Early Career Researcher Support

A platform for all your Early Career Research needs.

Why attend conferences?

Attend conferences to:

  •  keep up to date with current research
  •  network with others in your research field
  •  submit an abstract and possibly get a paper published in conference proceedings

Attending a confrence

Conferences can cover many topics over several days, and it may not be possible or feasible to attend all the sessions. Set some goals for what you want to learn and accomplish, and then plan accordingly to make the most of your attendance.

Decide which sessions to attend Once you know what you want to learn and accomplish from attending the conference, you can be selective.  The program is often released before the actual conference, so get out your highlighter and plan out your perfect day.
Network in person and online
  • Some networking tips: Be open, friendly, and get out of your comfort zone. Listen, share and engage.
  • Often there presenters stick around for discussion after a session. Talk to the presenters, ask questions and follow them on social media to stay connected.
  • Most conferences have a hashtag. be sure to share your experience on social media to connect with other attendees, continue the conversation online and possibly boost your followers.
Enjoy the experience Look for events outside of the conference such as dinners or meet-ups for extra networking opportunities and to have some fun.

Presenting at a Conference

Follow these tips for an engaging and memorable presentation.

Keep it visual Use images to provide a visual cue to your words. Images are a powerful memory tool and will keep your presentation fresh in attendees minds. Avoid putting too much text on a slide, and never put your entire presentation on slides for people to read along as your speak. 
A suggested formula 
  • Introduction/Overview/Hook
  • Theoretical Framework/Research Question
  • Methodology/Case Selection
  • Background/Literature Review
  • Discussion of Data/Results
  • Analysis
  • Conclusion

Remember not to spend too much time on the background information, and get right into what people actually want to hear: your research! 

Don't just wing it!              Practice your presentation to everyone who will listen.  Practicing helps you keep to your time limit, pick up on small mistakes and to build up your confidence. 

Choosing the right conference

It is just as important to evaluate which conferences to focus on as it is to evaluate the integrity of journals. Ensure that you protect yourself and publish only in reputable and recognised conferences. Conisder the following questions:

What is the research field of the conference? Are abstracts released as published abstracts?
Who will be attending the conference?  Are paper submissions sent out for peer review?
Which conferences do others in your communities of practices attend? Will conference papers be published in proceedings afterwards?
How likely is it that a paper might get accepted for the conference program? How is the conference viewed by your colleagues or pee

Predatory conferences (conferences promoted to fraudulently make money from attendance fees) are becoming an increasingly common part of academic life. When you receive emails to invite you to attend conferences, how do you know which one is legitimate, and which one is a spam invitation to collect registration fees for one that doesn’t exist?

Think.Check.Attend is a useful tool that can help determine the legitimacy and academics credentials of conferences.