Call for Proposals is Closed for the 2018 AIR Forum

Thank you to those who submitted a proposal for the 2017 AIR Forum. Our review process will take place October-January. Notifications will be sent to proposal authors by January 31, 2018.

More than 300 AIR members read, evaluate, and comment on proposals each year. Each proposal receives a minimum of five reviews. They are recruited and selected through an annual call for volunteers. Reviewers must have attended a prior Forum and so have experienced firsthand the quality and range of sessions offered at the Forum. Reviewers use a standard rubric to rate each type of proposal.

Call for Proposals has Closed

Topic Areas – Updated for 2018 Forum

Please review the descriptions for each of the new topic areas to determine which best fits your proposal.

This topic area includes the process of identifying stakeholders and their decision support needs. Proposals in this topic area may include:

  • reviews or results of research and policy relevant to higher education decision support (e.g. federal higher education data policy, state higher education policy and administration, large-scale studies of higher education topics);
  • working with stakeholders in the decision support process;
  • consideration of large datasets or surveys at the institutional, system, or organizational level.

This topic area includes the technical functions of institutional research in providing data, information, and analysis for decision support.

Proposals in this topic area may include:

  • data collection tools and methods;
  • data analysis tools and methods;
  • techniques to create more efficiencies in mandatory and other regular reporting processes;
  • dashboard and visualization tools and technologies to provide accessible data and information directly to consumers;
  • development of information to support stakeholders in understanding and making decisions

This topic area includes operational, budgetary, and strategic planning and evaluation functions, such as those associated with assessment, both formative and summative, and formal accreditation requirements.

Proposals in this topic area may include:

  • processes and results of planning efforts to improve institutional, system, or organizational operations (e.g. faculty workload studies, HR studies, space planning);
  • processes and results of collaborative budgetary planning efforts;
  • effective practices related to IR’s role in organizational strategic planning;
  • processes and results of assessment and accountability efforts;
  • effective practices in regional, national, and specialized accreditation

This topic area includes IR’s role in ensuring an organization-wide data strategy as well as efforts related to data governance.

Proposals in this topic area may include:

  • effective practices in data governance;
  • effective practices in development and use of data warehouses;
  • processes in developing and coordinating organization-wide data strategy;
  • effective practices related to data privacy, security, compliance, and ethics considerations;
  • effective practices in data quality assurance;
  • processes related to accessibility of data and information to appropriate users.

This topic area includes efforts to train, coach, and educate constituents related to the use of data, analysis, and information to inform decision making. It also includes scholarly work to inform and improve the work of IR, IE, and assessment.

Proposals in this topic area may include:

  • effective practices in training and coaching related to data and information use;
  • effective practices in training and coaching related to data collection and analysis;
  • processes to connect internal and external producers and users of data;
  • results of scholarly research in IR, IE, planning, and assessment

This topic area includes the organization and management of IR offices and functions. It also includes intentional development of professional staff and leadership development of IR, IE, and assessment professionals.

Proposals in this topic may include:

  • effective practices in organization of the IR function inside the office (e.g. tracking requests, organizing and providing access to results of institutional research)
  • effective practices in project management, particularly when balancing IR, IE, planning, and assessment work
  • processes to review and select technologies to conduct the work of IR, IE, planning, and assessment
  • professional development of IR, IE and assessment staff
  • leadership development and succession planning of an IR office

Session Formats

Please review the descriptions for each format to determine which best fits your proposal.

45 minute session with one to three presenters.

Speaker Sessions share innovative applications, research practices, and professional work products in IR, assessment, planning, or other data-centered functions. Room Setup and Technology: Speaker Sessions will be set up in theater style seating with standard audio/visual including: Materials Table, Podium, Microphone, Projector, and Screen. Internet access is not guaranteed and presenters must bring a laptop.

This is the most competitive format. Approximately 150 of the anticipated 400 proposals for this format will be accepted.

60 minute session with three to five presenters.

Panel Sessions include multiple perspectives about an IR application, practice, or topic of interest. Panels are composed of three to five presenters with one member serving as a moderator. Panelists should represent different functions within a college (e.g., IR, IT, Dean), or presenters from different organizations and always have identifiable, unique points of view about the topic. Room Setup and Technology: Panel Session will be set-up in theater style seating with basic audio/visual including: Materials Table, Podium, Panelist Table, 2 Microphones, Projector, and Screen. Internet access is not guaranteed and presenters must bring a laptop.

45 minute session with one or two leaders.

Discussion Group Sessions are highly interactive group discussions that focus on a current topic or issue in the field. The session leader (presenter) briefly presents opening remarks to define the session and set the context. Three to five questions submitted with the session proposal provide the structure for the discussion that follows. The session leader’s role also includes encouraging participants to share their perspectives and provides a summary and closure to the discussion. Discussions may be led by an individual or two co-leaders. Room Setup and Technology: Discussion Groups will be scheduled in a room set up with semi-circle chairs with a presenter table at the front. A flip chart and markers are available upon request. No A/V, laptop, projector, or internet access is provided or available.

Visual display, with one 45-minute Q&A session, one to three presenters.

Poster Presentation Sessions visually communicate the purpose, research approach, data sources, and outcomes of a scholarly or applied research project study. Poster Presentation Sessions are displayed on shared free-standing board space (two per board) with each poster allotted an area approximately 4’ x 4’ (half of a 4’ x 8’ board). The poster display boards and push pins are provided by AIR. Posters will be scheduled at a pre-assigned board in or near the Exhibit Hall. Audio/visual support and Internet access is not provided or available. There are no materials tables.

Interactive half-day (3½ hour) or full-day (7 hour) sessions, one to three presenters.

Workshops are held Monday and Tuesday before the Forum. There is limited seating and attendees pay an additional fee to attend. Workshops engage participants in learning about practical tools and techniques, research, or statistics. The ideal workshop includes a mixture of lecture style teaching, along with individual/group exercises, demonstrations, and discussions. Room Setup and Technology: Most workshops will be set up in classroom style seating with standard audio/visual including: Materials Table, Podium, Microphone, Projector, and Screen. Internet access not provided unless requested and approved. Presenters must bring a laptop.

Frequently Asked Questions

Important Dates

September 22, 2017

  • Call for Proposals Opens

October 22, 2017

  • Proposal Submission Deadline

October 2017 – January 2018

  • Proposal Reviews and Acceptance Decisions

January 2018

  • Final Proposal Status Notifications Sent

March 23, 2018

  • Scholarly Paper Upload Deadline for Icon in the Program Book
  • Presenter Registration Deadline to be Listed in the Program Book

May 29 - June 1, 2018

  • AIR Forum


Need more help?

Send a member of the Forum Team an e-mail at forum@airweb.org or call us at 850-391-6345.