Developing a Great Proposal

How Far Can Your Idea Go?

Education at AALL’s Annual Meeting & Conference is suggested, developed, and delivered by AALL members. Here are some recommendations for turning your great idea into a great proposal.

  • Set realistic goals and fully develop your proposal.
  • Think about solutions to workplace challenges, and practical tools and ideas that attendees can apply once they’re back to work. Explore the “must-have” program topics for next year; these topics support various competencies and skills comprising AALL’s Body of Knowledge (BoK) domains. Also consider the hot topics buzzing around your SIS or chapter.
  • Go beyond the “sage on a stage.” Think creatively about format, especially about ways to encourage attendees to work together to share experiences, brainstorm, or solve a problem.
  • Be clear and concise with your takeaways and description. Keep in mind that your most critical reader may be an administrator in a law firm, law school, or court, trying to decide whether or not to let your potential audience member attend. Please try to keep your description to fewer than 100 words.
  • The standard program length is one hour, so think about the best way to deliver the content of your program in that time frame. (There is also the option to propose longer-length deep dive programs [2.5 hours] and preconference workshops, which can range from half a day up to two days in length.)
  • Identify speakers who are the best individuals to present and/or lead discussions on the issue. If your subject matter expert is not necessarily a dynamic presenter, pair them with an energetic moderator who can keep the session moving. We are committed to elevating new and diverse voices in our profession—consider working with speakers who have the desired experience/education but who may not have presented at Annual Meeting in the past.
  • Carefully consider the number of speakers you want on the program or workshop. Having more than three speakers on a one-hour program is strongly discouraged.
  • Ask your AMPC liaison for guidance if you need it.
  • Plan ahead; give yourself plenty of time to make revisions and corrections. The AMPC will evaluate all submitted proposals using a comprehensive rubric focusing on: 1) the relevance of the topic (Is it important, timely, and vital to legal information professionals? Will the learner be able to implement some action or think in new ways as a result?); and 2) its description (Is it clear and well-defined? Is there a specific plan for learner engagement? Are the proposed speakers suitable?).
  • Review and revise your proposal—be a careful editor—and share it with colleagues.
  • Submit your proposal by the deadline.