Chair/Speaker Information | 2021 Congress

Thank you for agreeing to participate in our Congress and share your knowledge with the wider CNSF community!

Please watch your email for communications from the CNSF Secretariat ( regarding your session / presentation information.

The CNSF uses an online event management system - CadmiumCD's Conference Harvester™ to collect, manage and share Congress details through the 'CNSF Congress' mobile app and website.

This system will give chairs and speakers direct access to add/or amend the completeness of their session and presentation content. If you are new to the Conference Harvester, the system is task based and you will need to complete each task before the assigned due date.

Please watch your email for your 2021 CNSF Congress | Conference Harvester™ login credentials.

Questions on course scientific content or focus, please contact either:
Scientific Program Committee (SPC) Chair, Joe Megyesi: or
Vice-Chair, Gerald Pfeffer:

All other requests, please contact:
Nicole Rozak: 403-229-9544, ext. 104

Course/Session Guidelines

Carefully review the following important guidelines surrounding the development and delivery of a course/session at the CNSF Congress.


  • Every session must have a chair. A chair may also act as a speaker.

  • Chair and speaker positions are voluntary. No honorarium or expenses are paid except in special conditions listed in the course budget below.

  • Each person attending the CNSF Congress must complete the registration process. This includes invited speakers, chairpersons, and all delegates. *see below Registration.

  • By agreeing to participate at the Congress, you agree to meet CNSF guidelines, complete all tasks and deadlines provided and outlined within the Conference Harvester system.

  • If you are speaking in 2 sessions, please ensure you use different content and avoid duplication.

  • All courses are 2.5 hours, except Clinical Case Studies on Monday and the Hot Topics session on Covid-19 on Thursday, which are 2 hours.

  • When planning a session, we encourage a variety of formats including case discussions and workshops. Should you adopt the traditional format, consisting of invited speakers who each lecture on specific topics, please maintain the following ratios:

    • 1-2 hour sessions – 2-3 speakers
    • 2.5 hour sessions – up to 4 speakers

    For an Interactive Workshop-Style format, which could require more speakers, please discuss with the scientific program committee chair first. *see below Alternative Formats.

  • As the Congress is accredited Section 1 Learning Activity with the Royal College, sessions must have at least 25% interactive content. At a minimum, this may take the form of formal question-and-answer periods during the session. *see below Interactivity.

  • It is the responsibility of the chair to recruit speakers for their session and to communication these guidelines to all potential speakers.

  • Chair's are responsible to confirm their speakers' participation and completeness of presentation materials.

  • The session chair will introduce each speaker by title, name and affiliation.

  • The Chair is responsible to maintain the course duration within the allotted time, including time required for discussions / questions and answers.

  • At the end of the course/session, chairs are asked to remind the audience to fill in the 'Specific Course Evaluation' survey.

  • Speakers will be invited into the Conference Harvester system after the chair confirms their 'agenda' presentation outline and 'speakers list' tasks.

  • It is the responsibility of all speakers to complete their own list of tasks.

  • Speakers will be asked to make their Slides / Course Notes available to Congress delegates through the Conference Harvester 'upload' task. Password protected and viewable through the Congress App/Website as a pdf link alongside their presentation title. *see below Course Notes.

  • Each room will be equipped with; a laptop, LCD projector and screen, laser pointer, microphone and speakers. Additional AV requirements must be submitted by August 15, 2021 to determine if funds are available. *Requests must be emailed to 

  • Speakers 'PowerPoint' presentations need to be loaded at least 3 hours prior to the session in the Speakers Ready Room onsite.


Any changes should be announced by the chair at the beginning of the session. In the event that a scheduled presentation is cancelled, and no other speaker has been recruited to replace them, that particular time may be used for longer talks or a longer discussion period. This is at the discretion of the chair.


Each person attending the CNSF Congress must complete the registration process. This includes invited speakers, chairpersons, and all delegates.

Eligible chairs and speakers receive the day of their session free and will be emailed a discount code to attend the remainder of the Congress for $400. Make sure to use this special registration code when registering.

Information regarding the official Congress hotel and registration details will be available in June.

It is preferred that Course Chairs are a member of at least one CNSF Society (CNS, CNSS, CACN, CSCN, CSNR); however the CNSF recognizes this is not always the case or in the best interests of the Congress, particularly for chairs from outside of Canada or who are not neurosurgeons, neurologists, or neuroradiologists.

Additional speakers, do not have to be a member of CNSF. However, speakers who are Canadian neurosurgeons, neurologists, or neuroradiologists are encouraged to consider membership.

* Due to the nature of the Clinical Case Studies and Lunch 'n Learns there are no Congress registration discounts available. Chair and speakers for these sessions must register for the Congress at regular rates.

International Speakers

Any International Speakers and Delegates, hoping to attend the 2021 CNSF Congress, are strongly encouraged to consult the Government of Canada website for the latest regulations regarding entry to Canada.

