Session Formats and Subject Areas

Session Formats

Registrants at PAMLA can present one traditional panel paper at the conference, and chair one session, or, if they are not presenting a paper, chair two sessions. In addition to delivering one paper as part of a traditional panel, registrants may also present once on a Roundtable, as part of a Workshop (there are no limits on how many Workshops a person may register to take), or as part of a Creative Conversation or Special Event.

Please propose your abstracts to only one traditional paper panel. You may propose different abstracts to different sessions, but you may only present one paper in one traditional paper panel at the conference. So, if you have abstracts accepted to multiple panels, please quickly let the presiding officers know which one you choose to participate on.

Please do not propose abstracts to more than three sessions.

If you are invited to join more than one Roundtable, Workshop, Creative Conversation, or Special Event, you must choose which one you care to join.

Possible Session Formats are as follows:

  • Panel — Three to four participants, with each panelist delivering a formal paper (2,300-3,000 words) or presentation of 15-20 minutes as set by the presiding officer, followed by Q&A and discussion.
  • Roundtable — Six to ten participants give brief, informal presentations (5-10 minutes) and then the session is open to conversation and debate between participants and the audience.
  • Workshop – Workshops model hands-on learning with discussions led by a moderator or chair. They emphasize participation by all session goers and often focus on the development of professional skills, interests, responsibilities, and proficiencies.
  • Creative Conversation – A conversation with one or two writers, directors, museum curators, historians, musicians, or other creators with one to three scholars as mediators between the artist and the session audience.
  • Special Event – An event with one to ten speakers that can involve anything from a film showing and discussion with the filmmakers, to an architectural walking tour, to a museum tour, to a creative writing event/reading, to architects or urban designers discussing their praxis.

Subject Areas

PAMLA sessions are categorized by a primary subject area, and often by an optional secondary area. When proposing a special session, the proposer must choose a primary area and may also choose a secondary area, so that when the CFP page is up, interested proposers can better find their session. Possible Subject Areas are as follows:

  • American
  • Asian
  • British and Anglophone
  • Ancient and Classics
  • Cultural, Historical, and Political Studies
  • Film and Media Studies
  • French and Francophone
  • Genres and Audiences
  • German
  • Italian
  • Multiethnic and Indigenous
  • Professional and Pedagogy
  • Rhetoric, Composition, and Linguistics
  • Spanish and Portuguese
  • Theory, Aesthetics, and Science
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • World Literatures and Comparative Studies
  • Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing

These subject areas are a means of organizing and grouping our sessions to help conference attendees to find a session in areas they are interested in. For a list of all of our general/standing sessions, go here: