Conference Planning

Conferences are a major industry all over the world, expected to expand by 44% by 2022, far beyond the average projected growth of other industries. Vital for organisations looking to promote first-class knowledge exchange, networking and collaboration with partners, members and stakeholders, conferences industry also provides a wide range of career opportunities.

Designed by successful industry professionals, the online Postgraduate Diploma in Conference Planning features real life briefs from real companies, case studies and interactive subject expert support. These practical elements mean that students gain real life experiences to prepare them for a thriving career in conference planning.

Subjects taught

Event Management Planning
Types of Events; Special Events; Mega Events; Hallmark Events; Major Events; The Event Manager; Qualities of an Event Manager; Strategic Planning; SMART objectives; PEST & SWOT Analyses; Operational Planning; Plans; Organisational Structure; Systematic Planning; Implementation; Post-Event Analysis; Case Studies;

Event Coordination
Staging the Event; Key Suppliers; the Stage; the Venue; Factors to consider; Room Setup; Site Inspection Visits; Contracts and Cancellation Fees;

Conference Planning
Definition; Benefits; Features; the Budget; Types of Conferences; The Conference Planning Team;

The Conference Program
Conference Topics and Timings; Speaker Acquisition; Where to find Speakers; the Briefing; the Conference Brochure; Design; Printing; Distribution;

Conference Venues
Suitability; Location; Availability; Size and Cost; Facilities; Configuration; Inspection;

Conferences Abroad
Why hold a Conference Abroad? DMCs; Location; Legalities; Negotiation; Documentation; Health & Safety; Translators & Interpreters;

Media Events
Understanding the Objectives of the Press Conference; Defining the Target Audience that Should Attend; Planning Date and Time; Selecting and Booking Venue; Listing Logistics Requirements; Developing a Speaker and Presentation Plan; Reviewing Presentation Content with your Client; Timelines and Media/Press Invitations; Managing Confirmations;

Political Conferences
Definition; Planning; Agenda; Security;

Keynote Speeches: Workshops & Seminars
Definition; Types of Keynote Speakers; Importance of; Planning the Workshop; Seminar Planning;

Virtual Events
Definition; Why hold a Virtual Event? Teleconferences; Service Options; the Meeting itself; Evaluation; Video Conferences; Service Options; Pros & Cons; Preparing the Venue; Evaluating; Web Conferencing; Definition; Pros & Cons; Different Options; Potential Difficulties;

Conference Evaluation
Closing Your Events; Administration; Evaluation of the Event; Methods of Evaluation;

Accommodation & Transport
Selecting the Right Location; Legalities; Destination Management Companies; Transport; Travelling by Air; Car or Road;

Conference Equipment
Types of equipment used at conferences;

Working With Suppliers
Supplier Selection; Researching Suppliers; Meeting with Suppliers; Considerations; Supplier Negotiation; Contracts; Supplier Relations; Contingency Plans;

Event Risk Management
Budgeting; Forecasting Expenditure; Compiling and Understanding Event Contracts; Managing Health and Safety; Event Risk Assessment; Copyright and Trademark Considerations; Event Ethical Practice. Public Liability and Insurance; Accident and Incident forms; Planning for Hot or Wet and Stormy Weather Conditions; Emergency Management Plan for Fire; Explosion; Dangerous Chemical Release; Medical Emergency; Bomb Threat; Robbery etc.; Emergency Services Management; Fire Safety; Contingency Planning; Evacuation Plans and Training; Crisis Management Strategy; Media Management during a Crisis or Emergency; Management of Complaints;

Project Management
Project Management Defined; The Project and the Project Manager; the Role of the Project Manager; Successful Project Management; the Project Management Life Cycle; Formulating a Plan;

ProjectLibre Open Source Project Management Software
ProjectLibre is a free open source project management software application. It is designed to manage small to medium sized projects and contains all the tools necessary to manage various types of projects including extensive reporting facilities. ProjectLibre is also compatible with Microsoft Project making transfer of projects easy and straightforward;

Overview of the ProjectLibre Environment
Introduction to ProjectLibre; Downloading & Installing the Application; The ProjectLibre screen environment: Gantt Charts; Using Network Diagrams; the Resources View; the Work Breakdown Structure Chart; the Resources Breakdown Structure Chart; the Reports Screen; the Task Usage Detail Screen; the Resource Usage Detail Screen; the Histogram Screen;

