General Submission Guidelines for Paper & Presentation Proposals

General Guidelines for Presentation Proposals for Annual Conferences

Proposals must include the title of the presentation and an abstract of no more than 250 words that describes the topic, approach, sources and format of your presentation, as well as 3 keywords. Proposals will be blind reviewed and therefore names and affiliations of presenters should be omitted from the proposal and indicated only on the online submission form. Be sure to indicate on the submission form any audio/visual or technology needs you may have. 

The program committee for annual conferences welcomes proposals for scholarly and research presentations in several formats, including individual papers, three-person panels, lecture demonstrations, workshops, working groups, and roundtables. Alternative formats may also be proposed. All presenters must be members of DSA. 

Individual Papers: Paper presentations must be based on unpublished research or interpretation and must be designed for oral delivery within 20 minutes, including use of audiovisual aids. Papers running eight double-spaced pages are ideal. The programming committee will arrange individual paper submission into panels of three with a moderator. 

Panels: Panels are 90 minutes in length and should consist of three 20-minute papers on a related topic and 30 minutes for questions/answers. We also welcome panels that take a delivery response format, in which formal respondents comment on one or two presenters’ work. Panel proposals should consist of one document that contains a 150-word summary of the larger panel topic and individual paper proposals as outlined above for each presenter. The title of the proposed panel and the panelists’ names should be included in the appropriate fields of the submission form only. Only one member of the panel needs to submit the panel proposal. Proposed panels will not be assigned a moderator. If panels would like a moderator, they may include their own moderator with their proposal if they wish. 

Lecture-Demonstrations may run either 45 or 90 minutes. On the submission form clearly indicate your requirements for space and time. If two or more applicants are involved, one person may submit the proposal but the names of all presenters (include performers or demonstration assistants) must be listed on the submission form. 

Workshops: Movement workshops may run either 45 or 90 minutes. If two or more applicants are involved, one person may submit the proposal but the names of all presenters (include performers or demonstration assistants) must be listed on the submission form. On the submission form clearly indicate the type of space required and the recommended attire for participants. 

Roundtables: Roundtables may run either 45 or 90 minutes. Presenters may propose a roundtable discussion on a particular topic. One member of the roundtable must submit the proposal and submission form, but the names of all members of the roundtable must be listed on the submission form. Ongoing and 

New Working Groups: At each conference, ongoing working groups meet around the topics of: Dance and Music; Dance and Technology; Dance History Teachers; Dancing the Long Nineteenth Century; Diversity; Early Dance; Latin American, Latinx, and Caribbean Dance Studies; Popular, Social, and Vernacular; Practice as Research; and Students. The Program Committee welcomes working groups to submit panels or movement workshops in addition to the working group meetings. 

Dance Works and Screendances: Dance works and screendances should run no more than 12 minutes. Presenters will be grouped into performance panels or screendance showings, depending on the space available at the conference site. It should be noted that there are no submission fees, screening fees, or other fees or revenue for the presentation of dance works or screendances. There is no technical support for dance works. Proposals should include a link to a trailer, full work (preferable), or excerpt of the work to be shown. 

Alternate Formats: Alternate formats may run either 45 or 90 minutes. We also welcome submissions of collaborative presentations and other formats that enable the active participation of conference participants. These might include ad-hoc Working Groups, where applicants propose a one-time working group that brings participants together to engage with materials (scholarly papers, published books, dance practices or productions) read and/or viewed prior to the conference. If you are interested in this or another alternative format, please include the following additional information in your proposal: an outline of the topic and an explanation of the structure of the presentation. The organizer should submit the proposal and complete the submission form online, being sure to indicate all participants on the submission form. 


  • All presenters must be members of DSA, or must become a member at the time of registering for the conference. For membership information, visit the Join Us section of our website.
  • You may submit only one proposal to the Program Committee, and your name may appear on the conference program only once as a presenter. However, you may also serve as a moderator, although not for your own panel, and if invited you may speak on a panel honoring another scholar 
  • Graduate students interested in having their submissions considered for the Selma Jeanne Cohen Award or in applying for a Graduate Student Travel Award should consult our Awards page. 
  • Except as noted above do not submit videotapes, slides, or photographs. 
  • At this time, if a paper is accepted for presentation at the conference, only the author of the paper may deliver the presentation. See the Conferences section of our website for updated information regarding remote presentations.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Please click HERE to view FAQ.