As they evaluate submissions to your association’s events, are reviewers on the same page? Do they know exactly what you’re looking for in a potential speaker or poster presenter? How can you be sure that each reviewer is approaching the submissions the way your association prefers?
While any two reviewers may judge the same paper differently, you can minimize the confusion and give your reviewers clear direction when you create scoring criteria. Some abstract management systems, like Omnipress’, allow the administrator (that’s you!) to set up scoring criteria and forms to make your expectations clear.
The reviewers are the subject matter experts; they can look at a paper and know if the research is compelling or the thesis has something new to say in the industry. But do they know that you’re looking to focus on a particular specialty or method this year? Are they aware of what topics were covered in previous years? Is there a certain point of view you’d like to highlight?
Keep reviewers in the loop by creating forms and scoring criteria to reflect the association’s mission and focus. Reviewers come to the table ready to help and their job is not an easy or straightforward one. Surely they appreciate any direction you provide.
Your annual event runs more smoothly when everyone knows the score, from your convention center contact to your presenters. Clear communication leads to better results, and that begins with your collection process. When reviewers know what’s expected of them and what type of presentations the association would welcome, your event will be closer to what you envision and what your members need.