Call for Proposals

Thank you for your interest in presenting at Innovations 2016.

The submission deadline has passed; we are no longer accepting proposals. 
Please contact Lee Anna Elmore for additional information.

Innovations in the community college can be thought of as streams that flow through the larger body of work educators and students engage in each day. The Innovations conference incorporates ideas, initiatives, and inspirations from five vital streams into the broader conference goal of encouraging and facilitating student and organizational learning through innovation, experimentation, and institutional transformation. The conference features Special Sessions, Forums, Roundtable Discussions, and Poster Sessions for each Innovations stream, along with general session keynotes and Master Seminars aimed at inspiring innovation and change in community college education.

Join the most energetic professionals in community colleges as they come together to showcase their model programs, share lessons learned, and look to the future by exploring Innovations in (1) learning and teaching; (2) leadership and organization; (3) workforce preparation and development; (4) student success; and (5) basic skills and developmental education.

Learning and Teaching

Community college professionals continue to develop new and innovative ways of approaching learning and teaching, many of which promote the learning-centered movement. This conference stream affords educators the opportunity to share their innovations with colleagues around the world. Classroom assessment and research, learning styles, learning communities, service learning, distance learning strategies, interactive computer-aided instruction, multimedia in the classroom, ethics in instruction, and critical-thinking skills development are only a few of the wide range of instructional strategies featured.

Leadership and Organization

Accountability mandates, fluctuating funding, demographic shifts, and the rapid pace of change continue to challenge community college administrators to explore innovative strategies for leadership and organization. Learning organizations, knowledge management, quality principles, liberation management, and leading from the soul are only a few of the techniques used today to meet community college leadership challenges. In this stream, the League invites colleagues committed to transforming their community colleges to share their leadership, organizational, and staff development programs, processes, and perspectives in an effort to help all community college leaders learn how to blend diverse innovations together to make a difference in community college education.

Workforce Preparation and Development

The League for Innovation's Workforce Initiative explores the many ways community colleges are meeting the workforce needs of their communities. In a continuing effort to further this initiative, this stream highlights the individual and collaborative work of community colleges, K-12 institutions, businesses, and government agencies in contract training, continuing education, tech-prep programs, school-to-work initiatives, work-based learning activities, business and industry training, integrated academic and technical learning models, college and career transitions, and community college and industry partnerships. Some of these initiatives include the exploration of e-learning in workforce training, as well as the certification of workplace skills.

Student Success

The diverse needs and backgrounds of community college students have challenged student services personnel to develop and implement some of the most innovative approaches to serving students in higher education. Exciting methods for tackling the challenges of recruiting, admissions, advising, assessment, accessibility, orientation, early warning systems, learning support systems, enrollment management, retention services, and counseling are featured in this stream. This stream also presents a wide array of student activity and leadership programs.

Basic Skills and Developmental Education

The increasing needs of community college students demand that basic skills educators develop new and innovative ways to help underprepared students become successful members of a community of learners. This stream showcases a variety of organizational and instructional strategies to improve basic skills and developmental education programs in community colleges, including placement testing, assertive advising, peer tutoring, targeted mentoring, support groups, technology tools, faculty training, and outcomes assessment. Innovations in high school equivalency programs, adult high school, developmental education, and other basic skills programs are also featured in this stream.


Forums are traditional one-hour breakout sessions that form the core of conference offerings. Forums are intended for an audience of approximately 50-75 people, and a maximum of three speakers per Forum is recommended. Presenters are expected to use active learning techniques to engage audiences, to distribute materials, and to respond to follow-up requests for more information. Lecture-only presentations are strongly discouraged.

Sample Forum Descriptions

Dealing With Change: Creating Successful Project Teams 
Project teams learn about a five-phase model for creative problem solving, project creation, and implication, including assessment and refining. Participants discover ways to enhance individual and team performance.

Mathematics, Computation, and Modeling for the Life Sciences
Presenters discuss systems biology, bioinformatics, chance and stochastics in biological processes, models for describing biological events, and biological rhythms in the mathematics curriculum.

Roundtable Discussions

Roundtable Discussions afford a personal and interactive setting for exploration of key issues related to each conference stream. Roundtables are particularly well suited for exploratory topics and topics that require small group interchange. Roundtable presenters are expected to facilitate substantive discussions or small group activities and to distribute handouts. Roundtables are aimed at audiences of 10-12, are limited to two presenters, and cannot accommodate equipment other than a laptop computer provided by the presenter(s). Please note: Laptop computers will need to be battery operated, as Roundtables do not have access to power outlets. Roundtables also do not have access to an internet connection.

Sample Roundtable Discussion Descriptions

The Road to Student Success: Blending Instruction and Support Services
San Jacinto College’s Student Success Center is a bridge between student services and instruction. Study the partnerships with faculty, staff, and administrators, and methods for blending instruction and support services.

NGA Study: Addressing Academic Weaknesses of Recent High School Graduates
This study examines methods to determine the need for developmental education and formulates strategies to address weaknesses before high school graduation. Review study results and progress on implementing recommendations.

Poster Sessions

Poster Sessions take the form of an exhibit and are delivered primarily through the use of graphs, diagrams, pictures, data, and narrative text on bulletin boards. Presenters must arrange for their own display materials. During their assigned time periods, participants informally discuss their presentations with conference participants by making brief remarks, sharing information, and answering questions about the presentation topic. Conference participants are free to move from one presentation to another during the Poster Session. Presenters are encouraged to have ample handout materials available for participants. The conference will provide a table and two chairs for each accepted Poster Session presentation. Please note: No electrical support or internet connections are available in the poster session area.

Sample Poster Session Descriptions

Customer Service in Higher Education: Is This an Oxymoron?
Columbus State Community College implemented a higher quality of service for its students and community members by combining high touch and low tech in a college call center environment.  

The Learning Organization as a Model for Lifelong Learning
Discover the five principles of the learning organization in Peter Senge’s The Fifth Discipline. Participants explore how students use the principles for continued lifelong professional learning.