AALHE 2021

The Submission Portal is now live!


Call for Proposal Submissions: AALHE 11th Annual Conference Online

We invite you to submit proposals for the Association for the Assessment of Learning in Higher Education (AALHE) 11th Annual Conference to be held online June 7-11, 2021. This event offers scholars, practitioners, faculty, and administrators in higher education an opportunity to network, exchange knowledge, and share experiences for improvement of student learning and institutional quality. Attendees will have access to professional development at all levels, from novice to advanced, and opportunities to interact with colleagues from across the nation and world. We welcome proposals representing assessment scholarship and practice across the diversity of higher education institutions.

Presentations will take place online in a live (synchronous) format from Monday, June 7th through Friday, June 11th between 10AM and 5PM CT.  Additional recorded and On-demand content will be available to conference attendees between July 12th - 31st. Presenters should plan to be present at the time their session is scheduled. All session presenters are responsible for their own conference registration fees (click here for registration information). Presenters who elect to submit an On-Demand presentation or poster must submit their materials two weeks prior to the conference.

The proposal submission portal will open on Monday, Dec 14th and will close on Sunday, Feb 7th.  Notifications of proposal decisions will be sent in early March 2021.

AALHE 2021 Online Theme: Exemplars, Encores, and Enigmas

This year’s conference theme, Exemplars, Encores, and Enigmas, emphasizes:

  • Practical examples of assessment implementation or theory-into-practice work that support the assessment community (Exemplars) -  Examples may include conversations on the practice of assessment such as effective strategies colleagues could adapt to their own institutional settings.
  • Presentations and conversations updating previously established assessment practices and their implementation in classroom and organizational settings (Encores) - Examples may include examination, expansion, or replication of previously established practices in light of contemporary issues in higher education such as inclusion, rapid adjustment to external forces, and assessment fairness in online, hybrid, and traditional settings.
  • Presentation and discussion of big pictures, compelling assessment questions and theories, and their impact on institutions, practitioners, and diverse learners in classroom, institutional, and real-world settings (Enigmas) - Examples may include questions, change, or problems facing assessment being addressed through research on new innovations or not-as-of-yet best practices.

Proposals should address how assessment can be adapted and used in a wide range of institutional settings, including but not limited to community colleges, regional and research-intensive universities, large and small public and private colleges, and minority-serving institutions.

To achieve the broadest possible diversity of perspectives, proposals are particularly welcome from early-career assessment professionals, new AALHE members, and first-time conference attendees. We also actively encourage discipline-specific assessment proposals.

The completed proposal should include the following sections:

  • Primary author name, title, discipline, organization, and email address
  • Names of additional authors
  • Session title
  • Session type: Live Exemplar, Encore, or Enigma 45-minute session, Skills Development 90-minute session, or optional On-Demand poster or pre-recorded presentation (see session types below)
  • Session abstract (100-150 words)
  • Background and evidence of effectiveness of work being presented (250 words)
  • Session learning outcomes (100 words)
  • Session delivery methods and timeline (150 words)
  • Intended participant level of experience: beginner, intermediate, or advanced
  • Technology needed for audience engagement (open discussion, flipped session, breakout rooms, chat on outside platform such as Twitter or Slack, or none beyond the presentation/lecture and Zoom chat)
  • Other considerations for reviewers (if any)
  • Related materials (file upload for Skills Development sessions)

Within the proposal, individuals will be asked to select session type and provide clarification if submitting for a discipline-specific session. The session types are below:

  • Exemplar Live Concurrent Session (45 min)
  • Encore Live Concurrent Session (45 min)
  • Enigma Live Concurrent Session (45 min)
  • Discipline-specific Live Concurrent Session (45 min) - Please note in your proposal what specific discipline your session addresses, for example, Humanities, Sciences, or
  • Live Skills Development Session (90 min)
  • On-Demand Session (posters or pre-recorded videos any length less than 60 min)

Please note that live session availability is limited for AALHE 2021 Online due to the high level of engagement necessary to make an online event personable and valuable. For this reason, it is possible some high-quality proposals will not be accepted for a live session.

Individuals submitting a proposal will have the option to indicate if they would be interested in discussing presenting their work in a future webinar, workshop, or other online event with AALHE. We welcome ideas from our members as well as the assessment community at large, and as an organization we are invested in furthering scholarship within the field and providing professional development for the assessment community throughout the year.

Proposal Review Criteria and Session Format

AALHE offers a balanced, informative, focus on assessment processes and how they describe and improve student learning. This conference seeks to empower and embolden all campus assessment practitioners and educators to consider how their assessment practices fit into the conference framework. The proposal selection committee will include experienced assessment professionals from a diverse range of backgrounds and areas of expertise. View the proposal review rubric here.

Exemplars - 45 minutes live - Examples of assessment data, best practices, findings, and use of findings for improvement in teaching and learning

Encores - 45 minutes live - Examination, Expansion, or Replication of previously established, presented, or published practices or findings in assessment

Enigmas - 45 minutes live - Presentation and discussion of big pictures, compelling assessment questions, and theories in scholarship of teaching and learning, and their impact on institutions, practitioners, and diverse learners in classroom, institutional, and real-world settings

Discipline-specific Sessions - 45 minutes live - Sessions focused on one aspect of the conference theme (Exemplars, Encores, or Enigmas) with a particular emphasis on close discussion of specific academic disciplines (ie assessment as related to Humanities, Biological Sciences, etc.).

Skill Development Sessions - 90 minutes live - Interactive skill development sessions in areas of work commonly assigned to assessment professionals such as program review, data analysis, survey development, co-curricular assessment, curriculum mapping, data visualization, prior learning assessment, institutional research, data collection tools, writing test items, strategic planning, and backward design

On-Demand Posters or Single Papers - less than 60 minutes pre-recorded - Optional poster sessions or pre-recorded presentations for presenters wishing to submit a proposal but unable to present a live Exemplar, Encore, or Enigma session.

Panel (1 session) – Careers in Assessment – Practical advice for assessment professionals navigating a dynamic job market.

Presenting work in an online space presents unique challenges as well as unique opportunities. Individuals interested in submitting a live session proposal are encouraged to take the online format into consideration and move beyond the "lecture" modality. For more information on how to innovate and adapt in a virtual environment, we encourage interested parties to view the presentation, Taking Advantage of Online Opportunities, by Fred Barrack. Click here to download the materials. View the presentation here.

Thank you for your willingness to share your time, energy, and ideas at AALHE 2021. Please direct any questions [email protected]. We look forward to reading your work.

The Submission Portal is now live!