2019 Call for Proposals

The Call for Proposals is now closed.

Proposals featuring best practices, new resources, innovative approaches, discussion of critical issues, presentation of research and work-in-progress were submitted online and were due on Monday, April 1, 2019. All proposals were evaluated using a blind peer-review process. Detailed information about the session types, topic areas, guidelines for submission, submission process, and the Robert J. Menges Honored Presentation Award are included below.

Leaning on the theme of Connection: Closing the Distance, we encourage proposals for this year’s conference that explore how human and digital connection can be intentionally leveraged by the educational development community to promote authentic connection in our ever-changing higher education landscape. The three prompts below are provided to guide the conference theme and promote two of the cross-cutting priorities from the POD Network Strategic Plan: diversity and inclusion, and evidence-based practice.

1.) Thinking about how educational developers can foster intentional connections and building community, the following questions might be explored:

  • How can we enhance our relationships with faculty, as well as among faculty?
  • How can we support intentional faculty and student relationships?
  • How can we encourage student to student interactions, which foster meaningful relationships?

2.) Thinking about education development that is inclusive and accessible to all, the following questions might be explored:

  • How do we enhance and support connection through effective teaching and learning environments that are available to all students?
  • How can the digital learning environment be leveraged to enhance accessibility and student connection?
  • How can Centers’ programming promote intentionality in order to reverse the marginalization of historically underserved and underrepresented populations?
  • How can Centers’ partner and communicate with organizational stakeholders to leverage change regarding accessibility and inclusion?

3.) Thinking about the rapidly changing educational landscape, the following questions about educational development might be explored:

  • How do evidence-based practices relate to quality course design and the accomplishment of learning outcomes?
  • How can we guide the intentional integration of educational technology to support student connection within course design and curricular development?
  • How can we leverage the synergistic relationship between face-to-face and distance education pedagogies to support connections?
  • How are changes in the educational landscapes affecting our Centers’ organizational structures?

Please plan to join us to build connection while sharing your research and practices using various modes of presentation and engagement.

Paul Gebb, Conference Co-Chair
Antonia Levy, Conference Co-Chair
Claudia Cornejo Happel, Program Co-Chair
German Vargas Ramos, Program-Co-Chair
Hoag Holmgren, POD Network Executive Director


General Information | Session Types | Topics and Audiences | Rules for Proposal Submission | Submission Process | Review Rubric

General Information

Please begin preparing your proposals now! We welcome proposals featuring best practices, new resources, innovative approaches, discussion of critical issues, presentation of research, and work-in-progress. All proposals will be evaluated using a blind peer-review process (see below for the review rubric). Detailed information about the session types, topic areas, guidelines for submission, submission process, review rubric, and the Robert J. Menges Honored Presentation Award are listed below.

We are using a submission database that will require you to create an account and will assign you an ID when submitting your proposal. Please retain your assigned Proposal Submission ID number so that you can access your submissions later if needed.


Please feel free to email the conference team members listed in this CFP with questions.

Please read the information below carefully before submitting!

Notification about conference acceptances will be sent out on June 21, 2019.

Session Types

The POD Network in Higher Education welcomes proposals for a variety of session types, including:

Pre-conference Workshops:

  • 3-hour interactive workshops
  • 6-hour interactive workshops

Concurrent Sessions:

  • 75-minute interactive sessions
  • 75-minute roundtable discussions
  • 35-minute research presentations
  • Poster presentations

For all session types, proposals should describe work that is systematically designed, implemented, and assessed. Proposals should make clear how participants might apply, extend, or adapt the ideas they learn. Specific information about the different session types follows.

Pre-Conference Workshops
Pre-conference workshops emphasize learning-by-doing and provide participants the opportunity to explore topics in depth through a combination of hands-on activities, reflection, and discussion. Proposals should include a detailed outline describing the types of learning activities and interaction you plan. Proposals should indicate the maximum number of participants and any special room set-up you might need. You may also request a nominal materials fee where justified (e.g., for the cost of a book actually used in the session); please include this information in the body of your proposal if relevant. A flipchart and markers will be provided, as will an LCD projector; external speakers may be requested for playing audio from the presenter’s laptop. Wireless internet access will be available throughout the conference space. Computer laboratories are not available and laptops cannot be provided for presenters.

The majority of pre-conference workshops are three hours in length. These shorter workshops will take place the morning of Thursday, November 14. Fewer six-hour sessions are offered and are reserved for proposals that provide a clear rationale for needing the longer session. Six-hour workshops will begin the afternoon of Wednesday, November 13th and conclude the morning of Thursday, November 14.

