Submission categories for topics include panel discussions, seminars, special topic lectures, technical trade presentations, and workshops, and are described in full below.

Topic Preparation & Submission

Before submitting your session, be sure to contact the suggested panelists/faculty to ensure their participation. If you session is accepted, all panelists/faculty should be informed of the day and time assigned and confirm their participation.

All topic submissions should include:

  • a brief summary of the topic,
  • the target audience, and
  • what attendees will learn.

Panel Discussions. Panel discussions provide a convenient forum for dialogue and are most effective when panelist/audience interaction is maximized. Panelists are encouraged to present opinions in brief statements, using minimal audio-visual aids. A leader, moderator, and no more than four panelists comprise a discussion. Leaders are encouraged to briefly introduce topics, guide discussions, and facilitate dialogue among all in attendance. Leaders choose panelists based on their knowledge of, experience in, or expertise on the subject matter. The moderator, who can be the same person as the leader, introduces the panelists and directs floor discussions and question/answers from the audience.

An hour and a half is allotted for each discussion. There will be two to four panel discussions daily from 12:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. This time limit should not be exceeded unless approved by the Program Committee. The audience may range from 50 to a couple hundred people. Discussion among panelists and the audience is the key to a successful discussion. This includes making certain that questions and comments from the audience are heard by all; the leader should interact with the panel facilitator to assure that the panelists can be heard at the back of the room. It is requested that all audience participants be required to identify themselves. The panelists should preplan several questions among themselves in case a stimulus to initiate discussion is required.

Panel discussion submissions should include the following:

  • title;
  • description;
  • what participants will learn;
  • sponsor (if any);
  • target audience; and
  • contact information for topic leader(s), moderator, and panelists.

Seminars. Seminars are coordinated presentations on a specific topic that allow for discussion among the seminar speakers and the audience. Seminars are presented by a leader (who chairs the session), a moderator (who introduces speakers and directions audience discussion), and no more than four panelists. The speaker and leader can be the same person.

Speakers should prepare their presentations as carefully and thoroughly as they would any scientific paper. Each speaker should be aware of what other seminar speakers intend to present, and the seminar leader should guide the speakers in preparation of their presentations so that a coordinated set of information is presented in the seminar topic area. The leader should also inform each speaker of the amount of time allowed for his/her participation well in advance of the seminar.

Two hours and fifteen minutes is allotted for each seminar, and this limit should not be exceeded unless approved by the Program Committee in advance. There are two to four seminars scheduled each morning and afternoon, with attendance being anywhere from 50 to several hundred. Because the seminar should allow for discussion among the speakers and the audience, one-third to one-half of the seminar time should be reserved for this purpose. The leader should interact with the seminar facilitator to assure that the speakers can be heard at the back of the room. It is requested that all audience participants be required to identify themselves. And, in order to stimulate discussion, speakers should preplan several questions to initiate a discussion.

Seminar submissions should include the following:

  • title;
  • description;
  • what participants will learn;
  • sponsor (if any);
  • target audience;
  • contact information for topic leader(s), moderator, and suggested speakers; and
  • suggested titles and durations for the speakers' presentations.

Special Topic Lectures. Special Topic Lectures (STLs) are formal presentations given by a single speaker on a specific topic, pre-planned topic. These lectures typically stand alone, however they may be topically linked to a panel discussion or a seminar. There are four named special topic lectures that are held each year—Charles River Ethics and Animal Welfare Lecture, Charles C. Hunter Lecture, Wallace P. Rowe Lecture, and the Nathan R. Brewer Award Recipient Lecture.

These presentations typically have a main speaker, in addition to a moderator and a facilitator. The moderator introduces the speaker, keeps the speaker within the time permitted, and addresses any question/answers from the audience. Audiences range in size from 50 to several hundred people. The time allotted for each presentation is one hour and there are typically two to four special topic lectures daily from 11 a.m. to noon.

STL submissions should include the following:

  • title,
  • description,
  • what participants will learn,
  • sponsor (if any),
  • target audience, and
  • contact information for the speaker.

Technical Trade Presentations. Technical trade presentations are 20-minute, informal talks given by representatives of exhibiting companies. These are not sales pitches; the goal is to share tips and information about new technology and products in the industry. Only one presentation per company will be accepted. All topics are reviewed and approved by the Exhibitor Advisory Council. Click here for examples of technical trade presentations.

Technical trade presentation submissions should include the following:

  • title;
  • description;
  • what participants will learn;
  • sponsor;
  • target audience;
  • contact information for the speaker.

Workshops. Workshops offer participants an opportunity for hands-on experience in a variety of laboratory techniques. Time allotments may vary, but most workshops are scheduled for a morning or afternoon session lasting three to four hours. Individual workshop leaders work closely with the workshop program chair in planning and coordinating the acquisition of laboratory equipment and animals, audiovisual equipment, and workshop facilitators well in advance of the presentation. The workshop leader may recruit additional faculty to lead parts of the presentation.

