Distance Learning Center

Educating and Connecting the Health Law Community.

Distance Learning Event Planning

Information for Practice Groups

Practice Groups requirements for distance learning educational events. These requirements must be met each year for Practice Groups (and associated Affinity Group(s)), Task Force and Councils. 

For Practice Groups 

  • Maximum of 4 educational calls per year, i.e., 1 each quarter conducted by the PG and/or associated AG 
  • Minimum of 4 webinars per year (conducted by the PG and associated AG) and 

For Task Forces 

  • Maximum of 2 educational calls per year, i.e., 1 in the fall and 1 in the spring 
  • Minimum of 2 webinars conducted by the TF per year and 

For Councils (Young Professionals, Women’s Leadership) 

  • Strive for 2-4 educational offerings per year, e.g., educational calls and/or AHLA 101 on-demand courses 

Two complimentary webinar registrations are provided to the Vice Chairs of the PG or TF responsible for serving as “Content Lead” for paid webinars. The Vice Chair or Chair may provide the complimentary pass to two individuals of his/her choice. 4 registrations at a discounted rate will be available and all on-demand complimentary access will be provided to the leaders of the specific practice group or task force after the webinar. 

Select a Topic

  • Select a topic for your event that would be of interest to the health law industry and specific audience such as young professionals, and that impacts your Practice Group (PG), Task Force (TF), or Affinity Group (AG) in some substantive way. 
  • New legislation and regulations, those currently in the works or on the horizon, and current trends in health law are great places to start for selecting a topic.  

Select a Level of Difficulty

Webinar level of difficulty should be presented to audience at an “intermediate,” or “advanced” level. “Intermediate” level assumes the audience has basic knowledge of the topic but not yet an expert in the topic area. “Advanced” assumes the audience has knowledge of the topic and an expert in the topic area.   

Select a Format

There are several distance learning event formats available through which a group can share content with its members. The Vice Chair(s) of Educational Programming should coordinate with the Chair, other Vice Chairs, and AHLA’s Senior Director of Distance Learning to determine if a topic meets the criteria for a webinar or, instead, should be held as an educational call. 


  • Webinars are 90-minute-long, live web-based, planned by AHLA's Practice Group(s), Task Force(s), and/or Affinity Group(s) *.
  • Webinars are held at 2:00 pm Eastern Time, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. 
  • Speakers should create a PowerPoint presentation, which will become the visual component of the webinar and included with the on-demand webinar product. 
  • The presentation is followed by a Q&A session in which questions are submitted electronically to the presenters and the presenters answer them in real time during the event.
  • Live webinars usually offer CLE credits. 

For CLE Purposes, webinars should have the following breakdown: 

  • 5 Minutes for introduction of topic and speakers 
  • 75 minutes for substantive presentation 
  • 10-15 minutes for Q&A 

Educational Calls

  • Educational calls are held as free conference calls open to members of a specific Task Force, Council, Practice Group (associated Affinity Group). 
  • Educational calls are held at 11:00 AM, 12:00 PM or 3:00 PM Eastern Time, Monday-Friday. 
  • Educational calls are 30 minutes call, 5 minutes of an educational call is designated to PG/TF/Council updates and introduction of speaker. The remaining 25 minutes is to facilitate interactive discussion on a hot topic among guest speaker (no more than two non-government speakers for an educational call). 
  • The topic should be timely and relevant to lend itself to a robust discussion. 
  • Agenda is required for educational calls. Speaker can provide 1-2-page best practice guide or informational sheet only. Powerpoint presentations should not be used for educational calls.
  • Educational Calls are not eligible for CLE credit. The agenda, best practice guide or informational sheet will be available for download prior to the educational call. The audio recording and resources related to the educational call will be available to the designated Practice Groups, Task Force or Council members.

AHLA 101 Courses 

AHLA 101 Courses are on-demand “fundamental” programs that are free to members, providing health law practitioners with a basic understanding of concepts they may encounter in their practice. The courses include interactive features, such as quizzes, knowledge check-ins, or other interactive items. For more information, please contact the publishing department (publishing@americanhealthlaw.org) about creating an AHLA 101 course.  

Select Date(s) 

Please review the Distance Learning Planning Calendar for available dates to hold a distance learning event. For events that are built around specific pieces of legislation or regulations, the release date of said pieces usually dictate when the event will take place to some degree (i.e., close enough to the release of the legislation to be timely and relevant). For events of general interest, and even for events with time constraints dictated by regulatory release dates, please keep in mind the need to avoid holidays and to adhere to the appropriate marketing lead time requirements listed below.

  • Webinars and webinar series of general interest:  8 weeks in advance
  • Webinars on hot topics/late-breaking issues: 3 weeks in advance
  • Educational calls: no later than 8 weeks in advance 

For distance learning events, the dates should be selected to allow for eight weeks of marketing time prior to the FIRST DATE of the single event or a series. AHLA recommends no more than three parts for a series.  If you have interested in having a series with more than three parts, please consult with Distance Learning Staff  DL@americanhealthlaw.org prior to submitting your event. 

Select and Secure Speakers

Leaders should choose speakers who are knowledgeable and experienced in the topic area. Leaders can identify speakers in a variety of ways, including their own experience and knowledge/expertise in a topic area or from AHLA members or nonmembers who indicate an interest in speaking in the topic area. 