Pre-conference workshops are advertised in the conference registration materials. We will notify presenters of registration numbers before the conference and request that on-site registrants be accommodated as well (if space permits).

Please direct questions regarding pre-conference workshops to coordinators: Derina Samuel (dss279@cornell.edu) and Kelly Clark (kelly.clark@jhu.edu).

Concurrent Sessions

75-Minute Interactive Sessions:
Interactive sessions combine brief presentations or panel discussions with methods that engage all participants, reflecting the POD Network’s long-standing tradition of interactive, collegial sessions—not of lecturing or reading papers to passive audiences. Session leaders are encouraged to incorporate meaningful activities as appropriate, selecting from a variety of methods such as presentation, demonstration, discussion, application, feedback, group and individual work, and role playing. We encourage you to creatively model exemplary teaching. A flipchart and markers will be provided, as will an LCD projector; external speakers may be requested for playing audio from the presenter’s laptop. Wireless internet access will be available throughout the conference space.

Please direct questions regarding 75-minute interactive sessions to coordinators: Ronit Ajlen (ronitg@umich.edu) and Francesca Minonne (minonne@bc.edu).

75-Minute Roundtable Discussions:
Roundtable discussions provide an opportunity for various kinds of interactions in a smaller group setting (10-15 people), such as discussion of a concept, approach, program, issue, case study, or reading. This format is ideal for getting to know people who may be facing similar issues to you, exploring new ideas, and sharing practices. It is contrary to the spirit of a roundtable discussion for the facilitator to make a formal presentation. A flipchart and markers will be provided, but no audio-visual equipment is available for roundtable discussions.

Please direct questions regarding 75-minute roundtable discussions to coordinators Marina Smitherman (msmitherman@daltonstate.edu) and Megan Mittelstadt (megan.mittelstadt@uga.edu).

35-Minute Research Sessions:
Research sessions include a presentation and discussion of new or ongoing educational, professional, or organizational development research. Session leaders present their original research (i.e., systematically designed, generalizable studies employing sound methodologies and data analysis practices) for the first 20-25 minutes, reserving 10-15 minutes for discussion. Although research sessions are designed primarily to share research projects and findings, proposals should clearly leave room for discussion or other activities, although the level of interaction is not expected to be as high as in 75-minute interactive sessions. A flipchart and markers will be provided, as will an LCD projector; external speakers may be requested for playing audio from the presenter’s laptop. Wireless internet access will be available throughout the conference space.

Please direct questions regarding 35-minute research presentations to coordinators: Shelly Bayer (shelly.bayer@sdstate.edu) and Lauren Barbeau (lbarbeau@georgiasouthern.edu).

Poster Presentations:
The poster session provides an ideal format for presenting your research, program, or work-in-progress in a context where you can engage in many one-on-one discussions with colleagues. Attractive posters using large, readable fonts and illustrative graphics will attract conference participants and invite conversation about your work.

Each poster presenter will have a 3×4 foot tri-fold poster board and tacks. The poster board can support single-sheet posters or individual 8½”x11” sheets. The poster session site has no multimedia support and no power outlets. Personal laptops may be used during the poster session, but we recommend bringing an additional battery, a back-up laptop, and/or paper handouts. Wireless internet access will be available throughout the conference space.

Please direct questions regarding poster presentations to coordinators: Coming Soon!

Topics and Audiences

*Note: Topic and Audience designations will be used as “tags” on the program within the Guidebook app to make searching for particular session types easier for participants.

Topic Designation
During proposal submission, you will be asked to assign one to three topics to your session from the list below.

  • Assessment: Measuring the effectiveness of our practices and/or outcomes to improve educational development, student learning, or student experiences.
  • Distance and/or Asynchronous Teaching & Learning: Sessions about working with faculty teaching online, instructional design, and programs that support these efforts.
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion: Sessions focused on issues relevant to under-represented or marginalized populations within institutions or educational development.
  • Ed Development Programs, Programming, Curricula: Programs and services offered by educational developers (in centers and other units) workshops, learning communities, recognition.
  • Faculty Professional Development: Professional development for faculty across the career, including personal development, self-reflection, vitality and growth.
  • Healthcare Educational Development: Sessions for educational developers that work in in the field of healthcare, interprofessional professional education, and clinical instruction.
  • Mindfulness and Contemplative Pedagogy: Sessions focused on deepening awareness, improving concentration and focus, broadening insight and perspective, strengthening compassion, and lowering stress and anxiety.
  • Organizational Development: Systemic development of or change within institutions and organizations.
  • Professional Development of Educational Developers: Sessions focused on improving or enhancing our own practices and processes.
  • Research & Scholarship (SoTL, DBER): Systematic, generalizable investigations into research questions about educational development, teaching, and learning, using rigorous data collection and analytic methods (incl., Scholarship of Teaching and Learning; Discipline-Based Educational Research, Teaching as Research, Action Research).
  • Start-up: Establishing and growing centers, programs, projects, or organizations.
  • STEM: Practices, processes, theories, or techniques of teaching and learning in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
  • Teaching & Learning: Practices, processes, theories, and techniques, such as evidence-based teaching practices or assessment of student learning.
  • Technology: Current or new technologies that support teaching, program, or organizational development.

