. (Scroll down for instructions.)
  • Contact by email any discussants to ensure they have downloaded and read the papers and begin a conversation about shaping the session.
At the Session
  • Be mindful of accessibility of sessions and help AERA cultivate a universally accessible environment. As Chair of the session, attention to the recommended guidelines is greatly appreciated. For detailed information on the accessibility guidelines, please refer to the accessibility resources.
  • Open the session at the scheduled time and orient the audience to the context with a few brief introductory remarks. 
  • Make an announcement at the beginning and end of the session noting that, as part of the changes to enhance the quality of the meeting, attendees are asked to complete an evaluation form for a random sampling of sessions, should your session be chosen for inclusion. Chairs for these sessions are asked to pick up a packet of surveys while onsite at the meeting and distribute the evaluations at the session. Drop boxes will be available for attendees to return completed evaluations. We will be emailing you with further instructions prior to the meeting should your session be selected. 
  • Introduce the participants before their presentations.
  • Strictly limit time for each speaker and discussant. While chairs need to be attentive to time allocations, the role of chair is much more than keeping time. A session’s success may depend on the Chair’s ability to limit the time of presentations and temper discussion from the floor to allow sufficient time for interaction. 
  • Raise issues that can facilitate audience engagement and moderate panel or floor discussions.
  • Adjourn the session in time to allow the room to clear before the next session begins and remind the audience to complete the evaluation form (if application). 
After the Session
  • Complete an electronic survey that AERA will email following the Annual Meeting. All Chairs for all sessions will receive this electronic survey and are expected to complete it.

Chairing a Roundtable Session

If you are Chairing a roundtable session, your responsibilities are mostly similar to Chairing a paper session or symposium. However, since roundtable sessions are less formal than paper sessions, and emphasis is on interaction among the paper participants, you do not need to strictly limit the time for each speaker.  Rather, you will want to facilitate interaction and participation among the paper participants.  

Discussant Responsibilities

Discussants are responsible for commenting on papers and presentations to provide professional and constructive criticism and raise issues for broader consideration that connect to these works. Responsibilities fall into the following two areas:

In Advance of the Session
  • Download and read the papers for your session after the March 12 author paper upload deadline, in order to prepare comments and organize your thoughts. (Instructions on how to access papers are at the bottom of this email.)
  • Prepare appropriate analytical or critical commentaries on the significance and contribution of the papers presented in the session. You are under no obligation to comment on papers not uploaded in the online program. 
  • Connect with the session chair, who should have contacted you by email, to review the shape of the session and time constraints on the length of discussion.
At the Session
  • Serve as commentator about the papers and issues on substantive points pertaining to these works. It is expected that you draw upon your expertise and views in commenting on papers or presentations; however, it is not the appropriate occasion to present your work.
  • Provide comments on papers that will assist authors in taking steps toward publication in order to help authors minimize the time between presentation and publication. Such commentary may include remarks in the session, comments written directly on the papers, and/or discussions with the authors. 
  • Encourage authors to submit papers to the appropriate AERA journals.
How To Access Author’s Papers and Emails
Chair and discussants within paper sessions should follow the instructions below to access papers uploaded by presenters and authors for your session.  

  1. Visit  Click 'Login' at the top of screen and log in with your username and password.  Then click on ‘My AERA’ and scroll down to ‘2015 AERA Annual Meeting’ and click on ‘Online Program Portal’.  
  2. Underneath the Submitter Menu, click on Read your Reviews / Read Papers in Your Session.
  3. On the next page, scroll down to the participations tab.  You will see the session(s) for which you are serving as Chair and/or Discussant.   
  4. Click the view link to the right of the tile. You will see the session information including the participant’s emails and paper titles for the session.  
  5. Click on the ‘Download’ link in green lettering located next to each paper title to view the final paper upload. If there is no link associated with a paper title, it means that the author has not yet uploaded a copy of their paper.  If the author has not uploaded their final paper by the March 26 deadline, we will make their initial paper upload from during the submission process available to you.  

Session Formats, Room Set-ups and Audio Visual

Business Meeting

Format: All Divisions and SIGs must hold a business meting to conduct the business of their unit.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.


Format: Demonstration/Performance sessions are directed to using, showing, or illustrating a particular technique, tool, or method in order to convey the value of the approach for research or to illustrate or present understandings or findings through such a method.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.

Off-Site Visit

Format: Off-site visits offer participants site-specific learning, such as observation of a school in session. This format takes advantage of the unique attributes of the city in which the Annual Meeting is occurring and connects researchers with concrete examples of relevant work. Visits are to be spent at a site other than the meeting rooms, such as a school, museum, science lab, or community agency.

Room Set-up: Not applicable.

Audio Visual: Not applicable.

