A group working together at a desk

Joining instructions and FAQs

On this page you will find the following sections as you scroll:

  • Joining instructions for the virtual and in-person conference streams
  • Information about Newcastle
  • FAQs including technical questions and room information
  • Conference role information
  • Virtual stream specific technical questions
  • Withdrawal and refund information

Joining instructions – virtual conference

Joining conference sessions

Anyone registered for either the virtual conference stream or in-person conference will be sent the Zoom links for the virtual stream by 8.30am on Tuesday 14 June. These will arrive via the email address you used during your conference registration. Please do not forward these on to other delegates or elsewhere as this may cause you a problem when joining. Instead, tell anyone who has a problem to visit the helpdeskAlternatively, they can email conferences@bisa.ac.uk.

Virtual conference helpdesk

Visit the virtual helpdesk (from Tuesday 14 June at 8.45am)

On Tuesday 14 June from 8.45am to 5pm we are running a dedicated virtual helpdesk (opens a Zoom meeting) where you can come to speak to someone straight away. This will be the fastest way to get help and will have closed captions. Alternatively, you can email conferences@bisa.ac.uk. We will monitor this account, but you will receive help faster by visiting the helpdesk.

The desk will also be open on Friday 10 June from 2.30 to 4.30pm (UK time). This is a good time to test your Zoom is working properly in advance of the conference.

Joining instructions – in-person conference

Once you arrive at the Civic Centre in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne you will need to go straight to the registration desk to collect your name badge. The registration desk will be open from 8am to 6.30pm each day.

Timings and room locations of all panels, roundtables and other sessions can be found in the conference programme. If you have any questions please do ask the registration desk team. We will have several conference team members wearing orange t-shirts who will be able to help.

Accommodation and travel

All information about accommodation and travel can be found on our transport and accommodation page.

What else is there to do in Newcastle? Where can I get my morning coffee? Which restaurants would you recommend?

Our fantastic conference team who all reside in Newcastle have put together a ‘Newcastle survival guide’ covering all these questions and more.



Where can I find the conference programme?

Click through to the in-person programme and the virtual programme. You can also generate and save or print your own personalised schedule for each.

How do I change the title/abstract of my paper?

Due to the large number of paper and panel submissions, it is not possible for us to respond to individual requests to make changes to titles of papers. However, it is generally accepted practice for speakers to inform the audience in the room of any title changes just prior to presenting.

I'm presenting or speaking at a panel, roundtable or other conference session, do I need to arrive early?

If you’re an active participant in a virtual conference session, please try to arrive a minimum of 10 minutes before the advertised start time. This will allow you time to meet the other participants, the host and chair, and to ensure your equipment is working, such as sound, video, any powerpoint slides you wish to share with the audience. There is usually less time between in-person sessions so please arrive as soon as you can after the previous panel to ensure you are set up.

Can I use PowerPoint slides, video, music etc?

Yes, each room at the Civic Centre in Newcastle will be equipped with IT facilities and there will be wifi throughout venue. For ease of mind, you may wish to bring any files or PowerPoint slides on a memory stick in case of disruption. You should also upload them to your emails or another cloud-based area you can easily access.

We advise against using your own laptop to present, but if you do wish to do this please note that facilities for connecting are limited HDMI port. If your laptop doesn’t have a HDMI port, or you are using a Mac, then you will either need to provide your own cable, or use the existing facilities provided in each room.

Will there be anyone at my panel who can help me if I have technical issues while presenting?

Yes, the Civic Centre has an AV team. However, we recommend you set up and test your powerpoint slides or other materials prior to your panel session to make sure they work.

Does the Civic Centre have Wifi?

Yes, the Civic Centre has Wifi in all areas, both on its own Wifi network and a gov.uk network. You will find signs around the Centre with the access details.

Is there an area where I can sit and work whilst I’m not attending panels?

Yes, there will be a number of tables and chairs in the banqueting hall, as well as seating in various common areas across the Centre. You can also use the University’s Robinson Library (turn right out of the Civic Centre on the main road and it’s two minutes up the slope – the brick building at the top). Please show your SCONUL card if you have one, or your delegate badge if not. Wifi is Eduroam.

If the weather is nice there is also a garden outside the Civic Centre.

Where can I network or meet people?

