Call for Proposals

Presenting at the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference provides an opportunity to build your professional network and experience lifelong learning with lifelong friends. Presenting a content-rich session individually or as part of a team is a wonderful way to share knowledge, experiences, and ideas.

The conference’s program will showcase future directions, best practices, stories of successful collaborations, lessons learned, and solutions to community-wide issues within various program tracks.


Program Tracks

Creating a Culture of Data-Informed Decision-Making

Explore the application of data, information and analysis to institutional challenges. The goal? Build a data-informed culture to facilitate decision making at all organizational levels and across all areas. Topics include policy, organization, processes, governance, leadership, and infrastructure that supports data initiatives, as well as how these initiatives are integral to the mission of every institution.

Evolving Infrastructure and Enterprise IT

The practices of IT service delivery and digital transformation—increasingly important to realizing institutional strategy—rely on the successful convergence of information systems, cloud computing infrastructure, and a support and skills model that makes it all work across the breadth of a higher education institution (not just central IT). Evolving infrastructures can increase agility and flexibility, bolster data protection, and encourage innovation. Other topics in this track include infrastructure services and enterprise architecture/systems, as well as frameworks and strategies for effective, efficient IT service management.

Exploring New Boundaries in Teaching and Learning

How do IT practices enable and empower the core academic mission of teaching and learning, as well as the research and scholarship that support that mission? These IT practices include instructional design, immersive learning, distance education, online and blended learning, learning space design, accessibility and universal design, and mobile learning. This track includes support for libraries, pedagogical research and scholarship, and the utilization of new tools in the areas of research computing and data visualization.

Leading and Partnering Across the Institution

This track encourages discussions around the key role that IT plays in serving the needs of the entire institution—administrative, teaching and learning, and research. IT leadership must ensure that the technology organization’s resources and efforts are strategically aligned with the institution’s vision and goals and that the institution is fully leveraging technology and talent to achieve its goals. Leaders must also ensure that the IT organization provides excellent operational-level services and support. This track also includes issues related to institutional and vendor partnerships, remote campus relationships, and partnerships outside the institution.

Making an Impact with Innovative Ideas

New ideas, interesting interventions, wild successes, and educational failures--these are the tools for building the IT organization of tomorrow. Share emerging work, reflect on innovation in process, and propose bold new frameworks for doing the core work of an IT organization.

Managing and Reducing Institutional Risk

IT organizations share accountability for managing institutional continuity of operations within an open and shifting environment. The pace of change, such as the growing use of cloud services, challenges these efforts, as do changing compliance requirements and increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks. From preventing data breaches to sending emergency alerts to protecting privacy, the real-time tactical and long-term strategic need for risk management is vital to all higher education IT leaders.

Navigating Change

One of the most pressing challenges in today’s fast-paced environment is navigating rapid change, an issue is complicated by culture and climate, change fatigue, and the difficulty of measuring the impact of change. How do factors such as institution type and size, private versus public, and centralized versus distributed affect how we manage and adapt to changes in process, impact, and culture? What skills and competencies do we need to successfully navigate change? What tools and frameworks can help us plan for and successfully execute change? How do we drive change from the highest levels of leadership down to individuals and teams? Sessions in this track could cover change in a major system, how to include stakeholders, communications for an open process, decision tracking and agreement, the role of governance, and formal change management processes.

Supporting the Institution

IT organizations must mature by developing a workforce that meets current and emerging demands as technology advances and higher education institutions adapt to new markets and new models. This track focuses on new and future skill sets, emerging needs in the profession, and how to remove barriers to develop and create a modern workforce. Topics include issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion, including how to attract, hire, retain, and develop skilled employees from different backgrounds while creating an inclusive environment where all staff can thrive and contribute.

Transforming the Student Experience

The digital student experience is evolving to support learners from recruitment through their careers. Technology informs, supports, and transforms the way colleges and universities recruit, educate, and retain students and connect with alumni. Institutions with adaptable and student-centered technology designs effectively connect students with the campus through engagement in institutional activities and academic success tools to enrich their experience. Explore the ways in which higher education has successfully responded to the changing expectations of learners, families, and alumni.


