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Are there 'high impact' conferences, the same way that there are 'high impact' journals?


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Hi all!

 

Long time no post!

 

I am currently working on an undergraduate honours thesis and recently spoke to my supervisor and he thinks that, unfortunately, we won't be able to submit the thesis to a journal as a paper : (.

 

However, my supervisor and the grad student I'm working with suggested that we submit a poster. It's my first time submitting anything as a first author and I am looking through conferences that are in my area and that I might submit to...

 

I was wondering whether some conferences are 'higher impact' or 'better' to submit to than others? My thesis is on Virtual Navigation for Cognitive Remediation in Schizophrenia, in case anyone has any insight into good conferences related to the topic.

 

Any advice would be greatly appreciated : )

 

Thanks!

 

Carly

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There will be some conferences that are more popular than others and therefore you will get a lot of people looking at your poster and making comments. APA (American Psychological Association) is hosting its conference in Toronto for 2015, but the call for poster presentations has passed as of last week...

I think that SONA (Southern Ontario Neuroscience Association) might be a good venue (held at McMaster university next May-ish). It's not as popular as Society for Neuroscience, but not necessarily a bad venue.

 

I'm not sure if there are really "high impact" conferences. An undergraduate conference is little lower on the ladder than regional or national conferences, but I think the experience is invaluable no matter which conference you go to (And it goes on your CV).

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There are definitely higher and lower impact conferences within subdisciplines and the criteria are (1) do important people attend? and (2) is it hard to get in? I'm going to go out on a limb and say that by the time you graduate you should have two pages of poster presentations, so the little ones don't really matter for your CV because they fail both the above criteria, though of course they can be good experience while you're learning. I don't bother listing any presentations that were on my home campus anymore. 

 

Any way you can submit as a talk? Talks are more prestigious than posters because (1) more people will see you and (2) everyone knows the rejection rate is higher. Exclusivity = prestige is a strong heuristic. Your supervisor could say whether it's strong enough. 

 

 

 

I know you didn't ask about social but that's all I know, so I'll mention those in case there are lurkers from social.  The highest impact conferences are often but not necessarily the larger international conferences. It's not just how many people might see you, but who those people are. You want to go where the important people are. Here are some general impressions...

 

The #1: Society for Experimental Social Psychology (SESP). Talks only, no posters. Prestigious because it's small (membership by nomination), all the top people attend, and attendance requires a member sponsor. High rejection rate. You won't attend this as an undergrad and probably not as a graduate student but included for completeness.

 

The standard conference is Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP). Talks are prestigious because symposia have a rejection rate of 70% and large audiences attend. Posters are good too because lots of people are there, but the acceptance rate is 90%+ so getting in is kind of expected. SPSP also has lots of preconferences that are great to submit to because there you'l be exposed to people in your specific research area. They're also smaller so you get more attention, and many have possibilities for short grad student talks or data blitz talks (3-5 minutes).

 

In my area, there are also subdiscipline conferences like Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) and International Society for Justice Research (ISJR). Those are good because they're small and you get a chance to meet people who really care about your specific research area (if you're into social justice). Great for networking.

 

Next are regional conferences like Eastern Psychological Association and Midwestern Psychological Association. These can be worthwhile if the conference is near good universities. MPA is really great because it's in Chicago and you get people from Northwestern, Chicago, Ohio State, Michigan, Waterloo, etc., which all have really strong social programs. MPA takes talks and posters. I've never been to EPA but I think they're more oriented towards cognitive/neuro?

 

Last are big, interdisciplinary conferences like Association for Psychological Science (APS), American Psychological Association (APA), and Canadian Psychological Association (CPA). I've never attended APS but there are usually big name speakers and it looks like they attract sexy research so could be worthwhile. APA and CPA are, frankly, dominated by clinical psychologists so they're less interesting for a social person to attend. The CPA preconference is usually really interesting though, and they take posters.

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APA and CPA are definitely the big ones within psychology in North America, but the deadlines for those have passed for this year, unfortunately. If you're more in the cognition/neuroscience realm, try the Canadian Society for Brain, Behaviour, and Cognitive Science. I know this year it's in Ottawa so there still might be a chance to submit. That's pretty much the only conference in this area that I've heard of (sorry, I'm in forensics). 

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I know you didn't ask about social but that's all I know, so I'll mention those in case there are lurkers from social.

*waves*

Good info and thanks lewin! I can add that APS is a really great/fun conference - I hope to be back this spring!

Edited by VulpesZerda
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  • 4 weeks later...

There are definitely higher and lower impact conferences within subdisciplines and the criteria are (1) do important people attend? and (2) is it hard to get in? I'm going to go out on a limb and say that by the time you graduate you should have two pages of poster presentations, so the little ones don't really matter for your CV because they fail both the above criteria, though of course they can be good experience while you're learning. I don't bother listing any presentations that were on my home campus anymore. 

 

Any way you can submit as a talk? Talks are more prestigious than posters because (1) more people will see you and (2) everyone knows the rejection rate is higher. Exclusivity = prestige is a strong heuristic. Your supervisor could say whether it's strong enough. 

 

 

 

I know you didn't ask about social but that's all I know, so I'll mention those in case there are lurkers from social.  The highest impact conferences are often but not necessarily the larger international conferences. It's not just how many people might see you, but who those people are. You want to go where the important people are. Here are some general impressions...

 

The #1: Society for Experimental Social Psychology (SESP). Talks only, no posters. Prestigious because it's small (membership by nomination), all the top people attend, and attendance requires a member sponsor. High rejection rate. You won't attend this as an undergrad and probably not as a graduate student but included for completeness.

 

The standard conference is Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP). Talks are prestigious because symposia have a rejection rate of 70% and large audiences attend. Posters are good too because lots of people are there, but the acceptance rate is 90%+ so getting in is kind of expected. SPSP also has lots of preconferences that are great to submit to because there you'l be exposed to people in your specific research area. They're also smaller so you get more attention, and many have possibilities for short grad student talks or data blitz talks (3-5 minutes).

 

In my area, there are also subdiscipline conferences like Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) and International Society for Justice Research (ISJR). Those are good because they're small and you get a chance to meet people who really care about your specific research area (if you're into social justice). Great for networking.

 

Next are regional conferences like Eastern Psychological Association and Midwestern Psychological Association. These can be worthwhile if the conference is near good universities. MPA is really great because it's in Chicago and you get people from Northwestern, Chicago, Ohio State, Michigan, Waterloo, etc., which all have really strong social programs. MPA takes talks and posters. I've never been to EPA but I think they're more oriented towards cognitive/neuro?

 

Last are big, interdisciplinary conferences like Association for Psychological Science (APS), American Psychological Association (APA), and Canadian Psychological Association (CPA). I've never attended APS but there are usually big name speakers and it looks like they attract sexy research so could be worthwhile. APA and CPA are, frankly, dominated by clinical psychologists so they're less interesting for a social person to attend. The CPA preconference is usually really interesting though, and they take posters.

Did you attend the CPA-SP pre conference this past year? I was there and it was super tiny, so chances are we must have crossed paths in some way! (if you attended, that is)

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Did you attend the CPA-SP pre conference this past year? I was there and it was super tiny, so chances are we must have crossed paths in some way! (if you attended, that is)

 

Unfortunately wasn't able to make it last summer... going to three other conferences this year and eventually it's just too much travel. (And I'm from the eastern half of Canada.)

Edited by lewin
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