Preparing Your Proposal

Below are frequently asked questions for preparing your proposal.

  1. Do I have to be a member to submit a proposal?
  2. What types of proposals does the AAS consider for inclusion on the formal program?
  3. What alternative formats will be accepted for the 2018 Annual Conference?
  4. How many scholarly sessions may I participate in?
  5. How many sessions may I organize?
  6. What happens if my name appears on more than one proposal?
  7. What are the responsibilities of session organizers and participants?
  8. What guidelines are in place for chairing a session?
  9. Where can I connect with other members of colleagues to collaborate on a session proposal?
  10. Who makes the decision to accept proposals?
  11. What criteria are used in reviewing and accepting proposals?
  12. How are individual paper proposals integrated into the program?
  13. What general tips help in putting together a session panel that gets accepted?
  14. When will I be notified whether my proposal was accepted?
  15. If my proposal is not accepted, can I still be involved in the annual conference?

 

 1. Do I have to be a member to submit a proposal?

 No. AAS membership is not required to submit a proposal for consideration for the AAS Annual Conference. However, AAS members receive a significant discount on annual conference registration fees. 

 Read more about the benefits of membership in the AAS, including income-based annual dues.

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  2. What type of proposals does the AAS consider for inclusion on the formal program?

 The program committee considers organized panel sessions, roundtable, and workshop session proposals as well as individual papers submissions. Below are general requirements of each proposal type.

a. Organized Panels proposals. Organized panels are paper-based session types. These proposal types should include: A panel title, a panel abstract (250 word max.), a Chair, 3-4 Paper Presenters, paper titles and abstracts for each paper being presented (250 word max for each paper abstract), and a Discussant.

b. Roundtable session proposals. Roundtables are discussion based sessions—no formal papers are presented. Instead a group of panelists will discuss a particular topic by sharing views and expertise on the subject matter. Roundtable proposals should include: A session title and abstract that describes the views each discussant will share during the session (max. 350 words), a Chair, and 3-5 Discussants.

c. Workshop session proposals. We are continuing Workshop sessions dedicated to teaching and professional development. This panel category should be particularly appropriate for sessions dealing with language pedagogy, the use of instructional technology in the classroom, new tools for research, tips on publishing a first book, etc.  Workshops proposals should include: an abstract (max. 350 words), a Chair and a 3-5 presenters.

d. Individual Paper proposals. Each individual paper abstract proposal should include a paper author data and 250 word abstract. The program committee will  group highly scored Individual Papers together to create a cohesive panel of papers based around a similar topic. A member of the Program Committee will chair the session.

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 3. What alternative formats will be accepted for the 2018 Annual Conference?

The Program Committee supports innovative formats that will encourage bold thinking, lively dialogue, and audience involvement. We urge panel organizers to explore ways in which ideas can be communicated most effectively, and ways in which the audience can contribute to the liveliness of the dialogue. Successful presentations include well-crafted remarks, rather a paper read verbatim. We also encourage variety in presentation format. 

The following list of potential formats for the panel illustrates a range of styles, but is not meant to confine your options:

  • Formats that introduce, at the outset, a clash of perspectives, interpretations, or methodologies.
  • Formats that limit each paper author/presenter to ten or fifteen minutes to explain the main idea of the paper.
  • Formats permitting a joint panel discussion on a single theme or book as a part of the panel session.
  • Formats in which commentators begin by summarizing and commenting on the papers and to which the paper writers then reply.
  • Formats that allow sharply focused commentary from the audience early on.
  • Formats in which knowledgeable members of the audience are encouraged to prepare comments of their own.
  • Formats in which a single, major paper, film, or book is the subject of attention and on which other papers and all the commentary are focused.

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4. How many sessions may I participate in?

You may participate in only one (1) session on the program, no matter the role or session type. The rationale behind this rule is to allow for as many members as possible to participate as presenters in the annual conference. Additionally, the large number of sessions and scheduling conflicts prohibits the AAS from allowing multiple appearances.  The one appearance rule refers to ALL session types: Organized panels, Roundtables and Workshops and ALL roles (chair, paper presenter, and/or discussant).  However, an individual may have multiple roles within the same one session.  

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5. How many sessions may I organize?

An individual may organize multiple sessions, but may only actively participate (as chair, paper presenter, or discussant) in one session. Organizers are not considered active participants.

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6. What happens if my name appears on more than one proposal?

