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  • Tips for Attendees

    Getting the Most Out of Your Conference Experience

    Will 2019 be your first time at PRIM&R's AER or SBER Conference? Have you attended our conference(s) before, but want to know what's new in 2019? There's a lot happening at this event, and knowing what to expect in advance can help you make the most of your conference experience.

    Before the Conference

    When registering, you have the option to pre-register for the sessions you'd like to attend. Once on-site, you can attend sessions other than those you pre-registered for, but if there are any sessions you don't want to miss, or if a session has a “pre-reg” icon, we highly encourage pre-registering; PRIM&R reserves the right to check names at the door of any session that fills up or is pre-registration only. In those cases, priority will be given to pre-registered attendees.

    To decide which sessions you want to attend, review the SBER19 and AER19 agendas and note the following:

    • SBER19 (our one-day, SBER-focused conference) and the AER19 Preconference Programs take place concurrently on November 17; attendees must choose either SBER19 or a preconference program. Pre-registration is required for these events.
    • Breakout sessions at SBER19 and AER19 are smaller and focused on specific topics, strategies, approaches, and best practices; they offer more time for in-depth discussion, interaction with peers, and questions. Breakout sessions are grouped by series (A through C or E). Attendees choose one session per series.
    • Panel sessions at SBER19 and AER19 are higher level sessions focused on complex ethical issues and timely topics. At SBER19, there is one panel session. At AER19, panels are run concurrently. Attendees choose one panel per series.
    • Session icons help you navigate the agendas; an icon key is provided on the left side of the agenda. Sessions new in 2019 are denoted with a "New" icon and sessions eligible for CIP credit are denoted with a "CIP" icon.
    • Basic sessions introduce, explain, and illustrate basic concepts and principles, regulations and policies, or best practices relevant to a topic for those who have little or no prior knowledge of it.
    • Advanced sessions assume mastery of basic concepts and in-depth knowledge of an area and robust set of skills required for addressing difficult problems in that area. Attendees are expected to have sufficient experience and understanding to actively contribute to the discussion.
    • Sessions that do not have a learning level are intended for all audiences.

    Preparing to Attend

    • Print the schedule of sessions you selected during registration; you can do this by printing the receipt that's emailed to you upon registering, or by logging in to our website and selecting the "My Transactions" page. From there, select "View My Agenda" under the 2019 SBER and AER Conferences row.
    • To add sessions to your personalized agenda if you forgot to select them when registering online, log in to our website and select the "My Transactions" page. From there, select the "View" link under the "Registration" column of the 2019 SBER and AER Conferences row, and select the "Add Tracks/ Sessions" link. You can also stop by the Help Desk on-site and, if there's space available, we will accommodate you.
    • Review the Conference Attendee Newsletters we'll send before the conference. These emails will direct you to information about late-breaking changes to the agendas and other important logistical information.
    • We will let you know when handouts are online in a Conference Attendee Newsletter. You should download and print any handouts via the online agenda at that time. Please note that not all handouts will be available before the conference (dependent on speakers).
    • As you plan your visit to Boston, check out for more information on the area and local activities. The Hynes Convention Center is located in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood, near shopping, many delicious dining options, and more! There are also several nearby public transit options if you'd like to explore more of the city (the convention center is only one subway stop away from Fenway Park).

    On-Site Events, Meals, and Networking

    Past attendees tell us how much conference content is enhanced by conversations with other attendees. Keep an eye out for networking lunches, receptions, etc. in the conference agenda (note: some special events require pre-registration; sign up during online registration).

    • Are you a first-time attendee? If so, sign up for the Continental Breakfast to Welcome First-Time Attendees, which will give you the chance to ask questions about the conference, PRIM&R membership, and other PRIM&R programming and resources.
    • As you plan your meals during the conference, please note that: registration for SBER19 and the AER19 Preconference Programs on November 17 include lunch only; registration for AER19 includes lunch on November 18, breakfast on November 19, and Closing General Session Luncheon on November 20 (those wishing to attend this session should pre-register so we can accurately plan for food). Other meals are on your own; visit our Local Dining Options webpage to explore dining options in the area
    • Meet AER19 Supporters and Exhibitors and learn about their important services.
    • Visit the AER19 Poster Gallery to learn more about innovative and important work in the field, as well as the implementation of programs to improve the functioning of IRBs/HRPPs. Also, don’t miss select poster presentations in the Industry Experts Theater (see the AER19 agenda).
    • Participate in Federal Agencies/Accrediting Body Office Hours to ask questions of representatives from federal agencies and/or the accrediting body. See the conference agenda for times and location.
    • Join fellow attendees for a morning run! PRIM&R volunteer Carole Krus will be leading a 3-4 mile route November 17-20 at 6:30 AM. The group will meet on Dalton Street outside the Sheraton Hotel and follow a route through the Boston Common and past historic sights. Please email Carole Krus at to join.

    After the Conference

    Continuing education credits earned via attendance at this year's events can be used for:

    • Certified IRB Professional (CIP®) recertification: AER19 Preconference Program and SBER19/AER19 sessions eligible for CIP recertification credit are marked with a "CIP" icon. Learn more about recertification.
    • PRIM&R's Certificate in the Foundations of Human Subjects Protections: The AER Conference counts as a core requirement and the SBER Conference and AER Preconference Programs satisfy elective requirements for this certificate. If you're not eligible for the CIP® credential, or you're looking for another way to highlight your professional development efforts on your resume, consider signing up for the certificate program.
    • Self-reporting to other professional associations: Use the Certificates of Attendance from this year's events to self-report to other professional associations. Please contact those associations to determine whether credits earned at these events are eligible and, if so, how many.

    Certificates of Attendance for this year’s events will be available at the end of the evaluation for each offering.