We’ve received a lot of questions over the years on whether or not attending the International Symposium on Human Identification is appropriate for someone in a particular career field. In most cases, if you have an interest in or work with forensic DNA typing, then the answer is yes, definitely!

Our audience is primarily comprised of Criminalists, Analysts, and Forensic Scientists ranging from those who have just entered the field to pioneers in the field. What’s unique to ISHI is that we also host many of the decision makers in the field, from Technical Leaders and Supervisors to Lab Directors and CEOs.


What is a virtual conference?


A virtual conference is hosted entirely over the Internet, allowing attendees from around the world to access presentations, view virtual booths, and network with fellow attendees from their computers, phones, or tablets. Attendees participate through a conference website designed specifically for the virtual conference. This site is where you will watch conference presentations. Most General Sessions presentations will be available on-demand, allowing you to watch at a time that fits best into your schedule. Workshops will be held live, allowing participation with questions and comments in real time. Can’t make the live version of the workshop? Don’t worry, those will be available on demand after ISHI too. You do not need to download any software to participate in the conference.


When will I receive the instructions for attending ISHI 31 as a virtual event?


Once you register, you will receive an email confirming your registration. The ISHI team is working diligently to prepare for this unique experience, and will send you the necessary instructions for attending within a couple of weeks of the event. When you register, make sure that you do not opt out of receiving communication from ISHI. Please make sure that the email address associated with your registration is accurate and up to date so that there is no delay in receiving our communications.


How much does it cost to attend virtually?


$100 allows you access to all of the General Sessions presentations. For groups of 15 or more, please contact Sharon Zelanka ( for special pricing. Full and half-day workshops are available for an additional charge ($100 for full day; $50 for half day workshop).


Can my computer or mobile device handle the virtual event? What technology do I need to attend this event?


To participate, you need an Internet connection and web browser. For the best viewing experience, we recommend that you join the conference using a supported internet browser, which includes Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. Internet Explorer is not recommended as some functions, such as chat, are not fully supported.

We’ll be streaming in HD but some computers and internet connections may not quickly auto-adjust to a lower resolution stream. If you experience buffering or issues with viewing the video stream, you may have a better viewing experience by reducing the quality to SD manually.


Will the program and speakers be the same as if we met in person in San Antonio?


Your registration includes 8+ hours of on-demand General Sessions talks featuring key opinion leaders and insights on emerging technologies. Presentations will kick off on September 14th with a live keynote given by CeCe Moore and Paul Fronczak and will then be available on-demand for 30 days, allowing you to watch on your schedule. 

For more in-depth training, a selection of full and half-day workshops will be held by experts in the field. Workshops will be presented live, allowing for interaction with the presenters, and will be available on-demand for those in differing time-zones.

ISHI 31 will also feature a virtual exhibit hall with a number of vendors showcasing the latest technologies. 

We will not be hosting a poster session. We feel that these types of discussions are done better in person and are not suited to a virtual event. Please contact Tara Luther ( if you are interested in sharing your work on the ISHI blog.


Will I be able to see the presenters for each session?


Yes! Sessions will feature video of the presenters as well displaying their slides during live presentations. On Demand presentations will show a video of the presenter with a PDF download of their slides available.


Will I receive a certificate of participation?


Yes, you will be able to download certificates of participation for the ISHI 31 General Sessions presentations and the workshops attended.


Can I ask questions during the sessions?


Workshops and the keynote presentation will be held live and offer audience participation, including a Q&A session. All other presentations will be available on-demand. Questions can be asked of the presenters before their presentation through our website and can be asked after via email.


Can I share my virtual ISHI login information with other members of my team?


For every paid registration, only one device (computer, laptop, tablet, phone) will be allowed to enter the virtual conference. The credits earned, networking features, etc., are all tied to the account of the individual that purchased access to the virtual event. Only the registered individual will receive a certificate of attendance.


Could you please explain how networking activities will occur?


Email and chat with attendees, speakers, and exhibitors from around the world one on one or in a group at a time that works for you. An attendee directory allows you to easily connect, and a unique matchmaking feature will allow you to reach out to others based on topics of shared interest.


What time does the conference start?


The conference will begin on Monday, September 14, 2020 at 10:00 AM Central Time. Convert to your local time.


I booked my hotel through the official housing block with the JW Marriott. How do I cancel my room registration?


Please call the hotel directly at +1 210.276.2500 (U.S. and Canada) to cancel your reservation. There should be no penalty if you booked your room through the official housing block.


What if I have already registered to participate in person?


Your in person ISHI 31 registration (including workshops) will be automatically transferred to a virtual registration. Any fees paid in excess of the virtual cost will be refunded to you. Please contact Sharon Zelanka by Friday, June 19, 2020 if you’d prefer to cancel your registration.


I registered but would like to cancel. What are my options?


We’re sorry to hear that you won’t be able to join us! In the event that you need to cancel your registration for the general session or workshops, you will receive a full refund. Substitutions are available at any time. For questions please contact Sharon Zelanka.


Will ISHI be a virtual event next year?


No, we anticipate ISHI 32 will be held as an in-person event at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, Florida on September 14-17, 2021.


Where can I find abstracts from previous symposia?


Abstracts for both oral and poster presentations are available on the Promega webpage dating back to the 9th ISHI.


I still have questions – who can I contact?

We’d love to help! Please contact Sharon Zelanka with any additional questions.