Abstract Presentation Guidelines


Important Dates

  • Early bird registration deadline March 23 
  • Pre-registration deadline April 24
  • Presentation Upload Deadline (PowerPoint, Video) - May 1, 2020

General Information

The APSA Annual Meeting provides a professional forum for the presentation and discussion of new ideas, issues and developments of importance to APSA members and to the interested community. The presentation of abstracts is a key feature of the meeting. Your cooperation in adhering to all of the guidelines will help the meeting run smoothly and provide quality and consistency for the attendees.

Speaker Registration Information

APSA policy dictates that all presenters are required to register for the annual meeting.  Pre-registration closes April 24, after this date you can register on site in Orlando. Learn more.

Abstract Rescheduling/Withdrawal

Presenters should make arrangements to be present for their assigned session. The order of presentation of the abstracts will not be changed. Withdrawal of abstracts after acceptance is strongly discouraged and may be subject to sanctions from the Board of Governors.

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Presentation Requirements

Electronic Presentations

All presentation rooms will be equipped with the following:

  • Wireless mouse
  • LCD projector
  • Podium with microphone
  • Appropriate screens
  • Monitor for speaker
  • Laser pointer

Uploading Your Presentation

  • All presenters must check in with the A/V staff in the Speaker Ready room at least 2 hours prior to their presentation, preferably the day before. Presenters are encouraged to review their slides/videos with AV staff in the speaker ready room.
  • Podium presenters - Plenary and Scientific sessions - upload your presentations by May 1.
    • Your presentation must be uploaded via the APSA platform. In mid-February presenting authors receive an email with a link and unique login to their abstract account. Use this account to update your information, including name, credentials, institution, presentation title, etc., and upload your slides/videos.
    • Videos - must include audio narration, narration from the podium will not be allowed.

The A/V technician will project your slides/video when you begin your presentation. There will be a separate screen allowing you to see the presentation while facing the audience. The A/V technicians will be available to assist you if needed.

Presentation Types 

Plenary Sessions
  • APSA Program - limited to 10 minutes: 5 mins. presentation, 5 mins. discussion.
  • APSA/IPSO Joint session - limited to 15 minutes: 10 mins. presentation, 5 mins. discussion.
  • Unlimited number of slides.
  • Slide presentation format - widescreen HD Format (16:9 aspect ratio).   

Scientific Sessions
  • APSA Program: limited to 8* minutes: 4 mins. presentation, 4 mins. discussion.
  • IPSO Program: limited to 8* minutes: 6 mins. presentation, 2 mins. discussion.
  • Unlimited number of slides.
  • Slide presentation format - widescreen HD Format (16:9 aspect ratio).
*except those abstracts presented in committee-specific sessions where the committee chair has indicated a different presentation length.

Abstracts with Video Presentations
  • Video must include audio narration of the procedure (presenters cannot narrate from the podium)
  • Video presentations are limited to 8 minutes: 5 mins. presentation, 3 mins. discussion, except for those abstracts presented in committee-specific sessions where the committee chair has indicated a different presentation length.
  • Format:
    • An aspect ratio of 16:9 or 4:3.

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Podium Presentations

Abstract presentations are spread out among 18 scientific sessions as follows:

Wednesday, May 13

  • IPSO Scientific Session 1: Operative Adjuncts that Improve Cancer Surgery and Reproductive Preservation - 8:15 am – 10:00 am.
  • IPSO Scientific Session 2: Tumor Staging, Sentinel Nodes and PDX Tumor Models - 4:00 pm – 5:30 pm.

 Thursday, May 14
  • APSA-IPSO Joint Session: Wilms Tumor Challenges; Neuroblastoma; Renal - 8:00 am – 11:00 am.  
  • Plenary Session - 1:30 pm – 2:45 pm. 
  • Scientific Session 1: Quality and Safety - 3:45 pm – 5:00 pm. 
  • Scientific Session 2: Neonatal GI - Basic Science and Clinical - 3:45 pm - 5:00 pm.
  • Scientific Session 3: ECLS and CDH - 3:45 pm - 5:00 pm.

 Friday, May 15
  • Plenary Session 2 - 11:15 am – 12:15 pm. 
  • New Technology Committee Education Session - 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm.
  • Informatics & Telemedicine Committee Education Session - 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm.
  • Surgical Critical Care Committee Education Session - 4:45 pm - 5:45 pm.
  • Fetal Diagnosis & Treatment Committee Education Session - 4:45 pm - 5:45 pm.

 Saturday, May 16
  • Scientific Session 4: Thoracic/Trauma - 7:00 am – 8:15 am.
  • Scientific Session 5: Gastrointestinal - Colorectal, Appendix - 7:00 am – 8:15 am.
  • Scientific Session 6: Gastrointestinal - Foregut, Midgut, Hepatobilary - 7:00 am – 8:15 am.
  • Scientific Session 7:  Education, GYN, Practice - 8:30 am – 9:30 am.
  • Research Committee Education Session - 8:30 am – 9:30 am.
  • Trauma Committee Education Session - 8:30 am – 9:30 am.
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APSA will provide one 4’ tall by 4’ long (1.22 meters) poster board and pushpins for your poster display. Poster boards will be numbered; be certain to display your materials on the board corresponding to your poster number.

IPSO posters will be displayed in Portico Hall during the IPSO Symposium May 13-14.  They will bemoved to the APSA poster hall in the Regency Exhibit hall afternoon of May 14. Authors are encouraged to be in attendance during the general session breaks Wednesday and Thursday.

