Call for Programs

November 2016

Call for Programs (Pre-Conference, Concurrent Sessions, Big Ideas)
& Call for Reviewers Open

November 30, 2016

WEBINAR: Submitting a Conference Proposal

January 6, 2017

Call for Reviewers Closes

January 13, 2017

Call for all Programs Closes

January 23, 2017

Reviewers Assigned

January 24, 2017

WEBINAR: Peer Reviewing CACUSS Conference Proposals 

February 6, 2017

Reviewer Deadline

February 14, 2017

Final Reviews

March 6, 2017

Program Decision Notifications

March 20, 2017

Program Announced

April 11, 2017

WEBINAR: Presenting at the 2017 CACUSS Conference 

May 29, 2017

*Presentations Due

 

Dates are subject to change

 

*As part of the organization’s ongoing efforts towards accessibility and inclusivity and due to Shaw Centre technology requirements, all presentations must be received in advance of the conference. Presenters will not be able to use their own laptops to show their presentations. Should you require to change your presentation in any way, you may do so in the "speaker ready" room available during the conference.  More information on these technology requirements will be shared with successful program applicants.

Why Present?

CACUSS is a professional bilingual association representing and serving those individuals who work in Canadian post-secondary institutions in student affairs and services. The annual CACUSS conference brings together Student Affairs professionals from across the country representing colleges, universities, polytechnics and partners. Presenting at the CACUSS conference – whether individually or with colleagues – provides a rich opportunity for you to share your knowledge and experience, to gain new insights, and to exchange ideas and information.

Possible Session Topics

  • Examples of successful collaborations
  • Strategies for contending with emerging issues
  • Provocative new ideas or concepts
  • Researching the student experience
  • Proven practices in student affairs and services
  • Innovative experiences to enhance student learning outside of the classroom

There are several session formats to choose from:

45-Minute & 75-Minute Sessions

Opportunity to share research, programs or initiatives through an oral and visual medium and engage colleagues in an interactive experience. Presentations may include experiential learning activities, interaction related to current events, developing trends, research, divisional or regional issues, best practices and/or personal and professional development.

Poster Session

Opportunity to display research, programs or initiatives through a visual medium and engage colleagues in one-on-one dialogue. Poster should be designed to present information in a visual format that is easy to digest and which stimulates thought and further exploration. Presenter(s) should be available to present their poster presentation on Monday, June 12 and posters will remain in the showcase until end of the day on Tuesday, June 13th.

Big Ideas 

Big Ideas is powered by PechaKucha, a unique presentation format during which the speaker’s 20 slides auto-advance every 20 seconds. This creates a dynamic presentation that explores different aspects of the conference theme in an innovative way from a variety of voices within the Canadian student affairs profession.

See http://www.cacuss.ca/conference/Big_Ideas_.html 

Tips to Remember as you write your conference proposal

Successful proposals are those that capture the essence of your initiative, research or seminal ideas in very few words while succinctly explaining how you plan to engage session participants in exploring core concepts and new information.  The Program Committee will also accept proposals that achieve balance across the conference program on a range of topics and perspectives that represent the depth and breadth of our organization’s membership, emerging issues, regional and national interests, and institutional demographics. 

  • Do not use the forum as an opportunity to sell an idea or product.
  • Plan ahead.  Take advantage of the early call period to develop your ideas, engage with colleagues you plan to co-present with, and begin assembling your ideas.  A well-developed proposal is a well-presented program.  Write your program proposal in advance and copy and paste it into the online submission form.  This will allow you to work through the details of your program over time.  It also enables you to spell check your work before submitting your proposal.  Remember that points are allocated to “Organization” which includes spelling, grammar and thoroughness. This Planning Guide/Template will help you get started.
  • Ensure your session reflects your full consideration of issues of inclusivity, equity and accommodation.  If your proposal is accepted we will be requesting that you provide materials that you will be using during your presentation such as power point slides, handouts, Prezi links in advance as some conference attendees will want to review them before the presentation in order to fully participate.
  • Remember that all sessions should be designed for both attendees and presenters to learn from interactive exchange. Engaging your audience is one of the most critical aspects of a successful presentation, so don’t forget to include specific strategies for building interactivity during your session. Consider the following:
  • Clearly articulate intended learning outcomes—the specific knowledge to be acquired as a result of attending your session. You can use this Learning Outcomes Development Guide as a tool for developing your outcomes 
  • Understand the difference between Competencies and Learning Outcomes
  • Engaging your audience is one of the most critical aspects of a successful presentation, so don’t forget to include specific strategies for building interactivity during your session.
  • Develop a handout or resource for your audience to take with them.
  • Consider Inclusivity and Accessibility (see steps to writing a successful conference proposal).

Steps to Writing a Successful Conference Proposal

Successful proposals are those that capture the essence of your initiative, research or seminal ideas in very few words while succinctly explaining how you plan to engage session participants in exploring core concepts and new information.  The Program Committee will also accept proposals that achieve balance across the conference program on a range of topics and perspectives that represent the depth and breadth of our organization’s membership, emerging issues, regional and national interests and institutional demographics.

