Call for Proposals for 70th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting

The 70th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo is the largest and most important scientific meeting and tradeshow in clinical chemistry and lab medicine. The 2018 meeting in Chicago, Illinois.

Submit a Scientific Session Proposal Now for the 2018 Meeting
The Annual Meeting Organizing Committee (AMOC) for the 70th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo is soliciting high quality, innovative proposals (speakers, topics, and formats) for the meeting’s scientific sessions. The AMOC strongly encourages new learning formats that present the newest cutting edge science.

How to Submit a Proposal

DEADLINE: 5 p.m. EST (U.S.), October 31, 2017

All proposals must be submitted online. Scroll to the bottom of the page to submit. Before submitting your proposal, please check that all required fields have been completed. Incomplete proposals may be delayed or rejected.

Scientific Session Proposal Content

  • Session Title
  • Session Overview (50 – 60 words)
  • Intended Audience
  • Needs assessment (why is this education important for AACC Annual Scientific Meeting attendees?)
  • Learning objectives (e.g. at the Proposals should also indicate the level of material to be presented to help potential attendees determine if the programming is appropriate for their level of background knowledge and experience.)

Levels include:

Basic: Content should be appropriate for participants whose previous training or experience in the subject is minimal.

Intermediate: Content should be appropriate for participants with general knowledge and training in theory and application of the subject.

Advanced: Content should be appropriate for participants with extensive knowledge of current theory and practice who wish to refine and enhance their skills or to learn the newest principles and techniques.


The electronic submission system will not allow storage of partial submissions. You cannot save your unfinished submission and come back to it later. You must complete your entire submission at one time. Incomplete electronic submissions will be lost and the applicant will have to start the submission process from the beginning.

It is essential that all session faculty are contacted and agree to participate in your session prior to the submission of your proposal with the understanding that the invitation is not necessarily an acceptance of the session, speakers, or format. Failure to meet this requirement will result in rejection of your submission.

If your session has been developed in cooperation with an AACC division or other organization, the proposal must include the title of the division or organization, the name and contact information of the division or organization officer(s) who were involved, and a brief description of how the division or organization assisted in the development of the session proposal.

Proposals developed in cooperation with other clinical organizations must be submitted to the AACC Clinical Societies Collaboration Committee (CSCC) prior to October 2, 2017. These proposals will be evaluated and then the moderator will be given feedback prior to November 10, 2017 so that the proposal can then be submitted. Contact David Sacks, CSCC Committee Chair, at if you have a proposal for review or questions regarding these types of submissions.

Please consider formats that will optimize the educational experience and learning. Links to resources will be made available on the sessions submission web site . All proposals must describe the format for the session and should indicate if the session will use any interactive tools (audience response, group formats) or if it will be a lecture or panel. Use your imagination and submit formats that you’ve experienced that were successful. Be creative.

Possible options include:

  • Case Studies
  • Point/Counter Point
  • Audience Response Systems (polling, assessing pre- and post-education)
  • Debates
  • Small Group Discussions
  • Mock Trials
  • Other interactive, hands-on

Educational sessions for the 79th AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo include:

  • Symposia
  • Brown Bags
  • AACC University (Short Courses, Sunday AM only or PM only). AACC University takes place on the Sunday before the regular meeting and there is a separate fee for sessions. AACC University is for attendees who might not be able to attend the regular sessions during the week or who are interested in a particular additional topic or speaker. AMOC reserves the right to choose which proposals will be placed within AACC University.

Symposia and Short Courses will be scheduled as follows:

Sunday (AACC University)





AM (10:30 – 12 Noon)

AM (10:30 – 12 Noon)

AM (10:30 – 12 Noon)

AM (10:30 – 12 Noon)

AM (10:30 – 12 Noon)

Mid-Day (12:30 – 2)

PM (1:30 – 4)

PM (2:30 – 4)

PM (2:30 – 5)

PM (2:30 – 5)


Brown Bags will be scheduled as follows:




AM (7:30 – 8:30)

AM (7:30 – 8:30)

AM (7:30 – 8:30)

PM (12:30 – 1:30)

PM (12:30 – 1:30)

PM (12:30 – 1:30)

Brown Bag sessions are small discussion groups meant to provide an  opportunity for intimate and active exchange between an individual knowledgeable in the field and up to 10 registrants. In addition, this provides a great opportunity for first-time presenters to participate in an international meeting. Young laboratorians are particularly encouraged to submit proposals.

Only one speaker per Brown Bag session is permitted. Accepted sessions will be given twice on the same day by the same speaker.

Speakers are encouraged to draw participants into focused discussions and to stop often for Q&A, dialog, learning exercises, and debate.

Course materials are expected and essential.

All sessions will require handouts to be submitted no later than 30 days prior to the meeting so that attendees can download the materials prior to arriving at the annual scientific meeting.

New This Year: AMOC members will review each handout before it is made available for participants to download or print the handouts for their use. Details will be provided in acceptance letters. Speakers who do not upload their handouts will not receive their per diems for their sessions.

