Meeting Types and Descriptions

Meeting Types

The following are the most common Meeting Types. These are general descriptions of the various meetings; the conduct of individual meetings is mandated by group conscience. Meeting type codes are used in the meeting lists.

Code Description  Comment
O Open Meeting Everyone is Welcome. The group has voted to allow all comers to attend the meeting, although usually only Alcoholics speak.
C Closed Meeting The group has voted attendance is limited to alcoholics only.
The 'O' or 'C' codes designates who may attend a meeting. This is a matter of group conscience. These codes may be joined with others (below) to provide a better understanding of the group's intent for a meeting. For instance, there maybe 'OBB' or 'CBB'; 'OD' or 'CD' meetings.

In cases where the codes 'O' or 'C' are the only codes used, group conscience has designated the meeting as a speaker meeting. Usually speakers are exchanged between groups. These speakers share their "experience, strength and hope" in relating their arrival at a sober life and their commitment to maintaining sobriety.

BB Big Book  The book Alcoholic Anonymous (the Big Book) is the text for these meetings. When the focus is on a specific text, usually the group supplies copies of the book for attendees. If you would like to make notations in the text, obtaining a personal copy is useful.

In the case of Big Books, a number of meetings in the area give new members a copy to keep for their own use. Ask around for these meetings.

BS Big Book Step Study  This type of meeting focuses on specific material from the Big Book and the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (12 & 12). Again texts are usually supplied for attendees, but individual copies are available from Central Service.
Discussion  A chairperson is designated for a meeting; the chairperson speaks briefly about their "experience, strength and hope". Following this the chairperson may suggest a topic for sharing by other attendees.
GV Grapevine These are chairperson led meetings focusing on the monthly publication of the Grapevine.
LS Living Sober A chairperson leads the meeting in a discussion of material drawn from the AA publication Living Sober.
P Promises  The Promises of Alcoholics Anonymous are on pages 82 and 83 of the Big Book. These are the focus of a chairperson led discussion.
R Reflections A recent addition to the AA library, Reflections provides daily material for meditation and prayer. Meetings of this type focus on this daily practice.
S Step Using the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (12 & 12) the meeting focuses on the Steps. Depending on group conscience, a new step is read and discussed each week. Alternately, participants read and discuss individual paragraphs with each week building on the prior weeks work.
SBS  Big Book Enhanced 12 & 12 Step The key here is the word 'enhanced'. The group's conscience mandates a specific and detailed approach to the Big Book and the 12 & 12.
SD Speaker / Discussion Initial speakers kick off the group's discussion of matters brought up by the speakers.
ST Step / Tradition The meeting focuses on both the 12 Steps and the 12 Traditions. The formats of these meetings vary. Please investigate on your own.
T Tradition The second half of the 12 and 12 are the focus of these meetings.
TP Tradition Promise These meetings are a combination of the Traditions and the Promises.
BG Beginner Any of the above meetings may, by group conscience, be designated as a Beginner meeting. These meetings are usually led by more experienced group members with the primary focus on introducing new members to the tools available for the maintenance of sobriety.

Beginners are not restricted to meetings of this type; they are welcomed at all meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous. A benefit of a "beginner" meeting is the opportunity to meet other peers as they start their sober lives.