Travel restrictions may change with little warning and may include mandatory quarantine, COVID-19 testing and other requirements.


  • Chair harvester tasks - May 3
  • Speaker harvester tasks - June 30
  • Registration - June, early July (early bird ends August 31)
  • Additional AV - August 15
  • Live Polling/ARS via Mobile App (interactive Q&A) - TBD
  • Agreement to Participate and Disclosures (harvester tasks) - October 24
  • Upload 'Course Notes' pdf (harvester task) - one day prior to session
  • Load 'Presentation' PowerPoint slides - 3 hrs prior to session in Speaker Ready Room onsite

Course Budget

ONLY Chairs and Speakers who are not practicing Canadian neurologists, neurosurgeons or neuroradiologists are provided economy flight and 2 nights’ accommodation.

The course budget allows for ONLY one of these speakers per Course; other special circumstances are considered such as courses developed by individuals who are not neurologists, neurosurgeons or neuroradiologists.

*Requests must be emailed to


Courses will be evaluated by Congress delegates and CNSF CPD Auditors to ensure compliance with Royal College MOC Standards.

The CNSF can provide previous Congress Evaluation Summaries for your course, if available, in order to assist with planning. Where evaluations are not available, chairs are encouraged to dialogue with the Scientific Program Committee members who were responsible for the selection of session topics.

Course Notes (PDF)

Are highly valued and always requested and sought after by Congress delegates.

You will be given direct access to upload your 'Course Notes' through the online Conference Harvester system. By uploading your slides, you agree to have them published within the 'CNSF Congress' App and Website which will be password protected and accessible by Congress delegates.

  • PDF format
  • Save file using: presentation title
  • Speaker Presentation materials can also be used instead of providing separate Course Notes
  • If submitting Journal articles or other copyrighted information, it is the responsibility of the speaker to obtain written permissions. The CNSF assumes that all materials provided have the necessary waivers. Please keep copies of waivers on file in case of audit.
  • Login and complete upload Course Notes task
  • Course Notes must be submitted - one day prior to session

Speaker Presentation (PPT)

  • Follow PowerPoint order of information listed below
  • Save file using: firstname_lastname_presentation title
  • Load your presentation in the Speaker Ready Room onsite at least 3 hours in advance of your session
  • Speakers must allow at least 25% of their presentation time for questions and feedback from the audience

PowerPoint - Order of Information:

  1. Cover Page - Title, Author Name and Affiliations – first slide
  2. Learning objectives – second side
  3. Disclosure Statement – third slide **Speakers must include a Disclosure Statement on the 3rd slide of their presentation
  4. If utilizing the Audience Response System – ‘How to access Live Poll Questions’
  5. Course materials
  6. References - if any
  7. Figures - if any

Alternative Course Presentation Formats

You may want to consider whether your course lends itself to a different format than the traditional set of back-to-back lectures. Some examples of alternative formats:

Case-based discussions. These are held in high regard by Congress delegates. If your topic is particularly clinical, consider anchoring your didactic content to clinical cases to make the clinical application of your course material more immediate. Course chairs can consider encouraging their speakers to integrate an illustrative clinical case along with their talks. Course chairs can also consider developing out a single exemplary clinical case that is woven throughout all of the talks and helps to tie them together.

Workshop formats. Workshops allow delegates to directly manipulate the information being presented to them leading to higher knowledge retention. Examples of topics that lend themselves particularly well to workshop formats include topics on methodologies such as “critical appraisal of neurosurgical literature” or on examination techniques such as “how to perform a neuro-ophthalmological exam.” In a workshop format, didactic lectures will be complemented by breakout groups with facilitators. In the first example, the facilitators would go through the exercise of critically appraising an article with small groups of delegates. In the second example, a series of stations could be set up around the room where delegates could rotate through and practice different parts of the exam with workshop facilitators.


Traditional lecture formats are acceptable and may be preferred for certain topics. However, there are methods to increase interactivity within traditional lecture formats.

At the most basic level, you should ensure that your courses contain enough time set aside for questions and answers from the audience (25%). This can either take the form of a Q&A section after each individual lecture, or a panel Q&A at the end of the entire course, or both. Speakers are encouraged to trim off some of their material if they fear there will not be sufficient time for ‘interaction’. More adventurous lecturers may want to consider incorporating “real-time” questions from the audience into their talks.

There are many “interactive classroom” strategies that can be employed to move beyond the standard Q&A. One of these is involving audience members to think actively about your material by interspersing quiz questions throughout your presentation. This format is particularly useful when coupled with case discussion. Such questions can occur with a simple show of hands, but incorporating the use of an audience response system where audience members can see their peers’ answers is a particularly useful strategy. We strongly encourage you to include audience response questions into your presentations. Please consider adding slides to your presentation that include multiple choices, true/false, or other similar questions for the audience into your presentation.

Read more on Interactive Learning in Continuing Professional Development: "at Least 25 Per Cent of Time" offered by The Royal College – CPD Activity Toolkit.