AMERSA seeks abstract submissions of recent substance abuse research and substance abuse education innovations.

Abstracts for the 2014 AMERSA National Conference may be submitted to one of three categories:

  1. Research – These abstracts report the results of original research and must include methods, data and analyses.
  2. Program and Curricula Evaluation – These abstracts report the results of evaluations of innovative programs and/or education curricula and must include methods, data and analyses.
  3. Clinical Case Presentations – These abstracts describe an illustrative case that reinforces specific learning objectives for substance abuse and medical education.

Abstract presentation formats include:

Oral presentations are clustered into concurrent theme-based 90-minute sessions with each abstract presentation ten minutes in length followed by an additional 5 minute comment/question period. These will be scheduled over Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
Poster presentations are displayed during a 90-minute evening poster reception with the attendant author(s) available to discuss and present the poster. These will be scheduled Thursday evening.
Abstracts awards are presented to the three best abstracts. To receive an award, authors must give an oral presentation at a special plenary session on Saturday morning.

Note that some program or curriculum innovations may best be presented as a workshop, not abstract, in order to capitalize on time for detailed discussion or skills development. See the CALL FOR SKILL-BASED WORKSHOPS section.

ONLY COMPLETE ABSTRACTS WILL BE CONSIDERED FOR PRESENTATION. ABSTRACTS DESCRIBING PROJECTS WHICH ARE IN PROGRESS AND LACK DATA ANALYSIS AND RESULTS WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED. To be considered complete, abstracts must describe a completed research project, including descriptions of methods, results and conclusions; a completed program and curricula evaluation abstract, including evaluation methods, findings and conclusions; or a clinical case, with specific learning objectives that are generalizable and supported by the case.

Abstracts which meet these criteria and are accepted for presentation will be published in AMERSA’s peer-reviewed journal, Substance Abuse. Abstract authors are also encouraged to submit a manuscript of their work for consideration for publication in Substance Abuse.

Submission Instructions:
1) Abstracts must be submitted online at
2) Abbreviations within the body should be kept to a minimum and must be defined upon first use in the abstract by placing the abbreviation in parenthesis after the represented full word or phrase. Non-proprietary (generic) drug names are required at first mention of the drug.
3) Abstract length: The entire abstract, including title, authors, presenting author’s institutional affiliation(s), city, state, and text, including any tables or figures should be a maximum of 350 words. It is your responsibility to verify compliance with the length requirement. Abstracts longer than the 350 words risk being disqualified from judging or publication in Substance Abuse and will be penalized during consideration for awards.

4) Abstract structure
Research Presentation:  Research abstracts include the following headings:

  • Background - describes the research context
  • Objective - describes the research objective
  • Methods - describes research methodology used
  • Results - summarizes findings in sufficient detail to support the conclusions
  • Conclusions - states the conclusions drawn from results, including implications. It is not acceptable to state "The results will be discussed" or "Other data will be presented"

Program and Curricula Evaluation: These abstracts include the following headings:

  • Background - describes the educational or programmatic context
  • Objective - describes the program or curricular objective
  • Methods - describes the target population, program or curricular content, and evaluation method
  • Results - summarizes evaluation, including outcome data
  • Conclusions - states the conclusions drawn from results, including the applicability of the program/curriculum.

Clinical Case Presentation: These abstract include the following headings:

  • Background - describes the case context
  • Learning Objectives - states learning expectations from the case presentation
  • Case Presentation - summarizes the case
  • Discussion - summarizes salient facts/teaching points from review of the case and the relevant literature

Review Process: The Abstract Review Committee is made up of volunteer AMERSA members and includes representation from many AMERSA professional disciplines, such as: nurses, physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers. The Committee is blinded to authors and institutions. Each committee member will rank each abstract in the following four categories:
1. Importance to fields of substance abuse and medical education
2. Focus and clarity of presentation
3. Quality of methods and
4. Innovation

Acceptance for presentation will be determined based on Committee rankings and consideration of time and space for oral and poster presentation formats. Authors may indicate their own presentation format preference at the time of submission.

In order to encourage broad and timely dissemination of research results and innovative programs, abstracts presented elsewhere are acceptable for submission and presentation at the AMERSA Annual National Conference PROVIDED that:
1) a manuscript reporting the same or similar results has not been accepted for publication,
2) the previous presentation occurred within the last 12 months of the AMERSA Conference abstract submission deadline, May 31st, 2014.
3) the abstract was not previously presented at an AMERSA Conference.
All applicants will be notified of review decisions by July 1st. Please direct further questions to the Abstract Co-Chairs, Carol Dawson Rose at or Sion Kim Harris at

Awards: The Abstract Award Committee, consisting of the Abstract Chair and two AMERSA Board Members, will select three of the highest rated abstracts, to receive awards at the Best Abstracts Plenary on Saturday morning.  To receive an award, the presenting author must present the abstract orally Saturday morning.  Presenting authors will receive, complementary conference registration.

Online Abstract Submission 2014