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Being A Track Chair at a Conference: Tips and Tricks

We all like to attend conferences for the content and networking but one of the things that make good conferences work is not always recognised.  The programme committee have to get the programme right and the speakers need to deliver.  However, it is essential that the conference organisers can call on a pool of Track chairs to help speakers prepare, run the track, and encourage feedback and interaction.

As a veteran of over 23 years of EuroSTAR and other conferences, Graham has been a track chair on many occasions.  He says “I have also had the pleasant experience of watching other good track chairing but, on occasion, I have unfortunately also had to experience the pain of sessions that did not work out as planned”.

In this short webinar, Graham will share his thoughts with you on how to be a good track chair in terms of supporting the speakers and running the sessions. A conference session is like a good book – there needs to a good beginning, an engaging and interesting middle, and a strong finish.  Graham will share some hints and tips including some “Gotchas” that can catch you out if you are not prepared for them.

Sessions come in a variety of formats and for those where discussion is both sought and encouraged Graham will explain how the use of K-cards can help to facilitate structured Q&A.  Their use is optional and at the speaker’s request, however understanding how they work will help you to use them effectively if required.

This session is aimed at anyone who is interesting in becoming a track chair or looking to improve their approach to carrying out this role which when it is done well benefits the speaker, the conference and you.

Please Note: Graham will always be on hand for questions/concerns before or during the EuroSTAR conference.

Key Takeaways

    1. To understand the key responsibilities of a Track chair
    2. How good track chairs help speakers, the conference delegates and themselves
    3. Some tips to succeed and some traps to avoid.

Editor's Image

Graham Freeburn

About Graham Freeburn

Over 33 years in IT working in a variety of roles. Focussed on Software Testing for more than 22 years and co-founder of the Scottish Testing Group. Frequent speaker at UK and International testing conferences, winner of 2016 EuroSTAR Testing Excellence Award and Eurostar 2017 Programme Committee Member. Twitter: @freeburn_g 

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  3. Maureen Diaz says:

    Thanks for the blog. I will add this to my reading log. It is really helpful for people who are interested in being track chair.It is going to help people who are organizing the conference or who are chairing it and also who are attending the conference .

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