2021 Call for Input

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Criteria for Postgraduate Course Proposals

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General Information

Postgraduate Courses: One-day sessions held on the Friday and Saturday preceding the International Conference. The courses are intended to be systematic in design, and an opportunity for a more comprehensive, organized review of knowledge, rather than of recent advances only. Separate registration and an additional fee are required of those who wish to attend postgraduate courses. Postgraduate courses are eligible for corporate support (if accepted by ATS), but corporate support is not required.

Formats: There are 2 Postgraduate Course formats:

  1. Postgraduate Course (Didactic): includes didactic lectures and general discussions presented with the aid of PowerPoint slides. Proposers are encouraged to incorporate active learning techniques (such as ARS), panel discussions, small group discussions, and breakout sessions.
  2. Postgraduate Course (Skills-Based): didactic lectures combined with practical skills segments providing the learner with hands-on skill learning of equipment and procedures. Over 50% of the course curriculum must be allocated to hands-on skills.

Developing Your Proposal

The following elements should be addressed in your proposal:

  1. Courses must be presented in an organized and inclusive body of knowledge. Accepted concepts and information are to be provided, as opposed to presenting narrow research interests. It is encouraged that, whenever applicable, specific effort should be directed to integrating basic science and clinical aspects of the topic.
  2. Chosen topics should meet current needs of the medical/scientific community, and deal with information of considerable interest to practicing physicians and/or biomedical scientists.
  3. The scientific and educational content must include a review of knowledge, translation of research into practice, diversity of speakers and an international balance.
  4. The ATS seeks diversity among faculty by institution, gender, ethnicity, career level, and international representation.
  5. A planned program must include a complete agenda, clearly defined target audience, comprehensive needs assessment, proposed speakers, and lengths of talks. It is not acceptable to list “speaker to be announced” or to include the name of a single speaker multiple times. Please be sure to include time for breaks and lunch.
  6. As the proposer, you are required to review the ATS Privacy Policy and agree to allow the collection and use of your personal information in accordance with the Privacy Policy. You are further required to confirm that you have received permission from the proposed chairs and speakers to provide their personal information.
  7. Perceived conflict of interest pertaining to any of the proposed faculty, including the proposed chair(s), must be disclosed consistent with the ATS COI Policy for Official ATS Activities and the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) requirements for accredited CME activities. If accepted, all chairs and faculty are required to complete an online COI disclosure of financial relationships, or no relationship, with commercial interests as defined by the ACCME. In addition, relationships with the tobacco industry or companies engaged in the manufacture, promotion and sales of a cannabis product consumable by inhalation must be disclosed in accordance with the ATS Policy on Tobacco Involvment and the ATS Policy on Association with the Cannabis Industry. Individuals disclosing a current (past 12 months) relationship will be ineligible to chair or present (Note: if relationship is limited to personal financial holdings, divestiture at least 30 days prior to the conference is permitted.)
  8. Maintenance of Certification (MOC): It is important to ATS to award MOC points for selected Postgraduate Courses presented at the International Conference. You must indicate if the course should be included in the MOC module. If chosen by the Education Committee, your course would be expected to provide a minimum of 12 questions based on session content. The chair will be responsible for facilitating this process. Please see the MOC Instructions for more information.
  9. Learning Methods: Various educational methods may be employed, including lecture, PowerPoint presentations, other audio-visual presentations, case presentations and live hands-on skills-based education. Case discussion, breakout sessions, and panel discussions are encouraged, when appropriate, rather than a full day of straight didactic lectures. All speakers must remain available for scheduled question periods. Demonstrations using live animals are subject to the rules and regulations of the convention center.
  10. Special Set-Ups: If the course requires any special set-up, equipment, room layout or breakout rooms, you must indicate this on the proposal form. You must also indicate if the course will include the demonstration of equipment, outline the equipment and any supplemental needs on the proposal form.

    Special requests need to be approved by ATS staff on a case by case basis and may result in an increase in course registration fees to cover additional costs.

    Failure to include special room needs, equipment needs or audio-visual needs during the proposal stage may result in the rejection of the course.

  11. Skills-Based Education: Course proposals that include a live hands-on practical-skills portion requiring the procurement of special equipment and supplies must provide a preliminary list of equipment needed, possible vendors, and the number of demonstration stations required in the proposal.

    IMPORTANT: The procurement of all equipment for hands-on skills-based education must be organized by the ATS. Course chairs and faculty are not permitted to make procurement arrangements.

    The review committees strongly recommend that courses incorporating a hands-on portion begin with the didactic lectures and offer the skills-based portion in the afternoon. These courses should also have a maximum registration capacity of 60 attendees to ensure that each attendee will have an acceptable hands-on experience.
  12. ATS seeks a diversity of topics at the International Conference and to minimize redundancies. Postgraduate courses held in conjunction with the International Conference should not duplicate sessions planned for the Conference, and should have attributes unique to the needs of ATS International Conference attendees, rather than merely duplicate programs held at other venues. The ATS may also call for proposals covering special topics.
  13. Course Cancellation:
    • The ATS reserves the right to re-review or cancel postgraduate courses where significant changes have been made in course content and faculty subsequent to acceptance.
    • The ATS reserves the right to cancel postgraduate courses that do not meet a minimum registration.
  14. Accepted courses will be held at the convention center or headquarter hotel and room assignments will be determined by ATS. The ATS will not consider proposals for courses to be held at other sites.

After Your Proposal Is Approved

Course Book
A virtual course book of pertinent material must be developed by the course organizer and faculty. An introduction is encouraged, especially one with an overview of the basic science issues and their relationship to clinical aspects of the topic, where relevant.  Each faculty member will need to provide a summary of his/her presentation with copies of pertinent graphic slides or PowerPoint presentations.

Other material may be added if necessary.

Practical Skills Education
The chairs of Skills-Based courses are required to work with ATS staff to organize the course set up and procure the appropriate equipment to be used at the course by supplying the following:

  1. A detailed equipment list along with a list of possible vendors
  2. A floor plan of the skills-based stations
  3. A description of each station including the faculty assigned to each
  4. The number of participants per station
  5. The plan for station rotation

Chairs and faculty are expected to attend a pre-course orientation on the day prior to the course to go over the skills-based program and layout, and review the use of the equipment.

Enduring Materials
ATS may also arrange additional ATS CME enduring materials (such as a CD-ROM, or archived webcasts made available through the ATS website, that captures the session audio and slides, or a printed CME monograph or newsletter). ATS accepts educational grants from industry to support the production of these media as a means of disseminating educational content beyond the session itself.