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Submitting the Conference Proposal


This resource will help undergraduate, graduate, and professional scholars write proposals for academic conferences, articles, and books.

Since the great majority of proposals are submitted via e-mail, make sure you follow e-mail etiquette guidelines, such as including a proper subject line, a short but professional body of text in the e-mail, preferably including a short paragraph on your scholarly background. The reader will not know your skills and qualifications and why you chose to submit to their panel or to a particular conference, so you might include a few sentences on any or all of those topics.

The actual proposal, unless otherwise required by the call for papers, should be a Word document that can be read by most computers (when in doubt, save the file as a .doc file instead of as a .docx). This is generally more pleasant to the eye in reading and printing, especially if the chair has to read a large number of proposals. You may also want to save and send the file in rich text format (rtf) or Portable Document Format (PDF) to ensure compatibility with different computer operating systems and platforms.

Write your proposal either double-spaced or with 1.5 spacing and use a clear font and heading with your information and the conference title and date. Be sure to follow all word count guidelines from the call. Save and/or print a copy of your proposal in case it gets lost and check to see if the e-mail was sent (or cc it to your own folder.)

You will not need to state whether you need audiovisual equipment in the e-mail or in the proposal at this point unless this information is requested.