The ACMHE conference is an annual interdisciplinary forum for all aspects of scholarship and research on contemplative approaches in higher education.
For 2019, the ACMHE conference will share how contemplative practices, including mindfulness practices, can support and sustain learning communities that engage multiple ways of knowing and foster a more just, inclusive, sustainable, and compassionate world. In academia, this can function as a form of radical well-being, as contemplative approaches offer means of sustaining ourselves through institutional and societal challenges. In this way, the goals of the 2019 ACMHE conference are to explore the importance of self-care, to emphasize the importance of expanding our sense of care itself, and to learn how this is demonstrated in the field of higher education in ways that lead to more caring, compassionate campuses and communities.
Presentations at the conference might explore topics including, but not limited to:
- How are we creating learning environments that engage multiple perspectives, understandings, needs, and ways of knowing?
- How can a praxis of care in the academy bolster our understanding of ourselves, our relations, the structures we live and work in, and our conditioned and learned patterns of behavior?
- What practices, strategies, or research has been done?
- How do these approaches promote respect, cooperation, and justice? How can that understanding lead us towards making change, if necessary, towards conditions of greater equity?
- How do these approaches help us move through feelings of loneliness and isolation in our institutions?
- Why is a conference such as this needed now? How do topics such as well-being and self-care, within and beyond educational institutions, speak more broadly to the tensions in today’s world?
We hope that this year’s conference will seed new connections and friendships to facilitate a community of well-being and care in academia, and that through attending, you will be supported in addressing this work in your own communities.
The ACMHE conference schedule emphasizes presentations led by scholars, researchers, and practitioners across campus departments, including students and student groups. Students are especially encouraged to submit presentation proposals. Shorter sessions (60 minutes) will offer research presentations, and longer sessions (75 minutes) are available for experiential workshops, contemplative practice sessions, performances, roundtable conversations, or other creative modes of sharing. (All of these are also referred to as “parallel sessions,” as several are run concurrently in the schedule.)
We encourage presenters to use the conference as a place to ask and hold questions that may not yet have answers, and to thoughtfully assess their own ability to skillfully facilitate energetic discussion on these topics during their session. We are particularly interested in:
- presenters who model contemplative pedagogies and approaches in how they conduct their sessions;
- proposals that identify the specific context in which the work is situated (e.g., academic disciplines, contemplative disciplines, students’ social identities and demographics, institutional history and location, etc.);
- presentations which offer practical, experience-based recommendations for developing and integrating contemplative approaches in higher education.
Parallel session proposals are being accepted through Monday, April 29, 2019.
The poster session offers a valuable opportunity to connect with colleagues across many disciplines while viewing summaries of recent research. Poster proposals are accepted on a rolling basis through August 31, 2019.
Faculty, staff, students, researchers, and administrators from all sectors of academia are encouraged to submit proposals for parallel sessions, posters, or both.
The parallel session proposal deadline is Monday, April 29th, 2019.
- Students, researchers, postdocs, and professionals from all areas of higher education, including faculty, staff, and administrators, are invited to submit proposals for consideration.
- Presenters must be ACMHE members. If you are not already a member of the ACMHE, you must join when registering for the conference. All members receive a $50 discount on the conference registration fee.
- Proposals must indicate a session type: 60 minute presentation, 75 minute workshop, 75 minute roundtable, or poster. Please refer to the session descriptions for more information.
- Parallel session proposals must describe the planned structure of the session, such as the use of visuals, materials, interactive practices or exercises, Q & A, discussion, etc.
- Parallel session proposals should be designed to make use of the available time. Please consider how much material can reasonably be covered in your session.
- We encourage presenters to include time for questions and discussion; session time is limited, so please thoughtfully assess your ability to skillfully facilitate discussion during your session.
- We suggest this resource from CAST on Universal Design for Learning to help ensure that your presentation is accessible.
- Audio-visual equipment, including digital projector and screen, may be requested for parallel sessions on the proposal submission form. Please note digital projectors and screens will only provided in half of the breakout spaces.
- The submission deadline for parallel session proposals is April 29, 2019, at midnight PDT (-07:00 UTC).
- Posters were accepted for review on a rolling basis through August 31st, 2019, at midnight PDT (-07:00 UTC).
- Proposals will be reviewed and selected by the conference committee.
How should I design my parallel session?
We encourage presenters to model their session(s) on their own practice, modes of teaching, or styles of engagement with faculty, staff, and students.
We also encourage you to identify the specific context in which your work is situated (e.g., academic discipline(s), contemplative disciplines, students’ social identities and demographics, institutional history and location, etc.), and, when possible, to offer practical, experience-based recommendations for developing and integrating contemplative approaches in higher education.
We recommend consulting these guidelines for Universal Design for Learning (CAST, 2018) to help ensure that your presentation is accessible.
On a practical level, parallel sessions should be designed to make use of the available time. We know that 60 or 75 minutes can seem brief, so please consider how much material can reasonably be covered in your session. We suggest that your session timing account for circumstances such as extra time needed for setup, introductions, reflection, questions, and discussion.
Is AV/projector/tech available in the parallel sessions?
Projectors and screens will only be available in half of the conference breakout rooms, however all rooms will be equipped with microphones and PA’s. Alternatives to fully PowerPoint-dependent presentations are encouraged. If you intend to bring your presentation on a laptop or USB thumb drive, etc., please indicate that you require a digital projector, and be prepared to bring adapters to connect to UMass equipment. Other requests could include a TV, DVD/VCR, CD player, etc.
This will greatly help us as we schedule the parallel sessions and arrange for equipment availability at Umass. If A/V needs are not specified on this form, we may not be able to accommodate a later request.
What else is in the rooms? How can I set up my room?
The rooms contain a mix of chairs, tables, and freestanding individual desks, a podium with a microphone, and chalkboards/whiteboards. You can rearrange the seating as you prefer, but please return the room to its original configuration at the end of your session. You should bring any additional session materials you require, such as pens, scrap paper, markers, etc., as these will not be provided in the rooms.
What is the poster session like? Is tech/AV available?
Poster sessions occur simultaneously in a large, shared space. Though tech/AV are not available for poster sessions, past poster presenters have included small, brief interactive elements and handouts in addition to dialogue with attendees to create an engaging experience.
60-Minute Presentation Sessions are intended for presenters who wish to share research and methodologies. We encourage presenters to include time for questions and discussion. Audio-visual equipment, including digital projector and screen, may be requested.
75-Minute Practice Workshops demonstrate contemplative approaches and invite participants to experience them as they have been designed or adapted for educational settings, while allowing time for discussion. We encourage a full variety of practices from stillness to movement, silence to sound, interpersonal to intrapersonal, etc.; performances; and other forms of interactive and experiential learning. Audio-visual equipment, including digital projector and screen, may be requested.
75-Minute Roundtable Sessions, moderated and organized by a lead presenter/facilitator, can propose a concept, approach, or issue. Participants are invited to share in an open inquiry. Facilitators should be able to skillfully support these energetic and deep discussions. Audio-visual equipment, including digital projector and screen, may be requested.
Poster Presentations offer an opportunity to speak collaboratively with a large number of colleagues and display some aspects of your work visually on a poster. We envision this poster session as a dynamic gathering, leading to synthesis of ideas from across the diverse group of participants. Each poster presenter will be supplied with a 3′x4′ poster board and adhesive materials. Posters are presented simultaneously in a one-hour session. No audio-visual equipment is available for Poster Presentations.