Audience Designation
During proposal submission, you will be asked to assign one to three audience(s) from the list below. Please do not select apparently contradictory pairs (e.g., large/small colleges, new/seasoned developers).

  • Adjunct & Part-time Faculty
  • Administrators (Assoc. Deans, Deans, Vice Provosts, Assoc. VPs)
  • Center Directors
  • Experienced Educational Developers
  • Faculty and faculty who are also part-time educational developers
  • Graduate and Professional Students and Postdocs (and those who work with them)
  • International POD Network Participants
  • Instructional Designers, Technologists, and Technology Integration Specialists
  • New/Recent Educational Developers (5 years or less)
  • POD Network Members
  • Community Colleges
  • Historically Black Colleges and Universities
  • Hispanic-Serving Institutions
  • Large Colleges and Universities
  • Multicampus Institutions or Systems
  • Small Colleges and Universities
  • Tribal Colleges and Universities

Rules for Proposal Submission

Anyone is welcome to submit a proposal. If a session is accepted, each presenter and co-presenter(s) must agree to be a member of the POD Network and be a paid registrant at the conference.

Number of Proposals per Person
Each attendee may submit up to two proposals for conference sessions, but they may be the primary presenter for only one of these sessions. For the second session, they must be listed as a co-presenter. Interactive sessions, roundtable discussions, poster presentations, and research presentations are included in this two-session limit. Because all posters are presented at the same time, individuals should not be listed as presenters on more than one poster proposal.

Exceptions to the two-session limit include: Each attendee may propose one pre-conference workshop as either the primary presenter or co-presenter in addition to proposals for two regular sessions. Additionally, POD Network Professional Development Sessions (submitted through a separate review process) are not included in the two-session limit.

  • Example #1: An attendee may submit one concurrent session proposal as the lead presenter and a second concurrent session proposal as co-presenter.
  • Example #2: An attendee may submit two concurrent session proposals as co-presenter.
  • Example #3: An attendee may submit one pre-conference workshop proposal as the lead presenter, a concurrent session proposal as lead presenter, and a second concurrent session proposal as co-presenter.
  • Example #4: An attendee may submit a concurrent session proposal as a lead presenter, a second concurrent session proposal as a co-presenter, and a POD Network Professional Development Session as a lead presenter.

Blind-Review Process
All proposals are blind-reviewed by peers according to specific review criteria (please see below). In your proposal, replace names of people and institutions with Xs in your title, abstract, and session description. The only identifying information should be in the contact information. Proposals that identify people or institutions will be rejected automatically in the review process. If your proposal is accepted, you are expected to edit your submission and replace the Xs in your title and abstract to include names and institutions.

Sale of Materials and the Solicitation of Consulting Work
The POD Network’s statement of “Ethical Guidelines for Educational Developers” (section 2.8) emphasizes the importance of allowing “no personal or private interests to conflict or appear to conflict with professional duties or clients’ needs.”

To avoid the possibility of a conflict of interest, the POD Network does not permit in any conference session the sale of materials before or during the conference nor the solicitation of presentation materials after the conference. Furthermore, the POD Network does not allow presenters to solicit consulting work during any session listed in the program. Sessions should not directly or indirectly solicit the purchase of materials or programs.

Session presenters are permitted to use materials they have created and to refer to consulting work that they do, but neither materials nor services may be offered for sale during the session. All materials used during the session should be made available for session participants. Proprietary materials should not be used as the primary presentation material but may be included in a list of resources or bibliography. Pre-conference workshop presenters may receive permission to charge an additional fee for materials (such as books), to be collected with the conference registration fee.

The conference schedule includes a Vendor Exhibit to provide a specific time when materials can be sold and consultation work can be solicited.

Questions about this conference practice should be addressed to the POD Network Executive Director or the conference chairs.

