2021 Call for Session Proposals Closed

RESNA 2021 Annual Conference – Arlington, VA
Hyatt Regency Crystal City – July 7-10, 2021

Submission Instructions

Deadline Extended:  Monday, November 30, 11:59pm ET


RESNA’s sessions distinguish themselves in the field because the presenters work to ensure the learning experience is innovative, interdisciplinary, and informative. Presenters aim to: 1. Deliver current information; 2. Have a well-organized structure which stimulates and facilitates learning; and 3. Include discussions which draw upon the participants’ own expertise.

For 2021, we are accepting session proposals in the following configurations:

  • “Buzz” Sessions – 30-minute sessions devoted to one hot topic; this may include one speaker, a panel of speakers, a hands-on demonstration, a show and tell, or another creative format.
  • Workshops – 60-minute sessions which are interactive and make use of audience participation and group activities as a primary mechanism for knowledge transfer; this may include a single speaker, a panel of speakers, hands-on demonstrations, show & tell, and/or other creative formats.
  • Master Classes – 75 minute or 90 minute sessions which are in-depth explorations - and designed for advanced and experienced AT professionals; these may include a single speaker, a panel of speakers, hands-on demonstrations, show & tell, and/or other creative formats.

Each session type must include a visual component (such as a PowerPoint-type presentation), a hands-on or demonstration component where possible, handouts and/or other teaching aids, and time for discussion. Please consider innovative ways to convey information and increase audience participation.


RESNA will be offering IACET CEUs for educational content sessions. As a result, each submission must include: 

  • Learning Outcomes: 1 to 5 learning outcomes, depending on type and length of session. See the table at end of these instructions.
  • Quiz Questions – multiple-choice quiz questions to assess each learning outcome (also in table).


The Conference Committee and their chosen experts, composed of professionals with expertise in a range of topic areas, will review all proposals. Proposals shall be evaluated according to the general criteria listed below, in addition to the general fit into the programme as a whole.


  1. Proposal includes a clear abstract accurately summarizing the session content and learning outcomes, does not exceed the 100-word limit, and is suitable for marketing purposes. Although this is called an abstract, it is in truth a short description of what the audience should expect from your presentation. This description should be well developed, as it is what will largely market your presentation and will be published in the RESNA program;
  2. Proposal is thorough and includes concrete, measurable learning outcomes [See Section III of these instructions for more information on crafting suitable learning outcomes.];
  3. Subject matter is timely, relevant to the RESNA audience, and not too narrowly focused. Content of potential interest across disciplines is most welcome;
  4. Proposal clearly defines session structure, organization, and time allocation as appropriate to the proposed material; and
  5. Presenters have sufficient expertise and knowledge of the subject matter. 


The on-line submission system will be open as of Sunday, November 1, 2020 at 12pm noon ET until Monday, November 30th at 11:59 pm ET.

The on-line submission system will guide you through the step-by-step process outlined in the Conference Session Proposal Form. In addition, you may fill out the proposal form and upload it as well as a back-up should you so desire.  Click here for the Conference Session Proposal Form.

Getting started:

  1. Click on button below.
  2. If you’ve submitted to RESNA before, your email should be in the system. Enter your e-mail. If you’ve forgotten your password, click on “Forgot Password.”
  3. If this is your first time submitting to RESNA, you need to set up an account. Click on “New to CMT? Register.”
  4. Once you are logged in, choose the RESNA 2021 Conference.
  5. Click on the button “Create New Submission.”

Click Here to Submit Sessions

If you have problems submitting your proposal, contact the RESNA office at info@resna.org


We will make every attempt to notify presenters about the status of their proposals by 29 January 2021. The Principal Organizer/Author will receive all notification materials and is solely responsible for disseminating the information to his/her co-presenters.


We will schedule accepted proposals for presentation during the regular conference program. Please confirm your ability to attend the conference before submitting a proposal. If presenters have special scheduling needs or restrictions, please note such in your proposal or advise us immediately upon notification of workshop acceptance, so we may do our best to accommodate everyone’s needs.

The full Conference schedule will not be available until late spring.


Presenters agree to disclose to participants any proprietary interest in any product, instrument, device, service, or material discussed in the activity, and the source of any compensation related to the presentation.


