How to Submit a LITA Program Proposal for ALA Annual Conference

Location: Chicago, IL, June 25-30, 2020
Deadline: September 10, 2019
Acceptances will be sent out in mid-December 2019

We encourage the submission of innovative and creative proposals for the 2020 Annual American Library Association Conference. We’re looking for 60-minute presentations that focus on the current or future use of technology in libraries. We strongly encourage presenters from underrepresented groups to submit proposals.

Go to the Submission Form

Completing the Submission Form

Please complete the form as accurately as possible because your answers will be used to score your proposal.

Start by selecting “Begin a New Submission” and make sure you select Library and Information Technology Association (LITA) as your Submission Unit.

For each page, you are required to click either a Save or Continue button in order to successfully move to the next steps. The submission form contains 7 areas that you must complete in order to finalize your proposal.

  1. Description
    • You must choose a Topic or create an “other.”
    • Descriptions should be less than 150 words for the online version and under 100 words for the program book version.
  2. Proposal Subject and Audience Information
    • These will include choosing subject headings, defining your target audience, and indicating interest to different types of libraries.
  3. Learning Objectives
    • The form requires 2-3 learning objectives for your program.
  4. Program Details
    • Is this a panel presentation?
    • Briefly describe how the program will align with one or more of ALA’s strategic directions. We place a high value on programs that support increased equity, diversity, and inclusion.
    • List any collaborators, including LITA Interest Groups, Committees, or other ALA or non-ALA organizations (e.g., ALCTS, ALA Sustainability Round Table, ACLU, EFF, etc.), as well as other conferences at which the material has been presented.
  5. Program Room Setup Requirements
    • Explains the AV and room setup provided and asks you to estimate audience size.
  6.  Contact
    • This is a 2-part process to enter your speakers and moderators. First enter the name and email address for each person; then open the person’s information to enter their position and affiliation.
    • This information is important because it allows ALA to contact your speakers for recording releases and allows them to upload their slides, profile photos, and bios.
  7. Acknowledge
    • You must provide a virtual signature in order to submit your proposal.

After you save each section, save the whole entry in order to complete the process. On your dashboard, a successful submission will have a Green Checkmark Dot.

Preconference Proposals

In addition to program session proposals, we also encourage submissions for half-day or full-day preconferences to help participants develop skills through interactive learning. Proposals for Annual 2020 preconferences use a different form but go through the same type of review and selection process.

Submit a LITA Preconference Proposal for ALA Annual 2020 (coming soon)

Call for Proposals FAQ

What kinds of topics should I consider?
We’re looking for programs that inspire technological change and adoption in all types of libraries, especially those that go above and beyond the everyday use of technology. We strongly encourage presenters from underrepresented groups to submit proposals.

We regularly receive more proposals than we can program into the 20 slots available to LITA at the ALA Annual Conference. The 2019 ALA Annual conference scheduler shows some of the great LITA programs from this past year.

What makes a proposal successful?
The most successful programs are those that focus on a particular topic and provide actionable information attendees can take back to their institution for discussion or implementation. Whether the topic is a theoretical idea or hardcore code, our goal is to provide them with specific learning outcomes, so be explicit about what people will get from your presentation as opposed to another one in the same time slot that interests them.

Keep in mind that we place a higher value on programs that support increased equity, diversity, and inclusion.

We also take into account any elements you include that go beyond just lecture. Attendees have either paid to attend the conference themselves or they’ve convinced their institution to fund the expense, so they want to learn something they couldn’t have in a webinar back home.

When will I know if my proposal was accepted?
We will send notices for all proposals, whether accepted or declined in mid-December 2019.

Do I have to be a member of LITA, a LITA interest group (IG), or a committee to submit a proposal?
No, we welcome proposals from anyone who feels they have something to offer regarding library technology. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide financial support for speakers. Because of the limited number of program slots, LITA IGs and committees will receive preference where two equally well-written programs are submitted. Presenters may be asked to combine programs or work with an IG/committee when similar topics have been proposed.

Have another question?
Please email LITA staff at or contact us.