There are scheduled refreshment and lunch breaks each day in the banqueting hall. The conference reception at Wylam Brewery on Wednesday evening is also a good place to meet other delegates, as it the guided 5km Toon run on Thursday morning. If you are part of a working group they may be holding a meeting or AGM (see our highlights page for more details on all of these events).

I want to see a particular speaker, how do I find out when/where are they speaking?

The easiest way to find a particular speaker is to find them on our delegate list (coming soon!) which is alphabetical. Alternatively, you can go to the conference programme and use ‘Ctrl’ plus ‘f’ to open a search box where you can type a name or other keyword.

Is there a designated quiet room?

Yes, there is a designated quiet room – the Grainger room on the first floor. This will be open from 8.30am to 6.30pm on all three days of the conference.

Will there be a prayer space?

We have arranged lunchtime access for Muslim delegates to the Newcastle University prayer space. You just need to show your conference badge to gain admission. It’s two minutes away from the Student Union building (where many of our conference sessions are taking place) in King George VI building. This film shows the location.

If you need to use it in the evening you will need to phone the security number 0191 208 6817 first, and explain you are a conference delegate at a University conference.

What are you doing to mitigate the risks of the spread of Covid-19?

We acknowledge that the rules and regulations frequently change in the UK. For the most up to date guidance visit https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus. There will be hand sanitiser stations around the Civic Centre.

If you test positive during or just after attending the conference please do fill in our online form. Here you can discreetly tell us which panels you attended, and in turn we can email attendees to recommend they get tested.

Conference roles

Please download our handy guide to conference roles, particularly if you are chairing a session.


Extra information for conference chairs

If you’ve chaired panels and roundtables before, you’ll know that one of the key responsibilities of the chair is time management. It’s essential that all sessions finish on time at BISA 2022 to avoid disruption to the next block of panels androundtables and to ensure there is sufficient time to travel between locations. Please download and read the guide to conference roles above before chairing your first session.

If you’ve not chaired a panel or roundtable previously, you may wish to find out more about the role. We recommend the following blog posts.

Should I get in touch with the speakers for the event I’m chairing in advance?

Please do! On a practical level, this allows for speaking time limits and order of appearance to be decided ahead of time, while also facilitating introductions before the conference, which helpspanel participants when they prepare their presentations in advance.

Do I need to say anything specific to kick off the event?

Please let everyone know the title of the panel/roundtable so that people are sure they are in the correct room.

At the virtual conference each session will have a session host who will let you know if there is anything else to mention. This person will also be in charge of letting people into the Zoom room, allowing screen sharing etc.

Virtual stream specific questions

How do I join a virtual conference session?

Anyone registered for either the virtual conference stream or the in-person conference will be sent the Zoom links for the virtual stream by 8.30am on Tuesday 14 June. These will arrive via the email address you used during your conference registration. You can join and leave sessions as you like.

I'm a panellist or other conference speaker do I need a separate joining link for the virtual stream?

In most cases no, you can join with the links that will be sent to all conference delegates. The host will have a list of speakers for your panel session and will admit you to the Zoom room early (assuming you arrive a minimum of 10 minutes before your session as mentioned above).

Can I use powerpoint slides, video, music etc?

For the virtual conference, please let your session host  know your plans when you join the panel. The default setting will be that you can’t share your screen (to prevent non-speakers from interrupting your presentation), but your host will allow you to do this at the appropriate moment.

Can I use Zoom functions such as polls?

Yes, please do make use of these features as you wish.

Will there be anyone at my panel who can help me if I have technical issues while presenting?

During the conference virtual stream, each panel will have a session host who can help with reminding you how to share your screen or use other Zoom functions. They can also help troubleshoot technical problems, although if the problem is at your end there will be limits to how much we can help. We therefore strongly recommend testing your Zoom functionality during our practice session on Friday 10 June at 2.30-4pm (UK time). There you can check things like your sound, view, bandwidth and more.

What are the minimum requirements to operate Zoom for the virtual stream?

You’ll need:

  • An internet connection – broadband wired or wireless (3G or 4G/LTE)
  • Speakers and a microphone – built-in, USB plug-in, or wireless Bluetooth
  • A webcam or HD webcam - built-in, USB plug-in etc

You can find more information, for example supported operating systems and browsers, on Zoom’s ‘System requirements’ page

Some organisations block employees from downloading the Zoom desktop client or app, but this should not cause you a problem as you can use Zoom in browser without downloading it.

