CALL FOR PROPOSALS
Submission Deadline: Monday, November 4, 2016
The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) is pleased to announce the 2017 Annual Conference Call for Proposals. Proposals are now being accepted based on the conference theme, USDLA: 30 Years of Driving Excellence in Distance Learning.
We welcome proposals from all corporate, education (higher and K-12), telehealth, government, and military. In keeping with our theme and our new location in Indianapolis, the following tracks are intended to guide the general areas of presentations:
Revving Your Engine – This is for current state of the field presentations (“look what we did”) focused on sharing success stories, new program development, program enhancements demonstrating historical shifts.
Racing Ahead – Near term future vision (CBE, Alt credentials, etc.). These sessions will discuss the future direction where distance education is heading, should head, success metrics that are currently in place or should be developed to show value.
Turbocharging the Future – Longer future vision (AR/VR environments, DIYU). This track specifically focuses on extending learning spaces using modern technologies and techniques. Promises of AR/VR/MR, 3-d printing, immersive learning and simulations.
Pit Row – Operational presentations that can focus on the how-to’s operational planning, faculty and institutional engagement, operational shifts.
Rules of the Road – Presentations on policies, regulations, etc. This track will cover policy development, issues with developing robust policies, balancing needs for quality vs. faculty shared governance, federal policies (NC-SARA, ADA).
Proposal Options Available
Concurrent information sessions provide an opportunity for you to give an interactive presentation in one or more of the conference topic areas. Conference attendees expect sessions to provide practical advice and the sharing of experiences. The committee seeks high quality, thought-provoking and interactive sessions, not lecture format. Co-presenters are encouraged. Also, the USDLA Program Committee may select your proposal to be featured in a panel along with other like presenters. (60 minutes)
Poster sessions allow presenters to prepare a standing tabletop poster that describes a project, process, research or other activity. Presenting a poster session will give you an opportunity to meet and network with a majority of conference attendees and USDLA Award Winners as these posters are held during the Awards Dinner Reception. (60 minutes)
Pre-conference workshops are offered as a vehicle to get the conference started, set the stage for the conference theme, and discuss relevant issues in the field of distance learning (3-hour sessions on Sunday, April 30, 2017 from 2-5pm (time subject to change.)
There will also be the potential to present your session in our virtual classroom setting, which means you will be viewed by face-to-face as well as remote attendees. You will be able to note your interest in doing this in the online proposal form and be advised if selected.
Preparing Your Proposal
The committee recommends that proposals be specific about what will make the presentation valuable to attendees. Any proposal that is perceived to be a “sales pitch” will not be considered. Your proposal should be focused on issues, innovative working solutions, and should address the conference theme. All presenters and co-presenters (regardless of session type) will be expected to register for the full conference.
For your information, the automated proposal system will ask you for the following, so please gather this information prior to the time of submission:
1) Contact Information: the name and full contact information for the lead presenter and any co-presenters
2) Session Title: a succinct, but descriptive title of no more than ten words
3) Format: concurrent, poster, or pre-conference workshop
4) Abstract: 50-words (or less) – Please note: the session abstract will be used in the printed program. Make sure it accurately reflects your session, as it will be what draws people to your presentation.
5) Content: a clear summary of learning objectives and session content in no less than 300 words, not to exceed 500 words
6) Conference Tracks(s): session can cover more than one track
7) Audience Focus by Constituency: K-12, higher education, corporate, government, military, and telehealth – USDLA serves multiple constituencies, from the local, state, national, and global perspectives. Please tell us who will benefit from your session (may be more than one group; strongly encouraged.)
8) Internet: standard setup of projector and screen provided – If Internet access is needed, you must include that information in your proposal. We cannot accommodate a request made during the conference. If you need sound please bring your own speakers.
9) Virtual Session/Live Feed: indicate desire to be considered or not considered as a virtual presenter for virtual conference attendees
Conference participants will expect well-delivered presentations containing quality information that is of practical value to their day-to-day professional lives. Members of the USDLA 2016 Conference Program Committee will look for clear descriptions. Considerable weight will be given to proposals that specify session learning objectives and clearly describe why the content will be valuable to attendees.
Specifically, reviewers will look for the following:
- Topic relevance to distance learning and the conference theme, USDLA: 30 Years of Driving Excellence in Distance Learning!
- Quality of the presentation: substance, clarity and consistency between the title, abstract, and content within the proposal; proposal organization
- Measurable outcomes of the presentation
- Evidence of innovation and effective practice
- Audience breadth, engagement, and likelihood of future application
The conference will provide a standard set up (LCD data/video projector and screen). You will need to provide your own laptop computer. If you require Internet access for your session, please indicate so in your proposal. Please note that we are unable to provide audio resources (house sound or speakers) for concurrent and/or poster sessions.
Status of Proposal and Notification
The 2017 Program Committee will review proposals and you will be contacted about the status of yours by January 20, 2017. Presenters are eligible for the Early Bird registration rate even after the close of Early Bird registration.