AICPA Conference Speaker Best Practices

Speaker Materials Website

AICPAConferences.com is our online portal for conference materials, archived content and live streaming.  From this site, registered attendees can access presentation materials for conferences, complete their online conference evaluations and download their official CPE transcripts.

Comprehensive Educational Material

In order to comply with the NASBA eligibility requirements for CPE, speakers are required to submit educational materials that supplement their presentation(s). We encourage you to use the AICPA PowerPoint Template when creating your presentation.

Are you Co-Presenting?

If you are co-presenting with another speaker, please connect with him or her to discuss the content of your materials and coordinate accordingly.  Please submit “one set” of Educational Materials.

Making Your Materials Count

  • Participants attending as well as those not attending your session should be able to gain value from your material.
  • Understand your audience!
  • Re-read the session description and learning objectives you submitted for the brochure or conference website.  Include the highlights you described in your description plus any new information.
  • Do not include promotional material.  These will be removed.
  • Try to include takeaways for attendees.
  • If  you are using graphs or charts, please make sure they are legible.

Tips for Creating Effective PowerPoint Slides

  • Recommended # of Slides: 25-40 PPT slides 75 - 100 min. presentation. (Avoid “Death by PPT”). 
  • Put dark text on a light background.
  • Use white space – (empty space, or margins) Leave plenty of room (margin) around each block of text.
  • Align text left or right. Centered text is harder to read and doesn't look as professional. Line up all your text to a right-hand or left-hand baseline – it will look better and be easier to follow.
  • One “concept per visual” - main concept should JUMP at audience and use bullets to summarize supporting information. Don’t use full sentences.
  • “Six by six” rule: 6 - 7 words/line x 6 – 7 lines/slide.
  • 45 words or less per slide.
  • Use only 18-48 pt font - These seem to work best.
  • Use a sans serif font for body text. Sans serifs like Arial, Helvetica, or Calibri tend to be the easiest to read on screens.
  • Avoid clutter. A headline, a few bullet points, maybe an image – anything more than that and you risk losing your audience as they sort it all out.

PowerPoint Widescreen 16:9 Templates

We have transitioned to the use of widescreen templates to meet the rising demands of high definition (HD) across multiple media platforms that our attendees use.  Widescreen provides more flexibility to our presenters while delivering high quality to our attendees.  All meeting room screens will be 16:9, suitable for widescreen viewing.  Please note, all previous 4:3 templates will no longer be accepted.  Please review these instructions for converting standard (4:3) to widescreen (16:9).  If you have any questions, or need assistance with implementing 16:9 widescreen template for your presentation, please contact your Program Manager.

Web-based Interactive Polling System

We are happy to offer the use of polling technology as a way to engage the audience.  To include polling questions in your presentation, please follow the below guidelines.

Once you have determined the questions you wish to ask of the audience, please insert slide(s) in your presentation where appropriate, to include:

  • Header: Polling Question
  • Sub-text: Question
  • Multiple Choice: Responses you’ll be asking the attendees to select from

Please inform your program manager if you are utilizing the polling feature. There will be no further action on your part once you have submitted your final presentation to us.  We will set-up your presentation and have it ready to go for you when you walk into your session room. 

During your presentation, when you reach your original polling slide, read the question to the audience. Advance to the next slide to open the poll - you should see "connecting to live content" on the screen followed by the results of the poll.

Audiovisual Information

In each session room, there will be a laptop with the presentations pre-loaded, LCD projector and screen, 1 wireless lavaliere microphone for each presenter, and a wireless mouse. Please contact your program manager if you have additional requests.