Session Chair Overview/Expectations

Session chairs received their session acceptance or rejection notification on 11 July. Please note that your session may have been moved to and accepted by another more appropriate topic area than the one to which it was submitted. If your Program Committee representative needs you to merge with another similar session proposal, they may have contacted you via the email address tied to the session, but they have ultimate purview over the sessions in their topic area.

If accepted, your session will be available for abstract submissions. You are expected to monitor your session during the submission period specifically for abstracts that clearly do not belong in your session. As a reminder, abstract text will not be viewable to the public during the submission period.

Chairs are allowed to submit abstracts to their own session, but are NOT allowed to be invited authors to their own session.

At least ONE of the chairs must be available in late September for the scheduling of your session. Please note, at the discretion of your Program Committee representative, you may be asked to merge with another session in early to mid-September.

Refer to the Session Proposal Guidelines for details on the session proposal submission process.

Abstract notifications and notification of your sessions’ official scheduled day and time will be sent out in early November 2017. After this date, please monitor your session to note withdrawals.

Invited Poster Authors

Each session will be able to invite one invited author during the abstract submission period. Objectives for allowing invited authors include: 1) raising the profile of a session; and 2) enticing authors who would not otherwise submit an abstract to a session in an effort to, for example, enhance diversity or interdisciplinary perspectives or feature early career scientists.

Session chairs will not be allowed to present an invited poster in a session they are chairing. However, chairs may submit a contributed abstract to a session they are chairing.

Invited poster authors do not receive waived or discounted abstract fees, registration fees or travel reimbursement.

First Author Guidelines

Please keep in mind the Ocean Sciences Meeting First Author policy as you consider an Invited Author for your session. First (Presenting) Author Policy: if a first (presenting) author would like to submit (present) more than one abstract, the author can submit in accordance with the following rule. Note that all invited authors will receive a poster presentation for that abstract.

  • One (1) contributed and one (1) invited poster abstract to ANY topic area
  • One (1) contributed to any topic area plus (1) additional contributed to one of these topic areas:
    • Education, Outreach and Policy
    • Ocean Data Management

Invited Author Information

  • Chairs may access the online invitation management system to enter the name of the individual they wish to invite to submit to their poster session.
  • Chairs are asked to manage and send formal invitations to Invited Authors via the online program management system by Wednesday, 23 August 2017. However, chairs still have access to the system to send formal invitations up until the deadline if needed.  Please send invitations as soon as possible so that your invited author will have enough time to accept and submit their abstract before the 6 September abstract deadline. There will be no exceptions to the submission deadline.
  • Invited Authors must not submit their abstract until they receive an email from the online invitation system with detailed instructions. Invited Authors must accept their invitation via the online abstract submission system in order to submit their abstract directly to your session by the deadline of Wednesday, 6 September 2017. This is a firm deadline and late submissions will not be accepted.

Chairs must invite follow the process below to invite authors.

  1. To begin, log in your AGU universal log-in credentials.
  2. Once logged in to the abstract management system, chairs will see the Ocean Sciences Meeting ‘User Portal’ page. Select the ‘My Account’ link on the left menu bar.
  3. The session title will be listed in the center of the page. Select the title of your session.
  4. On the Session Proposal Control Panel on the left-hand side, select the ‘Invited Author Tool’ link.
  5. Enter the name of your Invited Author in the ‘Person Search’ field.
  6. From the search results, select the name of the Invited Author. If an Invited Author record is not located in the search, you may create a new record by entering the email address.
  7. At the bottom of the page select the grey ‘Send Email Invite’ button to send a formal invitation to the invited author.
  8. Invited Authors must not submit their abstract until they receive an email from the online invitation system with detailed instructions. Otherwise, their abstract will NOT be noted as “invited”.

 Important Reminders

  • Invited Authors will receive a poster presentation.
  • An individual may not accept invitations to submit an abstract to more than one (1) session.
  • Session Chairs may not be the First Author or Presenter on an invited abstract in the session they are chairing. However, Chairs may submit a contributed abstract to a session they are chairing.
  • All abstract submission fees are nonrefundable; refunds will not be issued if policies are violated or an abstract is rejected.
  • Invited Authors do not receive waived or discounted abstract submission fees and registration fees.
  • No travel reimbursements are provided to Invited Authors.

If you have any questions regarding membership status of an Invited Author, contact the Scientific Program Team.