Setting up and Managing a Project
Setting up a New Project; Creating Sub Tasks; Setting Task Durations; Setting Task Dependencies; Modifying a Task; Adding Notes to a Task; Adding Resources to your Project. Work and Material Resource Types: Assigning & Modifying a Resource; Assigning Costs to a Resource; Adding Notes to a Resource; Inserting Milestones in a Project; Tracking your Project using Baselines; Creating Project Reports. Common Project Management Terms; Resources and References;

Definitions; Historical Development; the Advertising Industry and Professional Bodies; Codes of Practice; Advertising Agencies; Selecting an Agency and working with it; Advertising Campaign Planning and Management; Advertising Media; Types of Advertisements - Magazines; Newspapers; Posters; Billboards; Ambient Advertising; The Relationship between Advertising and Public Relations;

Marketing Event Principles
Needs and Motivations of Event Customers; The Market Research Process; Effectively Collect and Analyse Market Data; Reporting the findings to the Team and Client; Elements of the Marketing Mix (Product; Price; Promotion and Place); The Pricing Process and How to Establish a Pricing Plan for your Market; Target Marketing Channels; Promote and Develop a Website and Direct Marketing Strategy;

Marketing the Event
Planning the Event Proposal Strategy with Your Target Market in Mind; Preparing the Event Proposal; Sourcing and Sending Invitations; Budgeting and Buying Advertising; Publicising the Event; Organising Contests and Pre Event Campaigns; Merchandising; Packaging and Sales Promotion; Formulating a Public Relations Strategy; Conducting Market Research; Methods of Measuring Marketing Activity.

Social Media Marketing
Introduction to Social Media and Social Networking; How Social Media is transforming the way we do Business; Facebook; Twitter; YouTube;

Public Relations
Review the Place for PR in Business Today; Review PR's Relationship with other Functions/Professions including Event Management; Marketing; etc.; Professionalism and industry bodies; Sponsorship and Community Relations; Definitions and Historical Development of the Sponsorship Market; Why Organisations engage in Sponsorship; Using Sponsorship to Target Particular Publics;

The Social Media Landscape
Blogs; Microblogs; Chatrooms; Delicious; Email; Flickr; Twitter; Instant messaging; Message Boards; Mobile Internet ; New Media Releases; Online Conferencing; Online Surveys; Pay per click; Podcasts; RSS; Search Engines; SEO; Social Networking Service Sites; Video Sharing; Virtual worlds; VoIP; Wiki and Widgets;

The Internet as a Media
Commercial Implications of the Internet; Social Interaction with the Internet; Web 2.0 and its Implications; Internet Convergence; the Network Effect; Internet Information Exchange; Internet Audience Size and Exposure; Internet Culture and Communication; Transparency and the Internet;

Online PR building blocks
Online Communications Platforms; Online Communication Channels; Online Communication Mediums; Interactivity and Application of Communication Channels; Policy; Optimisation; Monitoring and Evaluation of Online Communications Channels; Online Communications Channels Planning and Implementation;

Social Media and PR strategy
Local versus Global Communication; Landscaping Platforms; Channels and context; Online PR Organisational Analysis and Segmentation; Developing Online PR Strategies; Online PR Tactics and SEO considerations; Online PR Planning; Managing Online PR Risk and Opportunities;

Online Influences on present PR practices
Internet influence on News; Internet Journalists; Economics of Online News Production; Internet Critics and other influences; the PR Practitioner as an Online Publisher; Ethical Internet PR; Truthfulness and Duty of Care; Online Ethics; Debate; Guidelines and Best Practice. Monitoring and Evaluation of Social Media Discourse; Trends and Value; Policy Influences; corporate speak; Implications of Social Media for Corporate Social Responsibility;

Setting Up & Marketing Your Own Consultancy
The Business Plan; Legalities; Setting Up; the Marketing Strategy; Knowing Your Competitors; Promotional Tools;

Presentation Skills
The Importance of Preparation and Research; Understanding your Audience Before you Present; Speech Content (Subject Matter and Objectives); Speech Delivery and Variety; Discuss the Importance of Body Language; Eye Contact etc.; Presentation Aids; Management of Locations and Audiences; Presentation Structure.

Entry requirements

Criteria for eligibility must be met in full prior to commencing the programme. For successful enrollment on the Postgraduate Diploma course, the minimum entry requirement is a prior Degree level qualification.

Application dates

Enrolment intake is strictly limited on this course. Early application is advised. Places are allocated on a first come first served basis.


You will have full access to online resources and subject expert support for two calendar years. However, you can complete the course in as little as 1 year, by dedicating 6-8 hours of study per week.

Enrolment dates

Enrolment Date: 20th October 2023.

For Future Dates, please contact Fitzwilliam Institute for next available start date.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma at UK Level 7

  • Attendance type

    Part time

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