Oral Presentation Guidelines

Preparing Your Presentation

SBM requires all speakers to:

  • Prepare slides in Microsoft PowerPoint.
  • Be certain that slides are formatted for electronic projection. To do-so, click “File” on the menu bar, then “Page Setup;” size your slides for “Onscreen Show.”
  • Name your file with Western alpha-numeric characters. Do not use characters that incorporate a dash, dot, or backslash, etc. as part of the name.
  • Place all audio and video clips linked with the presentation into a single file folder. Video files should be AVI QuickTime or MPEG1, not MPEG2.
  • If a presentation uses fonts other than the basic Windows fonts please copy these fonts in a folder along with the presentation. You will find these fonts located at C:\Windows\Fonts. (The fonts will have .tff as their file extension.)

Style Guidelines

  • Each slide should illustrate one major idea; content should be clearly visible to everyone in the audience, including those in the back of the room.
  • Keep the graphics and layout simple, with plenty of open space.
  • It’s recommended to use one solid color for the background.
  • Use san serif typeface such as Arial or Helvetica.
  • Use color for emphasis only; use colors consistently.
  • It is recommended to incorporate no more than one slide per every minute of your presentation.

Dropping Off Your Presentation

SBM requires all speakers to:

  • Bring presentations on a CD or USB Thumb Drive (preferred). Windows based computers running PowerPoint for Microsoft will be the meeting standard.
  • Drop PowerPoint presentations at the AV check-in desk (adjacent to registration) no later than four hours before presentation start time. The AV technicians will upload presentations and they will be ready by presentation time. Please do not plan on loading your presentation onto the laptop in the presentation room; doing so leads to delays.
  • Symposium chairs and presenters, it is recommended, but not required, that you place all presentations into one PowerPoint file. This will allow for easier transfer to the presentation room and shorten the turn over time in between presentations.

Presentation Arrival Time

  • Please be sure to arrive at your session room approximately 10 minutes prior to the start of your session.
  • Afternoon and Saturday morning paper session presentations are 12 minutes in length followed by three minutes of question and answer, and three minutes turnaround/preparation time for the next presenter. You may present for 15 minutes, but you will not have time for Q&A.
  • Midday paper session presentations are 10 minutes in length followed by three minutes of question and answer, and two minutes turnaround/preparation time for the next presenter. You may present for 12 minutes, but you will not have time for Q&A.
  • Symposium are 75 minutes in length. The symposium chair and presenters can determine how long each presenter gets to speak and how much time to allot at the end of the session for Q&A.


  • LCD projectors, computers, screens, microphones, speakers, and podiums will be available in each session room. Roaming AV technicians and SBM student volunteers will be available outside session rooms for the duration of sessions to assist in troubleshooting any issues that may arise.

Best Available Evidence

It is expected that the content or format of continuing education activities and related materials will promote improvements or quality in health care and not a specific proprietary business interest of a commercial interest.

Therefore, during your presentation, please adhere to the following three important points.

  1. Continuing education must give a balanced view of therapeutic options. Use of generic names will contribute to this impartiality. Avoid the use of trade names if at all possible. If your continuing education material or content includes trade names, trade names from several companies should be used where available, not just trade names from a single company.
  2. To ensure the best interests of the public, it is important to utilize and reference the best available evidence when preparing your presentation.
  3. No advertising is allowed on any slides or materials. Remove company names from slides and materials, for example, if they run along the bottom of a slide. Only direct references to the data being shown may run along the bottom of the slides.

Your presentation should also be compliant with the following continuing education content validation statements:

  1. All the recommendations involving clinical medicine in a continuing education activity are based on evidence that is accepted within the profession as adequate justification for their indications and contraindications in the care of patients.
  2. All scientific research referred to, reported in, or used in continuing education activities in support or justification of a patient care recommendation conforms to the generally accepted standards of experimental design, data collection, and analysis.