Paper Session

Format: In paper sessions, authors present abbreviated versions of their papers, followed by comments/critique, if there is a discussant, and audience discussion. A typical structure for a session with four or five papers is approximately 5 minutes for the chair’s introduction to the session, 10 minutes per author presentation, 20 minutes of critique, and 15 minutes of discussion. Session chairs may adjust the timing based on the number of presentations and discussants scheduled for the session. Individuals must be attentive to the time allocation for presenting their work in paper sessions. In the case of multiple-authored papers, more than one person may present, but multiple presenters are urged to be attentive to the total time available to them and to take steps to ensure that more than one speaker does not detract from the overall presentation of the work or others presenting their work.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.

Poster Session

Format: Poster sessions combine the graphic display of materials with the opportunity for individualized, informal discussion of the research throughout a 90-minute session. Individual presenters set up displays representing their papers in a large area with other presenters. Each poster session has roughly (60) posters.

Room Set-up: Poster boards.

Audio Visual: No audiovisual equipment, such as a screen or lcd projector, is provided. Authors wishing to display information may do so from their own laptop computer screens. If you plan to use a laptop, please be sure the battery is charged, as power source will not be provided. 

Roundtable Session

Format: Roundtable sessions allow maximum interaction among presenters and with attendees. Each table will have three to five researchers of accepted papers clustered around shared interests. Each roundtable at a roundtable session will have a designated Chair knowledgeable about the research area, to facilitate interaction and participation. Because the emphasis is on interaction, there will be no discussants. Each roundtable session will be scheduled for a 90-minute timeslot. Each roundtable session will have roughly 15 roundtables.

Room Set-up: The roundtable sessions will be in a large room and the tables arranged to maximize discussion and interaction. In each session, there are far fewer tables than in prior years to allow enough space between tables to accommodate more participants. Tables will start with 10 chairs, and additional chairs are available around the room to be readily added to popular roundtable discussions.

Audio Visual: No audiovisual equipment, such as a screen or lcd projector, is provided. Authors wishing to display information may do so from their own laptop computer screens. If you plan to use a laptop, please be sure the battery is charged, as power source will not be provided. 


Format: A symposium provides an opportunity to examine specific research issues, problems, or topics from a variety of perspectives. Symposia may present alternative solutions, interpretations, or contrasting points of view on a specified subject or in relation to a common theme. Symposia may also use a panel discussion format targeted at a clearly delineated research issue or idea. Symposia may also be quite interactive where a large portion of the session is devoted to activities such as discussion among the presenters and discussants, questions and discussion among all those present at the session, or small-group interaction.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.

Structured Poster Session

Format: These sessions begin with attendees viewing poster presentations, then moves into brief oral presentations to the audience gathered as a group followed by direct discussion with poster presenters. Posters are conceptually linked in terms of education research issues, problems, settings, methods, analytic questions, or themes.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium; Poster boards.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.

Working Group Roundtable

Format: Working group roundtables encourage substantive exchange and interaction among researchers working on a common set of research issues, problems, or themes. Participants in these sessions discuss areas that are cross-cutting, where there are shared research problems or issues that would benefit from cooperation and exchange, or where researchers with complementary interests would benefit from new, synergistic discussions.

Room Set-up: Large hollow rectangular table with the presenters on one end and all of the presenters and attendees facing one another.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, table microphone.


Format: A workshop provides an opportunity to exchange information or work on a common problem, project, or shared interest. Presentations are brief, allowing adequate time for reflective discussion and interaction. Didactic presentations are limited, and learning by doing occupies most of the session.

Room Set-up: Theater style (chairs only) configuration, head table for 5 next to podium.

Audio Visual: Screen and LCD projector, switcher for multiple connections to LCD, electrical power box with four plugs, podium with microphone.

Additional Audio Visual Requests

AV equipment noted above is complimentary. To order, rent, and pay for additional equipment contact, such as Mac adapters or computer speakers, please complete this form.  Freeman Audiovisual will be our audiovisual provider across all properties where sessions are taking place.

Please use the contact information below for all properties:
Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile, Hyatt Regency Chicago, Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers, Swissotel Chicago, and Fairmont Chicago Millennium Park 

Valerie Scaccia, Freeman AV
Ph: (708) 255-7167
Fax: (469) 621-5618
Audiovisual Order Form (please complete form and fax or email to Valerie)

Internet Access

Free WiFi is available in all meeting rooms at the Fairmont, Hyatt, Marriott,  Sheraton, and Swissotel hotels where sessions are being held. To connect to WiFi, attendees should scan for wireless networks and click to connect on the "AERA2015" network. Most of the hotels do not require a passcode. If you are asked for a passcode, enter "AERA2015." You need to scan for the wireless network at each venue and connect. This network applies only to the meeting rooms. It does not work in the hotel sleeping rooms.

Designed by Weber-Shandwick   Powered by eNOAH