OBJECTIVE: To describe the experience of the first-time participant (newbie) training program at the Outcome Measures in Rheumatology (OMERACT) 2016 meeting. METHODS: We conducted new participant sessions at OMERACT 2016, including a 2-h introductory session on Day 1 followed by 1-h evening followup sessions on days 1-4. Pre- and post-meeting surveys assessed participants' levels of comfort with the principles of the OMERACT Filter 2.0 (the essential tools for OMERACT methodology) and the different types of OMERACT sessions, and whether participants felt welcome. In addition, on the final day, a nominal group technique was used to elicit problematic components of the meeting and to develop solutions to those problems. RESULTS: Of the 43 new attendees, 38 participated in the introductory session and 14-18 attended the followup sessions. Comparing Day 1 (preintroductory session) to days 1-3 (post), a similar proportion understood different types of sessions extremely well [45% (pre) versus 47%, 44%, and 36% (post), respectively], and a higher proportion understood principles of the OMERACT filter extremely well [22% (pre) versus 55%, 44%, and 40% (post), respectively]. Most reported feeling welcome (86.7%) and felt they contributed to breakout sessions (93.3%) on the evening of Day 1; results were sustained on days 2-3. The most commonly reported "best" experience included the OMERACT culture and the most common reported experience needing improvement included facilitation issues during breakouts. CONCLUSION: The first-time participants came to OMERACT 2016 with a high baseline level of understanding. They rapidly attained a high comfort level with participation and provided concrete and innovative solutions to the most commonly reported experiences needing improvement.