My camera isn’t working

Firstly, check your camera is switched on and that you have enabled video in the bottom left of your Zoom window. Next, make sure that all other programs that utilize the camera are not using the camera or are closed.  If this doesn’t work,restart your computer.

More information about Zoom and the video/camera function can be found on Zoom’s troubleshooting page.

I can't hear anything, or you can’t hear me

When you join a Zoom meeting you should see a ‘test speaker and microphone’ button which we recommend you use when you first join the virtual stream on the day. You’ll be able to check and/or choose the speaker and microphone that’s being used. If you are using the correct speaker and microphone but are still having problems, check the privacy settings for them.

You can find more information on audio settings on Zoom’s FAQ page.

I didn't receive the joining links, help!

The Zoom links should be sent to the email address you used to register for the conference at around 8.30am on Tuesday 14 June. If you can’t find them in your inbox, check your spam. If they are not there, please visit the helpdesk as soon as you can and they will be able to check your registration and send you a copy.

My bandwidth is poor

We recommend you try a test your access to the Zoom meeting before the conference takes place. You can join our test on Friday 10 June anytime between 2.30 and 4pm (UK time). Zoom requires internet bandwidth of up to 3 Mbps to let you use all its functions and features, including video calls.

The bandwidth used by Zoom will be optimized for the best experience based on your network. It will automatically adjust for 3G, WiFi, or wired environments. If your connection speed drops below a certain threshold, your video quality will be automatically adjusted to keep you in the meeting as far as possible.

If you are experiencing a poor-quality video/audio, the following can help to reduce data usage and improve your experience:

  • Leave video off when you don't need it
  • Turn off HD video
  • When you screen share, only share as long as absolutely necessary.
  • Use online collaborative documents rather than screen sharing
  • Mute your audio when not speaking.

Withdrawal and refunds

I want to withdraw from the conference and have not registered/paid to attend. How can I do this?

If you can no longer attend the conference, please email conferences@bisa.ac.uk putting 'withdraw' clearly in the subject of the email. We ask that you notify the conference programme chair as early as possible so we may make adjustments to the programme as necessary.

I want to withdraw from the conference but have already registered/paid to attend. Can I have a refund?

You will still need to let us know as per the previous question, however whether you are able to claim a refund depends when you registered. Our policy, as stated at the point of sale, is that you may claim a full refund for 14 days following payment. Please email our office: office@bisa.ac.uk. After this period no refunds can be given except in the pandemic-related circumstances listed below.

What if the in-person conference can't go ahead due to new pandemic-related restrictions?

In the event that the F2F conference is cancelled due to UK government restrictions, the whole conference will go virtual and all registered participants to the F2F conference will be transferred.

What if the country from which I am travelling has new restrictions preventing me from travelling?

In the event that a non-UK participant is unable to travel due to their own government restrictions, full refunds will be given up to 1 June 2022.

What if I can no longer attend due to testing positive for Covid-19?

In the event that a UK based participant contracts Covid-19 within 10 days of the event taking place and is therefore unable to travel we are unfortunately unable to offer a refund.

In the event that a non-UK based participant contracts Covid-19 within 10 days of the event taking place and is therefore unable to travel we are unable to offer a refund.

In-person or virtual?

Do I have to decide now whether I want to attend face-to-face or just virtually?

Yes, you will need to submit your abstract, panel or roundtable to your chosen stream. You will be unable to change your mind at a later date.

Can my panel have a mix of face-to-face and virtual participants?

No, you will need to choose whether you want to submit a face-to-face or virtual panel.

Will I get the same conference experience if I attend the virtual portion only?

Our 2022 conference is predominately a face-to-face conference. Events such as the conference reception, social events, keynotes and prize giving will take place face-to-face during the main conference. Therefore, the main conference will provide a much fuller experience. The virtual stream of the conference will be for a maximum of one day (subject to demand) and will take place the day before the main conference begins. The aim is to give those who are unable to travel the chance to present, receive feedback, and exchange ideas from wherever they are in the world. The conference rates reflect this difference in experience.

Can I attend both the face-to-face and virtual conference?

If you register for either a one-day or three-day conference ticket you will be able to attend both parts of the conference. Virtual tickets do not include any access to the face-to-face conference.