The author/presenter/faculty certifies the material contained in their presentation/paper is original and created by said author(s), and in cases where materials have been used from other sources, proper documentation is provided and appropriate and necessary credit is given to the original sources. RESNA will not tolerate violation of copyright or intellectual property rules and shall take steps to sanction any RESNA author or presenter who does not follow established protocols for obtaining permission to use and/or reference work created by others. Authors/presenters/faculty of material to be distributed or presented at a RESNA educational activity shall abide by all applicable copyright and intellectual property laws, and are required to provide proper documentation and credit to the appropriate source in cases where materials have been used from other sources. Violators of this policy shall be excluded from participation in future RESNA educational programs.

Please direct any questions to the RESNA office:
Email: info@resna.org  
Subject Line: Conference Session Proposal
Phone: 202- 367-1121


  • Who can submit a proposal for a conference session? 

Any individual or group is welcome to submit a proposal for consideration; you do not need to be a member of RESNA. Collaborative proposals are strongly encouraged to involve cross discipline presentations by presenters from assorted special interest and professional specialty areas, including public policy organizations, AT Act Programs, comparable associations, international partners, or research programs.

  • I would like to demonstrate a new product during a conference session. May I submit a proposal? 

Sponsors and exhibitors receive first consideration for product demonstrations. While other manufacturer-sponsored sessions are welcome, these sessions have a better chance of being accepted if they discuss their product, strategy, or type of technology in collaboration with other companies, clinicians, researchers or consumers, and present their ideas or topics in a broader context which reflects a range of perspectives. Also, product demonstration proposals must have clear learning outcomes.

  • Is there reimbursement or payment for conference sessions? 

While RESNA recognizes the value sessions add to the conference program, we do not provide honoraria or travel reimbursements. Presenters will receive a special one-day registration rate for the conference for the day they are presenting. If you would like to attend multiple days of the conference, you may receive the RESNA member rate for the conference, whether or not you are a RESNA member.

  • What if the live conference is cancelled?

2021 will be a challenging year. While we are hopeful of an in-person in July conference, there is ample opportunity for our wishes not to be met. As a result, we are co-planning a virtual conference to take place during the same time frame. Presenters will be asked during the submission process whether they are interested, and able, to present their session virtually as well as in-person.


New Topic Areas:

In keeping with the conference theme, “Welcome Home”, RESNA is encouraging session proposals in the following topic areas:

SHO     Smart Home Technologies
e.g, the use of consumer smart home technologies such as home automation, virtual assistants, IOT (Internet of Things) appliances and other technologies to adapt and assist people with disabilities in the home.

HMD     Home Modifications
Technologies, modifications, accessibility, etc. specifically related to supporting living in the home; this can be for any age group.

Traditional Topic Areas:

ACT      Access and Communication Technology
e.g. computer/Computing Access and Use:  innovation in software and hardware; training strategies; integration of computer/computing technologies; alternative access; outcomes measurement.

AAC     Augmentative & Alternative Communication.  
e.g. augmentative and Alternative Communication: Assessment and intervention strategies; language representation techniques; clinical/technical; AAC research and developments; funding issues; service delivery options, outcomes measurement.

AGE     Aging
e.g. t
echnologies, interventions, policy, etc. specifically related to supporting aging.

AV        Autonomous Vehicles
e.g. technology, policy, and standards for autonomous vehicles with benefit people with disabilities.

COG     Cognitive and Sensory Impairments
e.g. cognitive disabilities; learning disabilities; developmental disabilities; cognitive rehabilitation and aids to memory; low vision/blindness; hearing impairment.

ETH      Ethics
e.g., real world examples of RESNA’s Standards of Practice; ethics of Assistive Technology for cognitive impairment; AI, machine learning and ethics

INT       Technologies for Less Resourced Areas
e.g. providing services or conducting research relative to Assistive Technology in developing countries and other resource-limited environments.

JEA      Job & Environmental Accommodation – including Ergonomics
e.g. access to employment, education, or built environments; ergonomics; farming and other rural interventions; EADL systems; universal design of products, places & systems; liability and legal issues associated with home access and workplace modifications. 

K12      K - 12 Practice
Efforts to improve access to quality AT services within the school setting. Tools, techniques, research, or applications which facilitate the promotion and improvement of assistive technology practice in the primary and secondary school setting.

NEW    Emerging Technology
e.g. e
merging technologies and innovations with the potential to improve the health, employment, community participation, and education of people with disability or aging. This is primarily for new technology not yet on the market or a new application of technology.