  • Leaders should include opportunities in the Call for Volunteers through the communities and post on the relevant topical community or social media channels.  
  • Leaders should be sensitive to choosing speakers from diverse practice areas and backgrounds. No more than one speaker from a law firm or company can speak on a single webinar or webinar series.  
  • Leaders also should strive to avoid repeat speakers on multiple webinars without very good reason (such as a niche area where only a few individuals have the desired knowledge).  
  • If speakers are chosen from a particular industry for a segment perspective, leaders should consider whether a counter view should be presented for balance.  

Consideration should also be given to (1) government speakers where relevant for a topic and (2) balancing new attorney talent with experienced presenters. 

Experience suggests no more than three speakers and one moderator for a single webinar.  

(Diversity and inclusion are a part of AHLA's value system and are essential to the Association's ability to produce the highest quality non-partisan educational programs and distance learning events concerning health law issues. AHLA values and seeks to advance and promote diverse and inclusive participation within the Association and in order to advance this goal, the Vice Chair of Member Engagement should coordinate with the Chair and other Vice Chairs and post speaking opportunities for Webinars and Educational Calls through the online Volunteer portal at www.americanhealthlaw.org/volunteer.)

Collaborate with other AHLA Groups 

It is possible that the content of your distance learning event may have overlapping interest to members of other Practice Groups. While planning your event, reach out and collaborate with other Practice Groups whose members may be of interested in the topic area(s). Partnering can aid in the planning of your distance learning event. 

Webinar or Educational Call Submittal Forms

Submit your webinar and educational calls to the Distance Learning staff via the online Webinar Submittal Form and Educational Call Submittal Form. Once the form is received, the submittals will be reviewed internally to make sure there are no conflicting events scheduled.  The Distance Learning staff will confirm the date(s) and begin the setup process (which an take up to 5-7 business days). Upon completion of setup, the program is ready to be marketed.  

Information for Speakers 

Please review the Information for Speakers page which highlights requirement, due dates, and helpful tips and resources to support webinar preparation. Distance Learning Department staff will provide logistical information prior to the event date.

Marketing the Event

Marketing staff will begin marketing the event upon completion of setup.  In general, marketing will include:

  • Single Webinars
    • Inclusion in AHLA Connections magazine
    • Event set up in the Communities tied to the PG Content Lead Community 
    • Included in the Connections to Learning Announcement (2-3 times)
    • Included in the AHLA Daily (1-3 times)
    • 300x250 and/or 600x160 ads in related Communities
    • Social media posts (6-8 total over 5 weeks)
    • Included in the mega menu of the main AHLA website
    • Google Ad Words campaign
  • Series
    • All of the above plus an initial dedicated email
  • Additional Tactics for Struggling Webinars
    • Additional social posts and ads placed in various other AHLA emails
    • Possible 2 Weeks to Register / Last Chance to Register email
  • Educational Calls
    • Event set up in the Communities tied to the PG Content Lead Community 
    • Included in the Connections to Learning emails as related graphical ad 
    • Included in the News and Analysis emails as related graphical ad 
    • Included in AHLA Daily (1 time – 1st of the month, all calls for that month) 
    • 300x250 and/or 600x160 ads in related Communities Social media posts (2-3 total over 5 weeks)

Additionally, we ask that our leaders, speakers, and moderators help us market our distance learning programs by forwarding marketing emails to colleagues, liking/sharing/retweeting/posting social media posts, posting invitations in related AHLA Communities, and other general outreach to their respective networks to ensure a well attended event.

Decision Tree

A series of questions can be used to facilitate the group’s decision-making and provide guidance for Practice and Affinity Group, Task Force, and Council leaders in their educational planning efforts. 

  • If a topic crosses over multiple PG/AG/TFs or Councils and will appeal to a broad range of AHLA members – would be a Webinar. 
  • If CLE’s need to be made available – would be a Webinar. 
  • If one presenter is presenting substantive content, classification will be based on the length of the presentation – if speaking to the topic 15 or fewer minutes – would be an Educational Call.  
  • If more than one presenter presenting substantive content – would be a Webinar. 
  • If there is a desire to use a PowerPoint slide deck while presenting – could be used during a Webinar or an Educational Call but how it is made available to participants will differ. 
  • If a group wants to create a free educational experience that includes interactive features, such as quizzes, knowledge check-ins, or other interactive items – would be an AHLA 101 on-demand course. 
  • If a group wants an opportunity to update its members on activities and upcoming events and to solicit volunteers – would be an Educational Call. 
  • If a group wants to have dialogue with its members and provide an opportunity for a presenter to have a dialogue with participants on the call – would be an Educational Call. 
  • If a group wants to facilitate an interactive educational experience on a substantive topic – would be a Webinar. 
  • If a group wants to create an educational experience that provides health law practitioners with a basic understanding of concepts they may encounter in their practice – would be an AHLA 101 on-demand course. 
  • As other ‘best practice tips’ are developed, we will add them to this document for PG/AG/TF use. Please contact AHLA membership and distance learning staff if you have additional questions. 


Please also see Information for Speakers and our Frequently Asked Questions pages for more information.  Additionally, you can contact the Distance Learning Department staff at DL@americanhealthlaw.org

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