Proposal Submission FAQs and Tips

How do I create an account?

All applicants (including co-presenters) must create an individual account in the database to submit proposals and register for the conference. Click on “Create Account” on the upper right corner of your screen, and you will be prompted to provide your name, email, and a password.

If you already have an account, click on “Log in” on the upper right corner and you will be prompted for your email and password. (NOTE: If you had an account with us in 2017, your information will already be in the database, so you will not have to create an account.)

How many proposals may I submit?

Each applicant may submit only one paper proposal – to one area – per year.

However, proposals for creative writing pieces or discussion-based roundtables can be in addition to a traditional, scholarly paper proposal.  The database only allows one submission per applicant, so you must contact Kathleen Lacey ( to enter that second proposal into the database.

How do I submit a proposal?

After you create or log in to your account, you will be able to submit a proposal. On your account dashboard, click on “Proposal Management” on the menu on the left side of the screen. This will prompt a dropdown menu; click on “Submit Proposal.” At the top of the next screen, click on “Create New,” and you will be prompted to designate the area to which you are applying, the type of presentation you are proposing, and the title and abstract of your proposal. (NOTE: You are limited to 50 words for the title and 500 words for the abstract.) You will then be prompted to add additional presenters, if applicable. If there are no co-presenters, click submit.

You will get a “success!” screen and a confirmation email that your proposal has been submitted.

Can I submit a paper that I already published or presented?

A proposal should be for original work that has not been published or presented elsewhere.

Can undergraduates apply to present at SWPACA?

Yes. However, unless you are applying to co-present a paper with a professor, you will need to submit your proposal to our Undergraduate Presentations area. After an initial review, your paper will be moved to its intended area.

How do I submit a panel proposal?

Each member of the panel should create an account and submit individual proposals. However, within the abstract, each member should make clear that their paper is part of a pre-formed panel, and include the subject of the panel and the other presenters on the panel. After all proposals have been submitted, the proposed panel chair should email the appropriate Area Chair to confirm receipt of panel information. (Find Area Chairs’ contact information at

Note that panels must include 3-4 papers/presentations. Panel proposals with less or more presentations will be integrated or split up into other panels.

How do I submit a proposal for a roundtable?

Click on “Submit Proposal,” and designate “Type” as “Roundtable.”

In the abstract, note that that your proposal is for a roundtable. When prompted to add users, add the additional members of the roundtable discussion. (NOTE: To add presenters, they must have an account within the database.)

What happens after I submit my proposal?

After submitting a proposal, you will receive an automated acknowledgment email. Please note that this is not the same as an acceptance.

Area Chairs are responsible for vetting proposals per relevance, merit, the scholarly standards governing their fields, and various other factors.

SWPACA practices rolling reviews of individual, panel, and roundtable proposals.  Area Chairs try to review and accept or reject proposals within two weeks of receipt. However, given our Area Chairs’ differing teaching/administrative schedules, the wait time for conference acceptance/rejection decisions may exceed this two-week time frame.

If you have not received an email notification regarding the status of your proposal after two weeks, we encourage you to contact the appropriate Area Chair directly via email. Find Area Chairs’ contact information at

If I submit a proposal, am I automatically registered for the conference?

No. Registration is a separate process, though we use the same database. If you return to the main menu/dashboard, under “Registration Options,” click on “Add Attendees.” You will be presented with your personal information. In the far right column, click on “Register.” This will allow you to choose your registration category (see for registration information). Click “Save.”

After you’ve clicked “Save,” go back to the main menu/dashboard, and under “Registration Options,” click on “Current Orders.” You’ll see a link that will allow you to pay your registration online through PayPal. If you would like to pay by check or money transfer, choose “Pay Later,” and you can pay at the conference.

If I need assistance with the proposal or registration process, who should I contact?

For additional conference proposal assistance, contact:

Tamy Burnett

Kathleen Lacey
Area Chair, Student Awards, & Professional Development Coordinator