Monitoring Abstracts

Abstract Submissions are open from 12 July to 6 September 2017. You may invite one authors to submit to your poster session as invited author though invited authors can still accept and submit up to the 6 September deadline.

During the abstract submission process, session chairs are expected to monitor the abstracts submitted to their session via the online system, using your AGU member email and password. Once you log in, select the session title and then “My Account” from the left hand side control panel.

Session chairs should be looking for the following:

  • Abstracts that clearly do not belong in your session. Please notify by 6 September and we will contact the author with the concern and move the abstract to a more appropriate session. This may be due to author oversight or a misunderstanding of the session’s intent.
    • Remember that an abstract cannot be transferred after the program is finalized, so each author is counting on you as a chair to make sure that all abstracts submitted and accepted to your session are appropriate to the topic.
  • Invited authors who have not accepted the invitation to submit or have not submitted their abstract. Please follow up to ensure your invited author has received the invitation and intends to submit the abstract. Late submissions will not be accepted. If the author has declined the invitation, you can invite another author in their place. You can do this up until 23 August.
  • Other sessions with which your session can be merged based on abstract submissions. Please notify your program committee representative if you have any suggestions on merges.

Please contact or your program committee representative if you have any concerns while monitoring your session during the abstract submission period.

After Abstract Deadline

Session Scheduling

The chair(s) will have from Tuesday, 26 September through Tuesday, 3 October 2017 to organize the abstracts submitted to their sessions by assigning the presentation order and duration, if an oral session is allotted. Chairs must also designate two (2) session moderators and one (1) Student Paper Evaluation liaison for each allocated session during this time.

At least one of the chairs must be available during the scheduling period; during this time, the chairs will be notified of the number of oral and/or poster sessions they will receive, based on the total number of accepted abstracts submitted. Due to content overlap and number of abstracts submitted, the Program Committee may also require some sessions to be merged at this time. If you have any questions regarding your allocated sessions, please contact the appropriate Program Committee representative.

Session scheduling must be completed in the online abstract system by 3 October, prior to the Program Committee scheduling meeting. Session chairs will no longer have access to their sessions once the Program Committee scheduling meeting begins. During the scheduling meeting, the Program Committee will assign days, times, and meeting rooms for each approved session.

Session Formats

There are two main session formats held during the Ocean Sciences Meeting–oral and poster. The Program Committee representative is responsible for the allocation of oral and poster sessions within their respective topic areas. Information whether a session has been assigned an oral or poster session or a combination of oral and poster will be available to session chairs in the scheduling system in late-September and notified via email when this system opens, after the abstract submission deadline.

  • Poster Sessions: Each poster session will be displayed for full meeting, but will only be considered active for the day of the poster session, for a total of 2 hours. Posters presenters are encouraged to submit an online ePoster (electronic version) in addition to presenting at the meeting.
  • Oral Sessions: Oral sessions will receive a 2-hour time slot. The standard oral session format for the Ocean Sciences Meeting is eight 15 minute presentations. To encourage more oral presentations at the meeting, chairs may schedule their oral sessions with durations other than 15 minutes. For example, chairs may elect to schedule twelve 10 minute presentations. The program committee recommends that presentations do not fall below 8 minutes and do not exceed 20 minutes.

Final Program

In early November 2017, abstract acceptance notices will be distributed electronically and the final program will be available online.

After the program has been published in early November, please note that authors will be required to accept or decline their presentation. If the author declines, the abstract will be withdrawn from your session. Please note, if you are chairing multiple sessions and also submitted abstracts to the scientific program the Program Committee CANNOT guarantee that you will be free of scheduling conflicts at the meeting due to the size of the program. Please ensure the co-chairs of the session are available to step in to moderate a session if the need arises.

Replacing an empty oral presentation: If the withdrawal is from an oral session, the session chairs can request that a poster presentation from the accompanying poster session be moved to replace the withdrawn oral presentation. This can only be done to and from accompanying sessions and only with the authors’ explicit consent. Please send an email to with the details of the withdrawn abstract, the details of the abstract that will be moved into the oral presentation slot, and the email or message where the author gave consent to being moved.

Note: New abstracts CANNOT be added to fill empty slots in either oral or poster session. Also, after the program has been finalized, poster presentations CANNOT be moved to different poster sessions due to the logistical layout of the poster hall.