Research: Submit a Pre-organized Session
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Develop Your Proposal for a Pre-Organized Session

These instructions assume you are the Organizer. ACSP staff and track chairs will come to rely on you when finalizing the details of the pre-organized session. ACSP staff will work with the Organizer when something goes awry with the session. The submission system will ask you to indicate you are the Organizer.

  • Determine a theme of your session. Invite and confirm participating authors via your personal email. There must be a minimum of three paper presentations (maximum of five) to be considered a successful session proposal.
  • Invite a discussant for your session unless you wish conference organizers do this on your behalf. This individual is a suggestion from you for this session. Unfortunately, pre-organized sessions will not be scheduled around the discussant’s other conflicts and conference organizers will ask you to invite another discussant if a schedule conflict appears.
  • Have a session title, a track choice and an alternate choice, a summary of the session prepared.
  • Have on hand the name, affiliation and email address of one person responsible for each paper in your session.


Submit the Session Proposal Before Any Paper Abstracts

The Organizer must submit the session proposal first. There is no cost ($0) to submit a session proposal. We recommend you get to the submission site early in the season, and before the other participants in your group.

  • Login to your account using your ACSP credentials. If you don't remember your ACSP username and password, contact
  • At the submission site, in the dark gray bar near the top of the site, select "Pre-Organized Session Proposal Home".
  • On the next page, select Add a New Pre-organized Session Proposal.
  • Enter the required information as prompted by the system.
  • Adding Authors - Follow instructions to add one individual responsible for submitting each paper to be a part of your session. Make sure to include yourself as an author if you will be presenting your own paper in the session, however it is not required that you present a paper in this session.
  • Upon completion of the proposal submission, the system will email each individual a link and instructions for them to submit their own abstracts which will then be tied to the session for review - but ONLY if they use the link in the email. If they do not use this link, their paper will not be tied to your session.
  • You can log-out at any step of the process. The session proposal will remain in draft until you return to the system to complete the submission. Authors will not be emailed until you complete the submission.

We can't stress enough to follow up with authors before the final submission deadline to make sure they submitted their paper. It's disappointing for all involved when a session collapses because one person failed to make the submission deadline.

We recommend after you complete your session proposal in the system, send an email to the participating authors:

  • Let them know they will receive an email inviting them to submit their abstract to the session. They will need to be prepared to submit their own abstract before the abstract submission deadline.
  • Make sure everyone knows the correct track – if they submit to a different track, their abstract wlll not be included in the session.
  • Include a notation that each author will be required to pay their own $25 abstract submission fee.
  • Remind participating authors that presenting in a pre-organized session is the one paper presentation allowed by conference policy. Authors should not expect to be able to present a paper in another session.
  • Let them know that submitting to a pre-organized session is not a guarantee the abstract will be accepted for presentation.


Submitting Abstracts for the Papers within the Session

Each individual listed by the Organizer will receive an email from the ACSP abstract management system that invites them to submit their own abstract.

  • Participating presenters should be aware that presenting in a pre-organized session is the one paper presentation allowed by conference policy. Authors should not expect to be able to present a paper in another session.
  • Log-in to your account using your ACSP credentials.
  • Make sure to know which track is the correct one for your abstract. Your submission will not be tied to the session if you select the wrong track. Ask your Organizer.
  • Log out at any step of the process. The abstract will remain in draft until you return to the system to complete the submission.
  • All abstract submissions require the $25 submission fee required at the end of the process.
  • Note! Once you submit payment, you can no longer edit your abstract.
  • Each submission will be individually reviewed, accepted or rejected. There is no leniency because the paper is part of a pre-organized session.
  • If something goes wrong with your submission. Contact for assistance.


Rejected Abstracts from Your Session

If a pre-organized session has a paper or two rejected, leaving the session with two papers or less, the pre-organized session will "collapse". Any accepted papers within the session may be merged with the other papers for a different session.


Session Scheduling

A pre-organized session with 3 papers will be scheduled in a 60 minute time slot; a 4 paper session in a 75 minute time slot; and a 5 paper session will be scheduled in a 90 minute time slot.

Being a pre-organized session does not preclude track chairs from adding papers to your session. If it only has 3 papers, expect track chairs might request the addition of another paper to the session. Track chairs have read all the tracks submissions and have an overview that enables them to suggest the best options for the conference.


Multiple Program Placement Policy

Multiple abstract submissions on behalf of one author will be reviewed and may possibly be accepted. However, this policy is strictly enforced, and authors will be contacted in advance of creating the conference schedule.

These placements not interchangeable. If you have more than one submitted paper abstract accepted and are invited to participate on more than one accepted roundtable, in fairness to everyone, we will ask you to limit your participation.

Participants on the final program will be limited to:

  • one presentation of a paper - whether in a paper session, or involved in a pre-organized paper session;
  • one placement on a roundtable;
  • one or two placements as a discussant of a paper session; and
  • one presentation of a poster.



Program questions should be addressed to: Gerardo Sandoval, ACSP National Conference Committee Chair,

Abstract submission procedure and payment questions should be addressed to:


The Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning promotes education, research, service and outreach in the United States and throughout the world by seeking to:

  • recognize diverse needs and interests in planning;
  • improve and enhance the accreditation process, and;
  • strengthen the role of planning education in colleges and universities through publications, conferences, and community engagement;
  • extend planning beyond the classroom into the world of practice.


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