Speaker's Guide

Information for Speakers at KITP

About 1,000 talks are given per year at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics and our tradition at KITP is to post most of these talks online as audiovisual recordings, along with presentation slides. Our purpose is to foster scientific communication, education, and outreach. We greatly appreciate speakers for both their participation at KITP and for sharing their talks in this effort. 

Although we hope to record and post every talk at KITP, speakers may opt-out of recording, if they wish. Speakers may also request edits, or an embargo, on the recording of their talk. To opt-out or to make these requests, please contact us.

For every talk scheduled in the Main Seminar Room, Small Seminar Room, and Auditorium, a KITP staff member will arrive 5 minutes prior to the talk start time to assist speakers with setting up their presentation on the projector and wearing a wireless microphone. If you need immediate assistance with setting up between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, or to test out our equipment, please call 805-893-7340.

Terms of Use 

Speakers own their own talks. The position of KITP is that ownership and copyright of all online material – including slides, text, audio, video, and podcasts – belongs to the author. The Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics provides open access dissemination of these materials in the KITP Online Talks archive at online.kitp.ucsb.edu and registration through EZID with a Digital Object Identifier (DOI), but does not claim ownership. Any person citing these materials for scholarly purposes should provide an appropriate scholarly reference using the Digital Object Identifier (DOI) associated with the recorded talk. Any person wishing to make any other use of these materials, or wishing to redistribute them in any form for any purpose, must contact the author for permission. In particular, any commercial use of this material is forbidden without express permission of the author. (Learn more.)


We ask that speakers please wear a wireless microphone throughout their talk and to continue wearing the microphone during the Q&A session or discussion following their presentation. The microphone during daily program talks is not connected to the PA system, but it is essential to the audio for recordings. For talks given during a conference, the microphone is also amplified in the Main Seminar Room PA system. Please keep your cell phone away from the microphone, turn off your cell phone, or set it in airplane mode while giving your talk to prevent audio interference.


Each room is equipped with a projector for presenting natively through HDMI or VGA. We also have USB-C, Mini DisplayPort, and Lightning adapters for devices with those interfaces. Our projectors will auto format to display the correct resolution and aspect ratios of your slides. However, please be mindful that your slides do not contain material along the edges or far corners of the slides. 

Please submit your presentation slides for us to post alongside your talk at your earliest convenience. We prefer PDF, but we accept almost every file format – including PowerPoint, Keynote, LibreOffice, and Google Slides, as well as video file formats. More information on how to submit your slides can be found in your orientation packet.

Speakers may also utilize blackboards in their talks — the Main Seminar Room, Small Seminar Room, and Auditorium are all equipped with blackboards and supplied with chalk.

If you may need to borrow a KITP laptop to use for giving your presentation, contact the KITP Help Desk (or call 805-893-7340) to request a loan.


The Main Seminar Room (room 1003), located first on the left side of the hall at the main entrance in Kohn Hall, is a large space which can be adapted for lectures, seminars, conferences, and larger events. The MSR contains a lecture-style double blackboard and projection screen(s).

The Small Seminar Room (room 1003A), located behind the MSR, is a smaller space well suited for discussion-centric talks and meetings. The SSR contains a blackboard and projection screen.

The Auditorium (room 1403), located to the left of the west entrance to Kohn Hall, is an ideal space for seminars, blackboard talks, and discussions. The Auditorium contains a blackboard, one main projection screen, and two other projection screens.

All three seminar rooms are equipped for recording talks, and all talks set on the weekly schedule are recorded.

To arrange recording for a talk that has not been added to the Talks Schedule, please contact the KITP Help Desk at your earliest convenience. If you would like to give a talk, please check with the coordinators of your program. To inquire about using the MSR, SSR, or Auditorium for informal program talks, please contact the Program Manager.

Virtual Talks

KITP's virtual talks are presented through Zoom. We recommend downloading Zoom prior to your talk and making sure you have the latest version of Zoom installed. If you need to download Zoom, you may do so here: zoom.us/download

  • We recommend wearing headphones with a built-in microphone, or headset, for best audio quality.
  • Try to find good lighting, where the light is in front of you, rather than behind you.
  • Review Zoom security tips at: https://www.it.ucsb.edu/increasing-your-zoom-security
  • Share your screen, by selecting the Share Screen button in the meeting controls bar.
  • To best display your presentation via screen sharing in Zoom, you should opt to display your slides in full screen mode for most devices and presentation software.
  • KITP staff will be in the Zoom meeting room 10-15 minutes before your talk is scheduled to begin, if you'd like to test your presentation, microphone, or webcam at that time.
  • Remember to upload your slides after you've given your talk.