The following guidelines are meant to help you with your preparations to present at the conference. Should you have additional questions after reading these guidelines, please contact the OLC Conference Management Team at


Promote Your Session

Let’s work together to create some buzz about your participation in this conference! Please promote your own presentation as well as the conference in general to your colleagues and social networks. Download our presenter promo kit (coming soon) to help! The Twitter handle is @OLCToday; the hashtag for this conference is #OLCInnovate. Feel free to create a custom hashtag for your own presentation as well. Presenters may indicate a custom hashtag in the presentation claiming process. We also suggest you post hashtags at the start of your session and encourage attendees to use them.

Presenter FAQ

The 2019 conference in its fourth year had an onsite attendance of 1,275 and a virtual attendance of 1000 from over 550+ institutions, 50 states & territories, and 13 countries.

Yes, all presenters are required to register in advance of the conference. Presenters must register and pay the registration fee no later than February 5, 2020 in order to avoid potential session cancelation. The registration fee table can be found on the registration page. Any presenter unable to register by February 5 should contact Christine Hinkley, Senior Director of Conferences, at with a description of the issue and the time frame you expect it to be resolved within.

No, OLC does not cover any other conference-related expenses for presenters. As a non-profit, OLC is unable to provide assistance for travel or lodging expenses to presenters. Presenters are responsible for their own travel and lodging expenses, including all taxes and fees on said travel and lodging expenses.

The final date presenters can submit edits to their abstracts or submit co-presenter information is February 5, 2020. Any changes submitted after that date will not be included in the printed Schedule at a Glance and may or may not be updated on the website and mobile app. Any changes to presenters, session descriptions, etc. must be submitted no later than February 5 to

Yes, all proposals go through a rigorous 3-phase review process. The first phase consists of a double-blind peer-review. The second phase is review and recommendation by the track chairs. The third phase is final review by the conference and program chairs and the OLC conference team.

Submission notifications will be emailed on December 4. Notifications are sent to all authors on each submission. Only the lead presenter should claim the session. All submissions are sent notification emails, regardless of acceptance status. Please be sure to “whitelist” emails from the domain. If you do not receive a notification email, please contact us at

No, OLC does not require a final paper submission. Your presentation is your final product. We require presenters to upload a final presentation by March 20, 2020 to the presenter’s session page so that it is available to conference attendees. Your presentation can be a link (ie. Prezi, SlideShare, VoiceThread, etc.) or a file upload (.pdf is recommended). This material, along with the full abstract and information about the authors, becomes part of the conference materials that remain on the website. You may also elect to submit a final paper (recommended for Research track sessions), should you have one, for consideration for publication in OLC’s Online Learning Journal. These are the stated guidelines for the journal: papers should be full papers, which include scientific rigor and data. The results presented should clearly advance our field by providing new information. Papers that are purely anecdotal or have no research underlayment will not be considered for publication. Papers are typically 10 to 20 pages printed and conform to the guidelines for publication found at All full paper submissions may be eligible for publication in the conference proceedings and/or special issue of the Online Learning Journal. These manuscripts must be original (not published or accepted in a journal or conference proceedings and currently not under consideration for publication elsewhere). Papers are blind reviewed.

OLC’s policy on virtual presentations is that the lead presenter must register for and attend the conference on-site. A co-presenter may be brought in virtually and must pay the virtual registration fee. OLC does not provide IT support or cover the cost of any additional technology required for virtual presenters. Discovery sessions are not conducive to virtual presenters due to difficulties with hearing sound volume (there are no speakers for audio output provided).

No, OLC does not provide laptops for presenters. Each room is equipped with an LCD projector, a wired Internet connection to the podium, laptop audio output capability, a podium and a screen. Computers are not provided. Each presenter must bring their own laptop. LCD projectors are installed with an HDMI cable to accommodate both PC and Macintosh systems. Make certain that your computer is properly configured and all the necessary plug-ins have been pre-loaded prior to your presentation. In addition, because of the idiosyncrasies of internet traffic, you should consider loading Web pages onto a flash drive rather than trying to call them up live. If you have technical questions or other A/V needs not mentioned above, please contact

We will provide anHDMI connection at the podium for presentations.  If your laptop does not have an HDMI output, we recommend you bring an adapter for your laptop depending on what ports your laptop has.   

Yes, OLC has contracted for a special room rate at the Sheraton Grand Chicago, where the conference will be held. Attendees of the conference must book their hotel room through the conference website travel page no later than Monday, March 9, 2020 in order to receive discounted rates starting at $249+* per night plus taxes and fees. The special conference rate also applies for three days prior to and three days after the conclusion of the conference. You will be able to make your hotel reservations using the reservations link on the travel page.

The conference website will have a complete listing of sessions where you may find the date and time assigned for your presentation. After the schedule is published in December, you may search for your presentation date/time/room assignment. You may search a number of ways – by track, by presentation type, date, etc. – to find your presentation. You can also use the Presenter tab to search by your last name. There are advanced search filters in the “Search” tab that allow you to search by keyword, date, session type, track, audience, or special session type. Click on the link for your presentation and you will see the full description for your session. Please refer to the conference website if you are uncertain about your presentation type or length. It will be listed as part of your presentation description. Be sure to check back frequently as presentation rooms, dates, and times do change. We recommend that you plan to stay through the end of the conference (Friday at 1pm CT) and make your travel arrangements accordingly.