Delivery Choices

Your proposal will be carefully evaluated and may be accepted for any of the following formats below, depending on the scope of content and engagement strategies proposed.

Preconference Workshop (Full day = 7 hours; half day = 3.5 hours)

Offered as full- or half-day options, preconference workshops provide participants a deeper examination of various topics, facilitated by leaders with extensive experience in those areas. Workshops are highly interactive and give participants the chance to discuss in-depth approaches to challenges they are facing on campus, share solutions, and learn strategies. These workshops are considered part of EDUCAUSE professional learning and career development offerings and as such require learning outcomes. Maximum of three presenters plus a moderator.

Facilitated Discussion Session (Typically 45 minutes)

Discussion sessions are opportunities for presenters to share campus challenges and solutions through conversational exchange. By actively engaging audience participants in dialogue about hot topics or broad issues, presenters of these sessions will rely on collective community experience among session attendees. This is more formal than a Meet and Mingle but less formal than a traditional breakout session. There is no room for “sage on the stage” in a facilitated discussion session; this is a chance to have organic, topically relevant, peer-to-peer learning experiences at the conference. Maximum of two facilitators.

Interactive Presentation (Long form: 45 minutes; Short form: 10 minutes)

These sessions are opportunities to share topics of interest, lesson learned, foresight, or evidence of impact related to the conference tracks. Long-form sessions are an opportunity to present in detail on a project, idea, or experience. These can be done solo or have multiple presenters (i.e., panel, moderated interviews, stacked presenters, etc.). Short-form sessions will be organized as lightning-round talks. These are best done solo because they will be stacked in a session block with related content. Regardless of length, these sessions should be innovative, thought provoking, and engaging. Maximum of three presenters plus a moderator.

Poster Session (two 60-minute sessions, Tuesday or Wednesday)

Posters give participants and presenters the opportunity to share and examine problems, issues, and solutions in a casual, personal environment through informal, interactive, brief presentations focused on effective practices, research findings, or technical solutions. As attendees visit this informal setting, presenters can discuss and share their work on a one-to-one basis. Presenters will use a poster display (and laptop and print materials if they wish) to demonstrate the features and functionality of the tool or program, as well as to provide a visual overview of the project. Presenters should also prepare a few introductory remarks to engage listeners in the subject. Maximum of two presenters.

Important Reminders

Registration: All accepted presenters are responsible for registering for the conference by the early-bird date, paying the conference registration fee, and securing and paying for travel and lodging. Please plan and budget accordingly before submitting your proposal. (Exceptions include accepted full- and half-day preconference workshop presenters, who may receive modest compensation in the form of an honorarium or a complimentary conference registration. EDUCAUSE will not cover any additional costs such as travel and lodging expenses, online tools, assessments, books, or other presentation materials.)

Sharing Resources: Presenters will be asked to upload related resources (documents or links) prior to their presentation. These resources provide support for the presentation and then become a part of the conference proceedings so that your valuable information is accessible beyond your session. If your proposal is selected, you will be provided with instructions on uploading your presentation materials.


Selection Process

Proposals are selected to ensure the conference offers a comprehensive, nonpromotional, objective, and diverse program. Attention will be given to diversity of institutions/organizations, presenters, and geographic location. Note: You may be invited to present in formats other than the one you selected or those noted in the proposal submission form.

Proposals will be reviewed by the Annual Conference Program Committee and Proposal Reviewers using the following criteria:

  • Relevance of topic: Is the topic of relevance, importance, value, and/or interest to higher education?
  • Proposed topic coverage: Does the proposal adequately cover content related to the proposers' learning objectives or key stated outcomes?
  • Presenter knowledge: Does the presenter or presenters have sufficient knowledge, expertise, and authority to address this topic based on evidence provided in the proposal and/or prior experience with or knowledge of the presenter?
  • Engagement strategies: Does the presenter include specific strategies relevant to event size, audience, and maturity of topic for engaging participants in the session content, and do those strategies align with the session’s learning objectives/outcomes?