APSA posters will be displayed in the Regency Exhibit Hall.  Authors are encouraged to be in attendance during the general session breaks Thursday, Friday and Saturday to address questions from meeting attendees.

Poster Hall Schedule 

IPSO Poster Set-up Tuesday, May 12   3:00 pm – 9:00 pm
IPSO Poster Viewing Wednesday, May 13  6:30 am - 6:00 pm
  Thursday, May 14 8:00 am - 11:00 am
APSA Poster Set-up Thursday, May 14 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Poster Viewing Thursday, May 14 3:30 pm - 7:00 pm
  Friday, May 15 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
  Saturday, May 16 7:00 am - 11:00 am
Poster Dismantle   Saturday, May 16 11:00 am

IPSO posters will be moved to the APSA exhibit hall at the conclusion of the IPSO program by staff.  APSA and the hotel are not responsible for your presentation materials.

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Tips for a Successful Presentation

Presentation times will be strictly enforced by session moderators. In consideration to subsequent presenters, if your presentation runs long, you will be asked to end it prior to completion and discussion time will be eliminated.

  • Practice the presentation several times, preferably with an audience of peers.
  • PowerPoint slides should be easily readable and understandable by the audience. Information should be legible when read unaided at a distance of 40 feet (12.9 meters). 
  • Use a big, bold font, such as Arial. Use contrasting colors, but avoid using too many colors. A maximum of three colors is recommended.
  • Avoid putting too much information on one slide. A limit of 36 words is recommended.
  • Avoid projecting typed pages as they are not legible more than a few feet from the projected image.
  • Information should be presented horizontally (landscape). 
  • Significant results and conclusions should be highlighted on the visuals.
  • Using a laser pointer or the pointer function within PowerPoint is acceptable, but using other functions within PowerPoint to highlight salient information during your talk is preferred (animation, etc).
  • Remain at the podium following your presentation to answer questions from the audience.
  • Summarize questions from the audience into the microphone for the entire audience to hear before attempting to respond.
  • Speak clearly into the microphone to be heard in the back of the room.
  • Familiarize yourself with the podium and computer prior to your session if able
  • Speak to the audience, not to the visual.
  • Avoid slang and contractions when possible.
  • Bring a back-up copy of the digital file in the event the original file has been corrupted.

Slide Presentations:

  • Text should be summarized statements, no more than six words per statement and no more than six points per slide. Several simple slides are preferable to one complicated slide.
  • Tables and graphs should be used to show only relevant information. Titles, headings and legends should be clearly presented. Tables: limit the size to six rows and four columns. Graphs: be sure they are simple, big and bold, making one point at a time. General trends and relative values are better than detailed line drawings. Photographs: should tell a story and support the overall presentation. Avoid using poor quality photos. You are responsible for insuring you have adequate permission for any graphs, tables or images you include in your presentation.

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APSA awards several prizes for outstanding presentations.

Innovation Award
One $500 award is given for best innovation abstract. The winning presentation is selected by special committee made up of the Program Committee, New Technology Committee and members of the APSA Board of Governors. The award is based solely on scores determined from the presentation at the annual meeting. Learn more.

Posters of Distinction 
APSA selects two outstanding posters, one in basic science and one in clinical categories. Posters are judged on scientific merit and visual presentation.  Each winner will receive a $250 award.

Award recipients must be residents or fellows currently enrolled in a training program. Learn more.

M. Judah Folkman Memorial Awards

APSA and the APSTPD are proud to present the M. Judah Folkman Memorial Award for outstanding research presentations given during the APSA Annual Meeting. Presentations are judged on scientific merit, the presented work and the ability to field questions from the membership.

Members of the Program Committee and the APSTPD select one winner in basic science and one winner in clinical categories. Each winner will receive a $1,000 award and a medallion.

Award recipients must be residents or fellows currently enrolled in a training program.   Learn more.

Quality, Safety and Value in Surgery Award
This award is given to the manuscript that describes a research study or quality improvement project that best addresses the value proposition by demonstrating an improvement in outcomes while at the same time reducing cost or other measures of resource utilization. The quality of the manuscript and potential impact of the intervention for improving value outside of the author’s own institution will serve as the primary criteria for judging. The recipient of the award will receive a $500 prize and a framed certificate.

  • Eligible abstracts are identified by the APSA Surgical Quality & Safety Committee.
  • A manuscript supporting the abstract must be submitted for review for publication in the Journal of Pediatric Surgery or a journal of the author's choosing by the stated deadline.
  • The recipient will contribute content to the APSA Quality and Safety toolkit.
  • Posters and video presentations are not eligible, unless specifically identified as candidates by the APSA Surgical Quality & Safety Committee. Learn more.

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Manuscript Submission

View Submission Instructions
Submission period is February 20 - March 16, 2020.

Authors presenting abstracts in the Plenary and Scientific sessions have the option* to submit manuscripts for publication in the Annual Meeting edition of the Journal of Pediatric Surgery (January 2021). Presentation of your abstract at the annual meeting is not a guarantee of acceptance for publication. Posters and videos are not eligible for manuscript submission.*

Manuscripts must be submitted via the APSA platform.  All presenting authors received notification with a link and unique login to the platform, including manuscript submission. If you did not receive an email and believe that you should have, contact Marina Petrulla
* Manuscript submission is required for abstracts that have been identified as candidates for the Quality Award, and in some cases may include poster and video abstracts. 


Casey M. Calkins, MD, Program Committee Chair
Lee Ann Clark, Executive Director
Marina Petrulla, Administrative Director