Call for Participation

ACRL 2021 is going virtual!

ACRL invites you to share your research and creative endeavors with your colleagues at the ACRL 2021 Virtual Conference.

Today’s higher education environment calls for innovative ways to support student, faculty, and institution success. Submit your ideas for presentation at the ACRL 2021 Virtual Conference, where we will explore the theme Ascending into An Open Future.

Through the work of talented library workers like you, and ACRL’s commitments to equitable and open scholarship as well as equity, diversity and inclusion, today’s academic and research libraries are providing more open and inclusive collections and services. Share your ideas with your colleagues as we work together for an open future. Find colleagues and join the conversation on #acrl2021.

ACRL 2021 Virtual Conference Deadline Extension

The deadline for Lightning Talk, Poster Session, Roundtable Discussion, TechConnect, and Virtual Conference Webcast submissions has been extended to Monday, November 9 (11:59 p.m. PST). As a reminder of the new Participation Limits, all submitters (even those that already submitted in the spring) are eligible to be included as a presenter or co-presenter on a maximum of two additional proposals for the revised fall submission deadline, and can ultimately present a maximum of two times during the ACRL 2021 Virtual Conference.​

Contributed paper, panel session, preconference, and workshop notifications are expected to go out by end of December 2020. We apologize for the delay and thank you in advance for your patience.

Lightning talk, poster session, roundtable discussion, TechConnect, and Virtual Conference webcast notifications are expected to be issued by February 2021.

We look forward to applying your ideas, creativity, and enthusiasm during the virtual-only ACRL 2021 Conference!


May 22, 2020
Contributed Paper, Panel, Preconference, Workshop

November 9, 2020
Lightning Talk, Poster, Roundtable, TechConnect, Webcast

Share your expertise

  • ACRL 2021 offers a variety of options for participation and features nine session formats to suit a wide range of presentation and learning styles. From first-time presenters to seasoned experts, there is surely a format best suited to your ideas.
  • Consult the conference tags to stimulate your thinking and position your proposal within the conference theme. The tags will serve to create our own conference map and guide attendees to themes of interest and inspiration.
  • Review the proposal elements so you know what information to prepare for your proposal.

Participation Limits

In order to allow as many individuals as possible to participate as conference presenters, an individual may submit, or be included as a co-presenter on a maximum of two proposals for the spring submission deadline (May 22, 2020) and a maximum of two proposals for the fall submission deadline (November 9, 2020).

This means a potential for a maximum of four total acceptances. However, an individual can present/be listed as a presenter a maximum of two times during the ACRL Conference. While it is uncommon for an individual to have up to four proposals accepted, in the case that happens, the individual would need to confirm with ACRL which two programs they plan to present in order to comply with the two-presentation limit.

Equity Statement

ACRL strives to develop an inclusive conference program that will reflect the library community’s diverse range of race, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, economic background, age, and/or ability. We also seek presenters and topics from all types of libraries, positions, and experiences, including nonlibrary faculty, staff, and administrators. Individuals are encouraged to address how their proposed sessions and their personal and professional experiences will advance these goals and will promote equity and inclusion.


ACRL 2021 presenters will be required to:

  • register for and attend the conference (complimentary registration may be requested for non-librarian presenters)
  • grant permission for recording and broadcast of their presentation;
  • participate in online speaker training;
  • assign ACRL first publication rights, as contributed papers will be published as part of the ACRL conference proceedings; and
  • contributed paper presenters may submit an optional completed papers in both hard copy and electronic versions by the paper submission deadline date (spring 2021 TBD).


Selection Criteria

The ACRL 2021 Conference committees will evaluate the content of your proposal for relevance to the conference tracks and theme, clarity, originality, and timeliness. Proposals should be for original work that has not been previously published. Special attention will be given to proposals that:

  • demonstrate innovative thinking;
  • generate ideas or report research that contribute to ongoing discussion about the future of academic and research libraries;
  • contribute ideas for positioning academic and research librarians to be leaders both on and off campus;
  • present strategies for effectively implementing new ideas and technology; and
  • encourage active learning among conference attendees