Call for Proposals

National Association for Media Literacy Education
2021 Conference Call for Proposals

Thank you for your interest in submitting a proposal for the 2021 Conference! The Call for Proposals is now closed.

We have received an amazing number of responses this year and our review process is still ongoing. We expect to notify all applicants by the end of April. If you have questions about your submission, please contact us at

Location: Virtual
Dates: July 16 – 18, 2021
Theme: “Media Literacy and Social Justice”
Submission Deadline: March 14, 2021 11:59pm PST

About NAMLE 2021

At the 2019 NAMLE conference in Washington DC, one of our most popular sessions was the plenary discussion centered around media literacy, social justice, and equity. Fast forward, and the year 2020 put social justice and racial equity at the forefront of most of our public discourse. This was due to the continuing contentious national political landscape, the inhumane treatment of immigrants, amplification of educational and digital inequities, the growing environmental crisis, and the senseless murders of Black people. The ensuing uprising brought millions to the streets in support of the Black Lives Matter movement to demand the defunding of the police in order to establish racial justice and reimagine public safety. In addition to all of this, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the aforementioned inequities as it continues to disproportionately affect our most marginalized communities. 

The new year has yet to demonstrate marked changes; in fact, many of us watched on January 6th in horror as an angry mob of Trump supporters, many who believe conspiracy theories related to the 2020 election, sought to overturn the results in a violent coup attempt. For each of these circumstances, the media has played a significant role, whether as enabler, informer, exposer, or organizer. As a result, there have been renewed calls for teaching media literacy education to ensure that we can overcome the disinformation blitz.

Media literacy has many connections with social justice; in fact, many would say that media literacy is social justice. Specifically, media literacy helps us to understand the relationships between media, information, and power; this is often referred to as critical media literacy. The process of developing media literacy skills helps us to decipher what a piece of media wants you to believe and why, who benefits from you believing it, whose perspectives are valued in mainstream media, whose perspectives are marginalized or missing, and how we might elevate them. It helps us to unpack stereotypes and circulate ideas about various groups. Media literacy promotes inquiry into the effects that propaganda and mis/dis-information have on our politics and how they perpetuate injustices against marginalized groups, the environment, and our sociopolitical climate. In sum, media literacy helps us to understand issues of systemic inequity and who benefits from their maintenance, while also inspiring action, critical change, and the democratization of media industries.
Given all of these connections, NAMLE finds it extremely salient to organize a conference around the topic of Media Literacy + Social Justice.


Proposal submissions include individual and panel presentations, lectures, classroom demonstrations, and poster sessions. We encourage educators, media professionals, students, activists, and scholars from any field who are interested in furthering media literacy education to submit a proposal. Proposals will be given special consideration if they (1) articulate concrete connections to social justice, and (2) offer a fresh point of view of an issue within the field of media literacy education. 

Presenters can select from the following session types (session formats on next page):


Panels are 40-minute sessions in which two to three panelists speak, leaving at least 15 minutes for audience questions and responses. Panel sessions require a moderator to facilitate the session. All panel submissions must consider participant diversity in ethnicity, gender, and perspectives.  Session format: Live

Proposals by one or two individuals consisting of a 20-minute presentation with 10 minutes of discussion. Session format: Live or Semi-Live

TED-style Talk
TED-style talk on a research or policy element of Media Literacy Education. Session format: Pre-Recorded


Classroom Demo
Educators will demonstrate teaching a media literacy lesson. Presenters will be responsible for obtaining appropriate permission from their institution. Session format: Pre-Recorded

Unit or Lesson Plan Poster
Presentation consisting of a 20-minute presentation with 10 minutes of discussion. Session format: Live or Semi-Live


Production sessions will showcase academic, professional, and creative work that addresses issues of media literacy + social justice in more multimodal formats. Formats might include: short films, podcasts, video, photography, textiles, etc. We encourage academics who use multimodal methods, community organizations, and independent media-makers to submit their work. Session format: Any


✓ Designated time slot on conference schedule
✓ Live video presentation
✓ Live video Q&A with presenter
✓ Attendee chat available
✓ Attendee polling available

✓ Designated time slot on conference schedule
✓ Pre-recorded video presentation
✓ Live chat with presenter while recording is aired
✓ Audience polling available
✘ No live video Q&A with presenter

✓ Designated time slot on conference schedule
✓ Pre-recorded video presentation
✓ Attendee chat available
No live video Q&A with presenter
No audience polling

On Demand
✓ Pre-recorded video presentation played on demand by attendees
No designated time slot on conference schedule
No live video Q&A with presenter
No live audience chat with presenter
No audience polling


Submission link:
Deadline: March 14, 2021 11:59pm PST. 

Before You Submit Your Proposal… 

Please make note of the following before completing your proposal submission online: 

🔸  We will be collecting all information about your presenters/authors and session with your proposal submission. Please ensure the biographical information and images submitted for all presenters/authors and session information is complete as the information provided will be used in the conference program should it be accepted.  

🔸  To avoid losing your work, we highly recommend composing your proposal in a document and then cutting/pasting into the online application. 

Information you will need for your proposal submission:

  • Biographical information for ALL Presenters/Authors:
    • First/Last Name
    • Name as you would like it to appear in the program
    • Affiliation
    • Title/Role
    • Email address
    • Profile picture
    • Short biography (100 words)
  • Session information
    • Session type
    • Title (20 words)
    • Abstract/Description (250 words)
    • Presentation Outline (200 words)
    • Learning outcomes/Objectives (100 words)
    • How your presentation connects to social justice (200 words)
    • Target audience(s)
    • Resources to share (up to 5) 
    • For research proposals:
      • Methods (100 words)
      • Findings (100 words)  


Research, Theory and Policy presentations will undergo a blind peer review and non-research submissions will undergo a review by the Conference Committee. All applicants will be notified if their proposal was accepted or rejected by April 15 following the review process.


Presenters must accept or reject the invitation to present at the Conference within two weeks of notification of acceptance. Presenters who do not accept their invitation within two weeks will be removed from the program. Once a presenter has accepted the invitation to present, they are responsible for registering and submitting the registration fee. Registration information, including fees, will be available on the NAMLE conference website at that time.

Questions about submitting a proposal? Contact us at