Imagine the Possibilities

Submitting a Proposal

The Public Library Association is already counting down to the PLA 2018 Conference. One of the most rewarding aspects of PLA Conference is the array of educational programming that comes from our members, other public library professionals, and experts outside the field. PLA 2018 will challenge its attendees to Imagine the Possibilities—both at conference and back in their libraries and communities. Want to be a part of this inspiring event? Submit a proposal and share your idea for a preconference or program. The deadline for submitting proposals is April 14, 2017 at 11:59 PM Eastern.

Session Formats

PLA 2018 will feature two session formats—preconferences and programs.

Preconferences are in-depth educational sessions for 50–100 attendees. They can be a half-day or full-day in length. Preconferences typically require an additional registration fee for attendees.

Programs are 60-minute sessions that can feature a single speaker or a panel of speakers, or can be a guided audience discussion or activity. Attendance can vary from 50 to 500 people.

Building Your Proposal

You’ll be asked to provide the following information about your proposed session:

  1. Organizer and speaker(s) information
  2. Session format
  3. Title and description
  4. Learning outcomes for attendees
  5. Knowledge level of audience
  6. Level of audience interaction
  7. Program track, primary topic, and session tags

Preview the proposal form (with instructions) and check out our recommendations for developing a great proposal.

Ready to start your proposal? Click here for the online proposal form.

Speaking at PLA 2018

PLA is exploring how to make our conference more equitable, diverse, and inclusive. Our first step includes seeking and strongly encouraging submissions from marginalized groups including women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, and people with disabilities. PLA may be able to provide support in completing the proposal form and/or mentoring for first-time presenters.

PLA 2018 speakers will be expected to:

1. Register for and attend the conference;
2. Respond to PLA requests for information in a timely manner; and
3. Submit session handouts electronically prior to conference.

See also: Speaker Honoraria and Expense Reimbursement Policies; and Policy on Vendor Participation in PLA-sponsored Programs.

Questions? Contact Angela Maycock, PLA Manager of Continuing Education, at


Go to Proposal Preview/Instructions »

Go to Developing a Great Proposal »