Certain sessions have been designated for live streaming from the conference for virtual attendee viewing. Please review the live streaming schedule to determine if your session has been designated for streaming. If so, at least one presenter from each streamed session must complete the presenter release form. Please note that the photo uploaded to your user profile will be used for the streamed session catalog. Beyond the release form, minimal additional preparation is required for live streamed presenters.

  • We do ask that you use the microphone provided for your presentation as well as to repeat any questions you may be asked.
  • Please do acknowledge your virtual audience and make sure that any activities you may plan for your session include an option for virtual attendees.
  • You will have a session chair at your presentation to introduce your session as well as monitor questions during the broadcast from virtual attendees and present those to you on their behalf during Q & A. Your session chair may make contact with you prior to the start of the conference.
  • All streamed sessions will be available on-demand post-conference to all onsite and virtual attendees for 1 year.
  • If you have any questions regarding the streaming sessions, contact the conference management team at Please take a moment and look over these guidelines and documents if your presentation is scheduled to be streamed:
  • OLC Presenter Services – Streaming Presenter Considerations – A useful guide to prepare the presenters (coming soon)
  • Presenter Best Practices – A helpful video from Mediasite
  • Mediasite Player – Technical requirements for the viewing audience
  • Mediasite Test Presentation – Mediasite presentations will play with any major internet browser. Use the following links to ensure a successful playback experience.
  • Mediasite viewing requirements

Goals for Live Stream Sessions: 

  • Actively involve virtual attendees in the session so they feel as if they are participating in the conference.
  • Create an open dialog between virtual attendees the session presenters and session participants.

Tips for Designing Your Live Streamed Session: 

  • Create and upload an online worksheet or handout so audience can take notes
  • Be sure to upload your presentation and any additional materials so virtual attendees can access them quickly and easily
  • Add the OLC-provided session evaluation reminder slide to the beginning and end of your slide deck
  • Design with interaction in mind (Use interactive features (i.e. polling, Q&A, Twitter) at the beginning, middle and end interaction)
  • Plan content in small segments that allow for discussion breaks or interactivity

Working with Your Session Chair:

  • Arrive early to meet your Session Chair
  • Agree on a signal indicating questions from the virtual audience
  • Provide all necessary information to Session Chair (i.e. polling information) before session start
  • Indicate if you want signals regarding time

Delivering an Interactive, Live Streamed Session

  • Engage both audiences with your intro; ask questions, tell an interesting story
  • Plan breaks for questions or comments; seek input from virtual audience; plan for a potential time delay in responses from virtual audience (could be up to 45 seconds based on upload and download speeds)
  • Pay attention to signals from the Session Chair
  • Repeat questions from in-room participants who do not use a microphone
  • Be conscientious of wearing a microphone. Your mic will pick up any side commentary with co-presenters that the online audience can hear
  • Save time at the end of the presentation for audience Q & A
  • Provide contact information for post-session questions
  • Thank both audiences for their participation
  • Remind both onsite and virtual audience to please complete the session evaluation form (found on the session page via mobile app & conference website)

Yes. Each session has a link on the website and in the mobile app that allows attendees to complete session evaluation forms online. All session evaluations will be collected, tabulated by the conference management team, and the results sent to you in the weeks following the conference. Keynote and plenary presentations will have their evaluations gathered in the online post-conference survey. Download our “Session Evaluation Reminder Slide” (.pptx coming soon) to insert at the beginning and end of your presentation to encourage attendees to complete evaluations for your session. Please note that we no longer use paper evaluation forms. All sessions evaluations are done through the conference mobile app or website.

Each session will have either a session chair or a hall monitor. All live streamed sessions will have session chairs, who will notify the AV manager if the presenter is having technical issues, introduce the presentation to the onsite and virtual audiences, monitor the live stream, and collect virtual attendee questions to pose to the presenter(s) during Q & A. Non-streamed sessions will have hall monitors, who will report technical issues to the AV manager.

Due to the number of presentations, we are unable to make photocopies of any presentation materials, either onsite or prior to the conference. We encourage you to post your presentation and any support materials to the conference proceedings repository. If you feel you must provide handouts during your presentation, we recommend bringing at least 35-50 copies. If there are extra handouts, you may bring them to the Registration Desk and they will be displayed for others to pick-up.

No, OLC does not provide flipcharts for presenters to use in the presentation rooms except to workshop presenters on request. We recommend that you start a Google doc and project it as your “flip chart” and then share the doc with any participants who want access after your presentation.

Breakout rooms will have screens that are set up for 16:9 presentations, but either 4:3 or 16:9 can be accommodated (subject to change upon further discussions with the onsite AV team). This FAQ item will be updated if this changes.

