An academic conference or symposium is a conference for researchers to present and discuss their work. Together with academic or scientific journals, conferences provide an important channel for exchange of information between researchers.
Academic conferences typically fall into three categories:
1. the themed conference, small conferences organized around a particular topic;
2. the general conference, a conference with a wider focus, with sessions on a wide variety of topics. These conferences are often organized by regional, national, or international learned societies, and held annually or on some other regular basis.
3. the professional conference, large conferences not limited to academics but with academically related issues.