Thursday, July 12, 2012

Changes in Programming for the Annual Meeting in Seattle, 2013

AMPC recently released an FAQ detailing changes to conference planning for the Annual Meeting in Seattle, 2013. I've excerpted a few points here, their language in italics.

  • AMPC intends to solicit ideas for the topics most relevant to the membership, and then build the programs around those ideas. 

    AALL will be conducting member surveys before, during, and immediately after the Annual Meeting, using a variety of venues and mediums, to identify the major issues and challenges facing members. Annual Meeting attendees will have opportunities to suggest topics throughout the meeting venue. The Call for Proposals from the AMPC will include a summary of these member-identified issues so SISs (and other AALL entities and individual members) understand members’ educational needs early in the process. These topics will help all proposers to develop and align conference content with these member-identified education needs. During the evaluation process, the AMPC will identify and accept programs that best address these strategic issues.

    For this reason, it will be very important for everyone to fill out the survey, which should be available from 7/16 to 8/10.
  • Blind review. No sessions reserved for SIS's chosen program: The AMPC will employ a blind review process in which AMPC members will review the proposals based on their content - program title, description, and learning objectives. The program sponsor will no longer be part of the proposal review process and there will be no ranking of proposals by AALL entities. All proposals will be reviewed blind -- i.e., stripped of the names of the proposers, or the SIS proposing them. Each SIS will no longer have a slot reserved for their one most highly ranked program.
  • Call for Proposals deadline extended to October 15: The Call for Proposals, built around member-identified issues, will be announced after the Annual Meeting. (The Call for Proposals will be announced via AALLNET, the Members’ Open Forum on AALLNET, and the SIS Council Forum. Stay tuned.) The deadline for proposing programs will be October 15.No one has yet seen what the proposal forms will look like.
  • One independent SIS program per conference, cost to be picked up by SIS: The AMPC will schedule all programs to ensure a balanced variety of programming in every time slot. SISs will no longer select the date/time for their independently-produced programs. The AMPC will also limit the total number of concurrent programs to no more than 8 – including both AALL-sponsored and SIS sponsored. This will allow each SIS to have one independently-produced program at the Annual Meeting.
  • Alternative formats: Adjustments are being made to the 2013 conference schedule to better meet the educational and networking needs of attendees. Each day will allow for either alternative format educational opportunities or longer, more intensive educational programming.
  • Meeting times: Recent attendee survey comments report participants feel over-scheduled during the conference and that their energy for educational experiences is diminished. Please consider these factors and be sensitive to the busy schedules of your SIS’s members when planning additional meetings and events. . . .To address the foregoing concerns, the total number of meetings by a single SIS will be limited to no more than 10, excluding receptions, breakfasts, and lunches.
    As you know, groups are no longer allowed to schedule meetings concurrently against education programs. We have adjusted the schedule so at least two different meeting scheduling times remain available each day of the conference. We have added an additional slot of meeting time on Saturday from 1-3 p.m. for meetings. AALL committee meetings are held from 3-5 p.m. on Saturday and we have received positive feedback from this change. Meeting times are also available each day after education sessions are over.
  • More leadership training: Leadership Training for Committees, SISs, and Chapters will be revamped in 2013 from a procedural training to functional leadership training and will be held on Saturday morning. We are excited to bring a leadership facilitator to develop and prepare leaders for success during their year. Procedural training will occur in the early fall utilizing virtual training.

More about these changes was published in Spectrum, click here by Julie Pabarja, 2013 AMPS chair.

These are some pretty big changes. It is certainly great to have a bit more time to put together programs after the Annual Meeting. It will be important for TS and OBS members to fill out the survey and otherwise make our desires known (AMPS will have a table in the exhibit hall) regarding what kind of programing we'd like to have in Seattle. I think the challenge now is to figure out how we can productively fit our business into the new meeting model -- 10 SIS meetings total per conference may be a challenge! -- and how to use the new education programming model to ensure that we see the kind of programming we want in Seattle.


  1. Rhonda Lawrence3:12 PM

    What can I say? We have fought the battle for so many years ... now back to square one. Don't know how we can conduct business unless each standing committee within TS-SIS forms its own special interest section, as Melody Lembke suggests. But bet we won't be allowed to do that.

    Really really tired of this.

  2. The thing that I find curious is that so many of the SIS responses to the VCC report stressed how important SIS meetings are -- for the information that we share at them, the collaborative work that we do at them (Form/Genre, for instance) but also the fact that they are the easy entry points for new members to become leaders. They are the way the amorphous organization becomes a place where you find a place and get to know people. I don't know -- I can't explain it, either, and it does seem to me that we have fought this battle once before.

    1. Chris, I and other long-time TS-SISers have fought this battle so many times I have lost track.

      Other members will have to carry on if they want to protest. Been there, done that.

    2. Well actually, Rhonda, I am one of those long-time people, too, by this point. And yes, I know what you mean.