Workshop audiences are small, with registration generally limited to a range of 20 to 50 participants in order to assure adequate opportunity for hands-on experience and viewing of demonstrations. Leaders should arrive at least 30 minutes before the start of the workshop to greet facilitators and guest speakers and assure that everyone is familiar with their responsibilities. It is the responsibility of the workshop leader and workshop facilitator to check the room for the required equipment and to distribute handouts.

Workshop submissions should include the following:

  • title,
  • description,
  • what participants will learn,
  • sponsor (if any),
  • target audience,
  • contact information for topic leader(s) and faculty, and
  • any equipment/supplies needed.

Notification of Acceptance

Session leaders will be notified of the committee’s decisions no later than May 1.

The NMPC reserves the right to request changes or edits to the abstracts prior to acceptance. Abstracts and titles will be copyedited to conform with ASM style prior to publishing in AALAS publications without notification to the author.

Once a topic has been submitted through the submission website, the only means of communication and notification of status will be by email. Therefore, it is very important that a valid and current email address be on record. It is incumbent on the presenting author to update the online submission system with email address or other contact information changes. Please note that the abstract submission site is not connected to the AALAS membership database. Therefore, changing your address in the membership database does not cause a corresponding change in the abstract submission site.

Publication Rights

Accepted abstracts are published in the AALAS National Meeting Preliminary and Final Programs.

AALAS may request permission to incorporate a recording of all or part of your presentation in future professional development products, which could include AALAS Learning Library courses or educational DVDs. Your session PowerPoint® and an audio recording of your presentation may also be presented as a webinar on the AALAS web site.

The editor in chief of Comparative Medicine and the Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science welcomes submission of manuscripts related to the subject material presented at the National Meeting. Acceptance for publication is solely within the jurisdiction of the editors. A statement of credit should be included, stating “Presented at the National Meeting of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science, (place and date).”

Session Sponsorship

Sponsors will be listed in the Preliminary Program and Final Program as the sponsor for one of our seminars or other sessions.

The sponsor must be an affiliate member organization, commercial member company, or professional development organization officially affiliated with AALAS (e.g., AAALAC International, ACLAM, AMP, ASLAP, APV, LAMA, Charles River, Lab Products, Allentown, CTAD, CRB, ILAM, etc.). Exceptions may be made in special circumstances considered on a case-by-case ad hoc basis by the National Meeting Program Committee.

To be a full sponsor of a session, the sponsor must intellectually develop the presentation topic and have it accepted on the program as a seminar, special topics lecture, panel discussion, or workshop. Abstracts do not qualify for sponsorship. Sponsoring organizations must assume responsibility for all associated speaker and other reasonable expenses (if any) for the program event with the possible exception of requesting AALAS may waive registration for speakers that are not AALAS members or commercial exhibitors. The sponsor will be recognized in the preliminary and final programs and on the signage outside the meeting room.

To be a partial sponsor of a session, the sponsor must either contribute specific items, such as facility space, equipment or animals; a set sponsor fee (paid to AALAS) toward the session with the knowledge that the session expenses would be more and the session leader would recommend to the program committee how the funds would be distributed; or a speaker on just a portion of a session where they provide all the funding for that person. Organizations providing some modicum of financial support or some intellectual contributions will be acknowledged in the preliminary and final programs as partial sponsors of the session.

Speakers and session moderators can elaborate upon the intellectual or financial support of organizations or individuals more specifically at appropriate times during applicable sessions.

Policies & Procedures for Presenter Travel Budget Request

Section 4-20, II. E. Presenters (policy revised 10-30-15)

1. Presenters at AALAS NM are eligible for fees and honoraria under the following guidelines:

a. The topic is outside the normal scope of AALAS member expertise, is pertinent to the total NM program, and/or the speaker cannot participate without financial support.

b. Expenses and honoraria are specified and requested on the program proposal.

c. The amounts are within the program speaker budget and approved by the NMPC.

2. Presenters at AALAS NM are eligible for reimbursement of expenses under the following guidelines:

a. For the following expenses:

i. Round-trip travel (coach or mileage at current reimbursement rate)

ii. Full/partial registration fee

iii. One day's per diem (hotel and food)*.

iv. The NMPC may elect to grant a set amount to subsidize expenses.

*(Note: Exceptions to iii. above may be made by the NMPC, in instances in which airfare expense may be substantially reduced by traveling on Saturday that may result in more than one day's per diem.)

b. Budgeted and submitted expenses are reimbursed following the NM according to the Travel & Expense Reimbursement Policy (T&ERP). (Section 4-1)

c. Commercial Member exhibitors at the NM (AALAS Member or non-Member) who are coordinating a Seminar, Workshop, Special Topic Lecture, or Panel Discussion normally are not provided reimbursement of NM expenses.