Here are some tips that can aid your proposal in gaining reviewer attention:

  1. Read the Call for Proposals carefully.  It is recommended that you write your submission on a document (e.g. Word, Google Docs) and copy and paste into the form when you are ready.
  2. Ask yourself a few basic questions:
    • Who might attend your session?
    • Which format might best serve to highlight key themes, engage participants, and convey meaningful new information?
    • What are the core outcomes that you hope to achieve during your session?  Do you want to gain new insights from participants that will inform further development of an idea or new approach?  Do you want to share lessons learned and key learning with attendees?  Are you grappling with a new concept or idea that you would like to share with others?
  3. Brainstorm with potential co-presenters or colleagues.
    • Determine the three or more takeaways that you want participants to learn and comprehend.
    • Identify creative strategies for accomplishing these takeaways.
    • Think about how you might effectively involve participants in your session.
    • Consider how you might continue the conversation after the conference.
  4. Use the Program Review Rubric as a guide to ensure you are including all aspects necessary for a successfully proposal.
  5. Ask an experienced presenter and/or colleague to provide feedback on your draft.
  6. Submit your proposal by the deadline!

Ensuring Your Presentation is Accessible for Everyone

One of the guiding principles of the CACUSS Program Committee is to provide accessible and inclusive conference content, so as to meet the diverse needs of all delegates. Please consider the following accessibility guidelines as you prepare your program:

  • If your proposal is accepted we will be requesting that you provide materials that you will be using during your presentation such as PowerPoint slides, handouts and Prezi links in advance as some conference attendees will want to review them before the presentation in order to fully participate. Some recommendations to ensure accessibility of PowerPoint and Prezi presentations include:

Simple design: plain background, limited text and visually stimulating

High colour contrast between foreground and background

The largest font possible (minimum of 16pt)

Avoid busy patterns in the background

Avoid clutter with too much text, images or both

It is a good idea to make a text-only version of PowerPoint and Prezi slides to make it easier to access the information using adaptive technology and convert to other formats.

During the session, presenters should verbally describe the content of videos or any written materials, including overheads or chalkboard notes for those audience members with vision loss

Consider the activities that are included in your presentation and strategies for adapting the activities to accommodate all participants. For example, events that require standing for long periods of time (i.e. meet and greet events) may not be welcoming to persons who use scooters or who cannot stand for extended periods.

Anticipate audience diversity when preparing. People may have different cultural, ethnic, religious or racial backgrounds, be of different ages, genders and sexual orientations, and have a range of disabilities whether visual or not. When writing, speaing, or using images, use examples that reflect the diversity of identities and perspectives.

Descriptors that refer to personal attributes such as race, gender, sexual orientation, disability or age, for example, tend to over-emphasize and draw undue attention to the distinguishing attribute. Avoid the use of descriptors unless they are relevant and valid.

Inclusive language strives to promote all people, regardless of difference, as full and valued members of society by selecting vocabulary that avoids exclusion, the use of false stereotypes, and the use of descriptors that portray groups of certain people as dependent, powerless or less valued than others.

For more information, please see Minimum Expectations of CACUSS Presenters, a document shared by host Carleton University.

Preparing an Effective Big Ideas Presentation

CACUSS Big Ideas: Powered by PechaKucha is a unique presentation format during which the speaker’s 20 slides auto-advance every 20 seconds. This creates a dynamic presentation that explores different aspects of the conference theme in an innovative way from a variety of voices within the Canadian student affairs profession. For more information about PechaKucha, please visit http://www.pechakucha.org.

Some Guidelines for your slides for Big Ideas for PowerPoint:

  • Simple design: plain background, limited text and visually stimulating
  • High colour contrast between foreground and background
  • The largest font possible (a minimum of 16pt)
  • Avoid busy patterns in the background
  • Avoid clutter with too much text, images or both

Preparing an Effective Poster Presentation

Poster presentations showcase research or institutional programs in a format that engages colleagues in informal dialogue one-on-one.  Information is conveyed in various ways, incorporating signs, graphs, posters and/or material presented on a laptop computer.  Posters are designed to present content and visuals in a manner that is easy to digest and stimulates thought and further exploration.  An effective poster presentation addresses a central theme, presents relevant and useful information, and stimulates discussion. ***NEW for 2017:  Posters will remain in the showcase for TWO days - Monday, June 12 and Tuesday, June 13***

Some tips for developing effective poster presentations include:

  • Display - Prepare a display that captures your central topic and ideas in easily understood printed text and graphics, ensuring that you include a title, institution name/logo, relevant (brief) details and visuals. As conference attendees visit your display, you will have the opportunity to discuss your poster topic with them. 
  • Oral Remarks - Prepare a few remarks that will welcome participants to your poster. Introductions are in order. Find out who they are, where they work, and why your poster is of interest to them. A short introduction of about 1 - 2 minutes can give an overview of your poster and begin the conversation. These conversations can be very interactive, and accompanied by live or recorded demonstrations of tools/projects and/or websites that provide more detailed information.
  • Handouts and Web Site - Prepare a one-page handout that summarizes your poster and includes contact information, a URL if applicable, and a list of additional resources that provide more extensive or in-depth information beyond what is available on the poster itself