Yes! Let’s work together to create some buzz about your participation in this conference! Please promote your own presentation as well as the conference in general to your colleagues and social networks. Download the presenter promo kit to help! The Twitter handle is @OLCToday; the hashtag for this conference is #OLCInnovate. Feel free to create hashtag for your own presentation as well. Presenters may indicate a custom hashtag in the presentation claiming process. We also suggest you post hashtags at the start of your session and encourage attendees to use them.

Check in and pick-up your name badge at the conference registration desk. Check the website to verify your session time/room. Last minute changes are always possible.

It is becoming increasingly common for conference participants to document and disseminate the information shared in conference sessions through social media.  We are requesting that you help them (and us) capture, credit, and amplify your message more effectively and accurately. Here are some best practices and ideas for your consideration.

  • Include your Twitter handle and conference hashtag on each slide.  If you do not have a Twitter handle, consider including one of a research partner or affiliated program or institution. Doing so benefits you in several ways.  First, it provides session attendees with an easy way to give you credit for your ideas.  Second, it allows you to monitor what attendees are tweeting about your session.  If they quote you incorrectly, you have the opportunity to correct them or engage them in dialogue.  Finally, by having the information on each slide, it automatically provides a source and context when participants take pictures of your slides – even if they fail to caption the pictures on social media.

  • Be explicit (in advance) about things you don’t want shared beyond the room. If there are just a few ideas within your talk that are sensitive in nature, just make that clear to your audience; live tweeters are even more likely to honor your wishes than the non-tweeting conference goer, because if they share something inappropriate you are more likely to find out!

  • Consider publishing your slides to a digital slide sharing service. Many presenters across disciplines are beginning to publish their slides – either in advance or immediately after –  to platforms such as  This allows attendees to revisit the presentation and reaches individuals who were unable to attend your session, thereby amplifying your message far beyond your session.  If you choose to publish your slides, you can include the link in your session page instead of your final presentation file (due March 20).

  • Use a microphone and repeat any audience questions into it. Some of these sessions are being live streamed; virtual attendees cannot hear you or questions if they are not spoken into a microphone.

As lead presenter of a session at the conference, we urge you to upload or link to your presentation file and any additional supplemental files for your presentation. We ask that upload your presentation files no later than March 20, 2020. These materials will be available to onsite and virtual conference attendees on the OLC Innovate 2020 website, linked on your session page. Providing your final presentation is essential to providing a quality conference experience for all attendees. 

  • Log into the OLC conference management system
  • Click on “Account” and then “My Sessions”.
  • Next to your session, click on the “Edit” link. 
  • Click on the “Upload Files” link for your session.
  • Add your presentation url or upload your presentation file using the file browser.  (If you are using PowerPoint, we recommend saving your ppt file as a PDF and uploading the smaller file-size PDF.)
  • Scroll down and click “Save”. 

If you make changes to your presentation in the weeks leading up to the conference, you may upload a revised version of your presentation at any time by following the same steps outlined above.

  • These Discovery Sessions should include a brief (10-15 minutes maximum, repeated to attendees over a 45 minute time period) electronic presentation to elicit ideas from your peers. The Discovery Sessions allow for interactive 1:1 discussions between presenters and attendees. In general, we recommend a short series of PowerPoint slides (no more than 5) that hit your key points and are visually appealing to draw attendees to your table. The Discovery Session is 45 minutes long, so you will be starting and stopping the slide show repeatedly as attendees come and go from your table. People will likely join during the middle of your presentation; consider beforehand how you will welcome them into the conversation.
  • For your presentation, you will be assigned a concurrent session, a presentation table in the Emerging Ideas session room, and a position number  to indicate your table location. You will find signs on the tables in that area indicating in which space you should set-up your equipment. Sessions are arranged alphabetically by title. Please, do not leave your laptop unattended at anytime. We recommend instead that you leave the concurrent session just prior to your Discovery Session a little early to give yourself plenty of time to set-up your laptop for your conversation. 
  • All sessions are designated at BYOD (Bring Your Own Device). Each presenter must bring their own laptop/device. You will present on your laptop to attendees as they circulate around the area to the various Discovery Session stations. The conference will provide a small table for your laptop, wireless internet, and power to the table.
  • There is no right or wrong way to present your Discovery Session. There are no specific requirements, other than they are conducted electronically on a laptop or other electronic device (such as an iPad) large enough for an attendee to easily read the screen while standing next to you. No projector devices, please.
  • It is especially important for Discovery Session presenters to upload your presentation and any support materials (including handouts) to the conference repository prior to the conference. There are several Discovery Sessions occurring during this session, and attendees will want to view in the conference repository any Discovery Session they miss. Questions on uploading to the repository can be emailed to OLC Conference Support at Handouts should be uploaded to the repository. However, if you feel you must have some hard-copy handouts on hand, please print them and bring them with you. We are unable to print those for you onsite.
  • Finally, please note that there is no laptop audio output provided in the electronic Discovery Session. It is simply too loud to be able to use audio output of any type during your presentation.

Please check this page as updates and additional information is added as the conference approaches.