Your proposals will be eliminated from consideration if your name appears on more than one scholarly proposal. As such, failure to comply with the "one scholarly proposal" rule will adversely impact other members listed on each proposal. If your name is not immediately recognized by the committee as participating in more than one session and should the proposal be accepted, you will be asked to withdraw from the additional session(s). Your name may only appear on more than one session in the role of “Organizer.”

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7. What are the responsibilities of session organizers and participants?

All participants share a professional responsibility to support the organization with their conference registration fees and to adhere to posted registration deadlines.

Once accepted to the formal conference program, each participant also has a professional and ethical obligation to appear, or locate suitable replacements in the event of an unavoidable withdrawal. If participants who withdraw do not communicate their absence or make alternative arrangements, they will be considered "no-shows," a designation that will make it difficult for the panelist to participate at future meetings.

Session organizers should inform their proposal’s participants of these requirements before submitting a proposal. The session organizer is also responsible for ensuring that their panelists promptly comply with these requirements.

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8. What guidelines are in place for chairing a session?

Every session proposal should be submitted with a session chair. If a proposal is submitted without a pre-designated chair, that does not automatically disqualify it. However, the role of the chair is to ensure the panel remains on-track and on time and introduces panelists. If a proposal does not have a chair or discussant, the proposal should indicate the reason (i.e. innovative panel format, etc.).

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9. Where can I connect with other members or colleagues to collaborate on a session proposal?

Once the call for proposals opens, the AAS will open an online forum for individuals seeking to connect with colleagues hoping to create a session or join a proposal currently being developed. 

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10. Who makes the decision to accept proposals?

The Program Committee reviews all proposals and selects the sessions to be held at the upcoming annual conference. The committee consists of 10 members appointed by each of the AAS Area Councils. These 10 members are divided into subcommittees for each area (China and Inner Asia, Japan & Korea, South Asia & Southeast Asia, and Inter-area/Border Crossing. These subcommittees will review all proposals types submitted within each designated geographic area. There are 2-4 Individual Paper panels formed within each area of study and a member of the Program Committee will chair these sessions. 

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11. What criteria are used in reviewing and accepting proposals?

The Program Committee approves proposals on the basis of their quality in relation to the others submitted.

The committee will also: attempt to include sessions on a wide variety of subjects and approaches, including scholarly, pedagogical, and professional subjects; consciously support the inclusion of panels focused on topics of concern in all geographic areas of Asia; encourage the presentation of new scholarship in social science disciplines under-represented at AAS conferences; strive to balance its selections between topics of continuing interest and new topics to which little or no attention has been paid; and try to span different time periods and subject matters in sessions.

The committee makes every effort to assure diverse representation through the inclusion of minorities, women, graduate students, and international colleagues, and will seek to reflect the regional and disciplinary diversity of the association's membership and Asian Studies community.

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12. How are individual paper proposals integrated into the program?

The Program Committee organizes sessions from accepted individual paper proposals submitted within all geographic areas of study. The AAS conference is mostly a panel-based conference, and the acceptance rate for Individual Papers is very low (approx. 10%). With an average of 360 sessions presented each year, approximately only 15 are sessions created from accepted Individual Papers.  We encourage individuals to network and connect with other AAS members or submit individual papers to any of the AAS regional conferences instead or connect with colleagues to organize or participate in an organized session proposal.  See the AAS website for the public forum of People seeking Sessions/Sessions seeking People.

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13. What general tips help in putting together a session that gets accepted?

Session organizers are advised to diversify their panel. Multi-disciplinary and/or multi-institutional representation as well as gender balance and a combination of junior and senior scholars are strongly encouraged for all proposals. Additionally, the panel abstract for Organized panels is extremely important and should accurately convey the ideas that will be presented; panel paper abstracts should be clear and concise and form a cohesive panel that supports the overall purpose of the panel session.  Roundtable proposals should submit one overall abstract that clearly describes the views each discussant will share regarding the topic. 

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14. When will I be notified whether my proposal was accepted?

Session organizers will be notified by email during the week of September 25, 2017. Generally, all participants listed on accepted proposals are copied, but session organizers have the final responsibility of notifying the members of the proposed panel of the Program Committee's decision. If you do not receive an official e-mail by the 29th of September, it may be because you did not complete the submission process properly, your email address may be listed incorrectly, or your email may have blocked the automated message. Please e-mail the conference manager at aasconference@asian-studies.org

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15. If my proposal is not accepted, can I still be involved in the annual conference?

Yes. The AAS welcomes all participants to the annual conference, whether they are presenters or not. Your attendance plays a very important role in the dynamics of a successful session and discussion.

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