Submission Process

The submission system is available now for proposal uploads and submissions must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. (Pacific time) on Monday, April 1st, 2019.

As you prepare your proposal ahead of time, please follow the guidelines for components of the proposal and ensure that your proposal activities align with the session type you propose.

Components of the proposal

  • Current contact information for main presenter and all co-presenters.
  • Session title (no more than 10 words).
  • Session abstract (no more than 100 words).
  • Designation of one to three topic areas, and one to three specific audiences.
  • Please select the type of session best suited for your proposal. Strive for a strong fit between what you intend to accomplish and the type of session you choose.
  • Session description (no more than 500 words):
    1. Provide a conceptual framework for your work, e.g., theoretical or empirical basis, goals, implementation, research findings, and assessment.
    2. State expected outcomes for session participants.
    3. Outline the session activities, specifying the potential time dedicated to each, and plan for interaction. Please model exemplary teaching and learning practices. For poster presentations, focus on the manner in which you plan to present your work rather than on the type of interaction you anticipate.
    4. Meaningfully connect your proposal to the POD Network’s mission and values; connections to the conference theme are also encouraged, but not required.
    5. Where appropriate, integrate critical reflection related to diversity and accessibility.
  • References (no more than 150 words): Strong proposals cite canonical and current literature or scholarly online sources. You do not need to remove your name if you authored a reference; however, if you refer to the text in the description above, do not state that you are the author.
  • Audiovisual request: LCD projectors and flip charts with markers will be made available in all Pre-Conference Workshops, Interactive Sessions, and Research Sessions; external audio speakers are available by request. No AV support other than flipcharts is provided for Roundtable Sessions. Wireless internet access will be available throughout the conference space. The POD Network is unable to supply laptop computers; presenters must bring their own laptops and all needed video adapters to connect to a VGA projector.
  • Accessibility Requests:  The POD Network strives to make all sessions accessible to all conference participants. However, if you have a particular accessibility-related request to enable your full inclusion in the conference, please let us know.

Original research presented at the POD Network annual conference is eligible for the Robert J. Menges Award for Outstanding Research in Educational Development. If you self-nominate and your session is accepted, you will be invited to submit a full proposal, typically due in late June. Please read the instructions for the full proposal before self-nominating.

Review Rubric

Each proposal will be reviewed by three individuals, with reviewers using the following criteria:

Please give a rating for each criterion:

4 = excellent (There are no concerns or questions with the item)

3 = good (There are a few minor concerns or questions with the item; however, they will not be an impediment)

2 = fair (There are concerns or questions about the item that should be addressed if accepted for the conference)

1 = poor (There are significant concerns or questions about the item which must be addressed if accepted for the conference)

N/A* (Please note that a score of N/A will NOT get factored into or diminish a proposal’s final score.)

Session Methodology
Based on the description of activities provided:

  1. _____ The session is likely to accomplish the outcomes stated in the proposal.
  2. _____ The session will be conducted in appropriate ways for the chosen session format (see very specific description of session types and purposes in the call for proposals).
  3. _____ The session is likely to be a model of exemplary teaching, learning, educational and/or organizational development practices.


  1. _____The proposal takes a scholarly approach to practice. That is, the material to be presented incorporates previous research, theory, evidence, and/or assessment. It is not heavily anecdotal.

Innovation and applicability

  1. _____This session will address ideas, topics, or practices that are highly relevant and significant in faculty and/or organizational development.
  2. _____This session will offer fresh information and/or describe innovative or creative practices. It is not a reprisal of previously presented information.
  3. _____The material is likely to be applicable to other campuses, institutions and/or programs; it is not highly institution-specific.

The POD Network’s mission and values
The mission of the Professional and Organizational Development Network in Higher Education (POD Network) is to provide a community for scholars and practitioners who advance teaching and learning through faculty and organizational development. The POD Network values and is committed to: Collegiality, Inclusion, Diverse Perspectives, Advocacy and Social Justice, Distributed Leadership, Innovation, Evidence-Based Practices, and Respect/Ethical Practices.

  1. _____The session is likely to foster critical reflections about diversity and/or encourage attendees to foster more responsive and inclusive campuses.
  2. _____The session is likely to support or advance POD’s mission and values.

Final Recommendation: Accept / Accept with Reservations / Reject
In addition to addressing each rubric criterion, reviewers are requested to provide comments and feedback that explain the rationale behind their scoring and provide further insights to submitters.

Session coordinators use a combination of numeric scores, final recommendations, and reviewer comments to rank proposals, passing their recommendations for acceptances along to the Program Chairs.