Speakers must provide their presentations electronically at least 15 days before the AACC Annual Scientific Meeting begins through the online presentation management system. This allows AACC to organize all presentations in advance. Additional information will be provided in acceptance letters.

Continuing Education Credit
Sessions deemed acceptable for continuing education credit (ACCENT) must be relevant to the scope and practice of clinical laboratory science and may include education, supervision, and management. Sessions deemed acceptable for continuing medical education (CME) credit must be relevant to the needs of physician audiences and must conform with ACCME criteria for planning and implementing educational sessions for physicians.

Sessions must:

  • Demonstrate a healthcare problem, issue, or change exists that impacts laboratory medicine professionals
  • Contain at least two clear and measurable educational objectives
  • Feature content appropriate for the educational level of the intended audience
  • Allocate a reasonable amount of time to accomplish suggested content and educational objectives
  • Provide instruction by competent and qualified faculty
  • Emphasize education and must not promote any commercial interests or their products
  • Be evaluated as to quality and achievement of objectives

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Planning Educational Sessions
To focus your session, ask these questions:

  • What healthcare problems, issues, or changes will be discussed in this session?
  • How do these issues impact professionals working in laboratory medicine?
  • How will the session enable to learners to address and overcome these issues?

Q: How do I write an acceptable learning objective?

A: Simply have the result in mind. Decide what participants must be able to do after the session that they could not do before. What are the solutions to the identified problems? How can participants implement these solutions when they get back to the workplace?

For example, suppose your audience says they don 't understand why labs turn out erroneous results. From talking with them beforehand, you 've learned that they are unfamiliar with factors that cause variation in lab results before the sample even gets to the laboratory. You decide to teach about factors that cause pre-analytic variation. Your material should cover factors such as diurnal variation, physiological stress due to posture, sample collect ion and storage or other causes.

How will participants be able to apply what they learn in this session? What level of thinking must they operate on when they get back to their jobs? What will they be able to do after the presentation that they could not do before? This becomes your learning objective.

Some examples:
  • After a presentation on pre-analytic variation, clinical laboratorians will be able to set up procedures to control post-collection factors that adversely affect the stability of analytes.
  • After a presentation on how collection methods can affect erroneous results, the students can select collection methods that will minimize the possibility of introducing bias in laboratory results.
Learning objectives must contain:
  • verbs showing what students can do
  • verbs indicating the level of thought required to perform that action



RecognitionList, state, identify
UnderstandingDescribe, diagram components, etc.
ExplanationExplain, define, interpret, discuss
AnalysisCompare, contrast, differentiate, analyze
SynthesisChoose, evaluate

Unacceptable learning objectives contain:
  • Action verbs, and do not begin with understand, know, learn, see, review,
  • statements that demonstrate what the instructor rather than the students will do
  • any objectives that is measurable but that your presentation doesn't support.
Q: Inter-activity is ''big in adult education but I’m not comfortable facilitating group discussions. Is lecturing bad?"

A: Lecture format is acceptable and appropriate for disseminating a large amount of information, but not for retaining it. If you want students to learn, remember, and apply what was covered, you need to give them opportunities to practice using the information. Research shows the only difference between those who change their behavior due to new learning and those who don't is confidence in performing the new behavior. Confidence comes from practice.

Incorporate techniques that let students manipulate material, thereby increasing their retention level. For example:

  • Provide handouts that contain a summary of the presentation content. As you speak, have students fill in notes from what you say.
  • Use a midpoint summary. Halfway through the presentation, ask students to stop and write three things they will be able to apply on the job.
  • Ask students to pair up with the person next to them. Have each one write three questions about the material covered. Then have them answer each other 's questions. These techniques allow you to present a great deal of material and at the same time provide time and practice for the students.
Q: How do I select "appropriate, educational methods?

A: Selecting appropriate educational methods means looking for congruence between learning objectives and presentation format. The means should facilitate the outcome.

If your objective is to have students learn how to construct a laboratory budget, then provide time for students to draft a budget using pre-designed criteria.

If your objective is to have students list factors responsible for pre-analytic variation in test results, have them write such a list as a mid- or end-point summary of your presentation.

If your objective is to have students analyze and interpret cardiac markers, present them with lab results in a case study format.

If your objective is to have students diagram the components of a lipid molecule, provide a blank illustration and have them label the components as you discuss the labeled slide that illustrates these concepts.

Realize each learner prefers a different style. Remember to incorporate techniques for those who learn by seeing (visual learners), by hearing (auditory learners), and by doing (kinesthetic learners).

Q: How do I assess if the participants have achieved the learning objective?

A: You could test, but in adult learning that is usually counterproductive. Try instead to build evaluation methods into the presentation itself. Consider your objectives and make sure your teaching methods are congruent with them (see previous Q&A). Other techniques include:

  • written exercise
  • simulation
  • discussion
  • sketch
  • draw
  • practice teach
  • list
  • recite
  • model
  • solve a problem
  • construct
  • illustrate
Learners who are advised of learning outcomes and told they will be required to demonstrate each outcome tend to become more actively involved in the learning process. Feedback provided during these active demonstrations is a primary source for building learner confidence, a critical factor in transferring learning beyond the training room.