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SEPTEMBER 24-­26, 2013


Invitation to Present

The University of Georgia is hosting an America Educational Research Association (AERA) research conference that aims to establish a framework for guiding the implementation and presentation of design-­‐based research (DBR). We invite you to submit a proposal to this conference. The goal of the conference is to bring together perspectives on design research from multiple fields, including but not limited to Instructional Design and Technology and the Learning Sciences.

(Note: Please RSVP your intention to attend or not attend using the form provided in the email and on the Invitation Letter sent with this Call for Proposals.)

Crossroads Model

The conference will be unique in that it adopts the Crossroads model ( developed by John Settlage and Adam Johnston. Aligning with the conference goal, the purpose of the Crossroads model is to generate intense conversation around relevant educational issues. In our case, we seek to bring diverse perspectives together to meet “at the Crossroads” and improve the manner in which we connect our design work with our research efforts.

This model promotes a conference experience unlike more traditional venues such as AERA, AECT, NARST, etc. This is not said as a slight to those important forums – rather as a point of clarification. You will not stand and present completed and polished statistical/qualitative analyses and results for others to scrutinize. You will not be asked to sit passively and absorb the knowledge of others. Instead, you will pose challenging questions that you struggle with in your design and research efforts. These will spur conversation, ideas, and solutions from others who hold interests similar to your own. The work will be collaborative, collegial, and organic.

The major format for sessions will be the Incubator forum. In each Incubator, you will present your work in the context of those bigger challenges that you have faced as part of your design and research. The audience will play an active role in exploring the challenges, helping shape these challenges, and ultimately in offering potential ideas and solutions to each challenge. The goal is not to pass knowledge down but rather for knowledge to grow within and across participants by sharing our most vexing thoughts and our emerging ventures with peers.

Your Proposal

The conference will focus on several major themes associated with DBR. Please indicate which theme your paper best fits. If you have an idea for a theme that is not listed, you may list that as your theme (clearly label it as a proposed theme).

• Maintaining quality and rigor in DBR
• Innovative approaches to DBR methods and analysis
• Validating instructional theory and principles through design experiments
• Tools for effective learning and/or performance
• Disseminating DBR through publication and other outlets

Your presentation will take place in an Incubator Forum (see Crossroads model above). Within each Incubator, you will present your work in terms of a vexation and a venture. We ask that your proposal will take a similar form. Each proposal should include the following three components:

1. Vexation. Here, you describe something that ‘vexes’ you about your work as an educational designer. This is not meant to be a forum for venting – rather, we seek a description of your frustration/challenge/big question that details why it is so troublesome or problematic. Be sure to ground your description in a brief summary of the project (or projects if this is a recurring issue for you) from which the vexation emanates. This is just a summary at this point – you will have an opportunity to expand upon your vexation in your full paper (see Full Paper below).

2. Venture. Describe a course of action that you might initiate to address, resolve or diminish your vexation. You may not have attempted your venture yet – that’s ok, and even desirable. The conference can serve as an opportunity to share it for feedback from others or gain insight into other possible ventures that may be even better ways to address your vexation.
The goal is not to have answers, but to generate rich and meaningful questions that your peers will enjoy discussing and ‘incubating’ with.

3. Visuals. This is not about generating screen­-shots of your project or instructional program – those will become part of the Full Paper. An ideal visual would be a hand-drawn illustration (yes, even on a coffee-shop napkin) that translates your thoughts into a visual of some sort. When combined with your Vexation and Venture, it brings clarity and richness to your thinking. This will be included in the proceedings, so a black-­‐and white visual no larger than 3x5 is preferred.

Proposals will be peer-­‐reviewed (not blind). The purpose of the review is a) to make sure your proposed session promotes the conference goals and b) to provide you with formative feedback on your proposal. Although your proposal is not guaranteed to be accepted, it is unlikely that your proposal will be rejected at this point (we are, after all, inviting you – we want you to come, so our goal is to work with you on shaping your proposal to advance our interests in DBR).

Proposal Submission

Your proposal should be no more than 1500 words in length, all-­‐inclusive (e.g. references, tables, appendices, etc). Use the headings noted above (Vexation, Venture, Visual) and submit a single document in which you plainly describe your ideas in this organizational format. Include a title page that contains presenter information and the theme that your proposal falls under (title page will not count towards your word limit).

Your proposal submission should be made electronically as a Word or PDF document to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. on (or before) the April 15, 2013 at 11:59pm deadline.

Effective Proposals

While the quality of your work is important, the goal of this conference and the Crossroads model is to push the boundaries of our thinking about DBR. Thus, effective proposals will show the potential to stir our thinking about research in the context of educational design. They will entice discussion and participation from others. They will present issues that have the potential to be shared among other design researchers. The tone will invite others to engage with your vexation and productively participate in Incubator forums.


You are expected to submit the final version of your full paper no later than Monday, October 26, 2013 at 11:59pm.

(Yep, you read that right - the full paper will not be submitted until one month after the conference. This gives authors an opportunity to ‘incubate’ on their conference sessions and incorporate their conference experience into the full paper. We will reward early submitters to encourage follow-­‐through.)
Full Paper

The full paper should take the same format as your proposal – that is, it should contain the Vexation, Venture, and Visual contained in the proposal. The full paper will add to the proposal in two substantial ways:

1. The Venture for the full paper should incorporate the main ‘take-­‐away’ points from your Incubator session. Please note that you will not be solely responsible for taking account of the Incubator session activities. Each presenter will receive assistance in generating a written account of these
take-­‐away points. Scribes (that is, volunteer grad students) will be present at
each session to help you keep record of the main ideas within your Incubator session and your own reflections on the session.

2. The full paper should also add a section that is devoted to articulating a complete description of the Project Context. While this context was summarized briefly in the vexation portion of the proposal, the full paper should devote an entire section to articulating a complete project description. In this section, you may also wish to summarize any prior research findings that are associated with the project in it’s current form. If you have multiple iterations of a project, choose to summarize those that are most pertinent to your vexation and venture (e.g. if your vexation stems from problems you have encountered when scaling up projects in DBR, your context might include brief summary of findings across multiple iterations). The Project Context will likely lead into or directly follow your Vexation.

The full paper should be no more than 30 double-­‐spaced pages, including references, tables, figures, etc.

(NOTE: Many thanks to John Settlage and Adam Johnston for making their Crossroads materials publicly available. These materials were used extensively in generating this call for proposals.)

Test update

Just a test to see how the blog works.

Call for Proposals Open

The call for proposals have been sent. Please respond to our online form by March 22 to indicate your intention to attend or not attend.