OUT     Service Delivery, Outcomes, & Measurement
e.g. service delivery programs and administration; remote service delivery; models, challenges, funding, and best practices; ethics for practitioners
e.g. outcomes measurement tools, application, importance, practice
e.g. measuring/quantifying function; documenting change in performance; testing validity and reliability of measurement instruments.

PP        Public Policy and Advocacy
e.g., legislation; credentialing and certification; advocacy for AT funding; access to services; nation-wide or model programs 

SM       Seating and Mobility – Including Complex Rehab Technology (CRT)
e.g., seating and wheelchair interventions; transportation issues; vehicle modifications; user training; wheelchair features and client/diagnosis matching; objective tests; custom vs. off-the-shelf solutions; 24/7 postural support; documentation and outcome measures for funding approval, mobility issues over a lifespan.

OTH     Other

DIRECTIONS for RESNA’s Conference Proposals

Complete Proposals MUST include all sections I-VI, and follow the format below.

I. Abstract (75-100 words) Note: This is a short description of what the audience can expect from your presentation. 

MUST be completed for submission review and for publication on the Website, and in the Final Program. The Abstract MUST NOT exceed 100 words and should clearly and succinctly summarize the session content and learning outcomes. It should be able to be used for marketing purposes. This is short description of what the audience should expect form your session.

II. Relevance to RESNA Audience / Interaction (75 words)

MUST be completed for submission review and for possible publication on the Website, and in the Final Program. Write a clear and succinct statement about: 1) Relevance to RESNA audience; 2) Timeliness of topic; and 3) Explanation of how the various AT-related professions and AT-disciplines may gain from this session. Please do not simply restate the information in the Abstract.  Please assist us in understanding your content.  

III. Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes are written statements which:

  • Provide a framework for acquired knowledge application;
  • Provide the basis for selection of content and instructional strategies;
  • Are participant-centered (e.g. “By the end of this program, learners will be able to [explain, describe, identify, list, differentiate, direct, perform, etc.]”.) and describe to learners exactly what knowledge, skills, and/or competencies they are expected to accomplish/demonstrate as a result of the learning activity;
  • Are the basis for providing periodic feedback, measuring progress, and final assessment of learning; and
  • Are appropriate in number for the planned activity.

Properly described learning outcomes are the key to providing IACET CEUs for conference activities. Presenters must include a slide at the beginning of their presentation showing the expected learning outcomes. 

Session Type

Number of Learning Outcomes

Buzz Session

 1- 2 Learning Outcomes

Workshop Session

 2- 3 Learning Outcomes

Master Class – 75 minutes

 3- 4 Learning Outcomes

Master Class – 90 minute

 3- 5 Learning Outcomes

IV. Quiz Questions

Multiple choice quiz questions are required to assess learning for each of the learning outcomes.  There should be one quiz question per learning outcome.  See example below.

Presenters must plan to include the answers to the quiz questions in their presentation.

IV. Proposed Handout Materials

List and describe all handout materials. Although not required with your proposal submission, session outlines and/or sample handouts assist reviewers in appraising the strength of your proposal.

V. Organizational Structure of Session

Specifically describe how session time will be allocated and outline what each presenter will contribute, using the format below. Please note - presenters are required to present and discuss their learning outcomes at the beginning of the session and to set aside time at the end of the session (as detailed below) for questions and audience interaction.

Information sharing sessions and other formats or activities which draw upon the experience and expertise of the audience are strongly encouraged. As mentioned at the beginning of this document, we are especially soliciting proposals for more interactive sessions to include diverse audience participation, as well as innovative ways of presenting information. You should provide enough detail so the reviewers will have a clear idea about the session content and the overall organization. If there are multiple presenters for your session, please specify the presenter name and session content for each time allocation. Total time must equal 30, 60, 75 or 90 minutes.

The example below is for a 60-minute session. For examples of 30 minute, 75 minute, and 90-minute sessions, visit the conference call for session submissions webpage.


Time in Minutes


Learning Outcomes to Be Addressed


Instructional Design: 

Presentation Format, Activities Planned, AV used

5 min

Introductions & Overview

J. Warum

Lecture. PowerPoint

15 min

Outcome # 1

List 3 new techniques for switch mounting…

T. Por qué

Lecture. Demonstration. PowerPoint.

15 min

Outcome # 2

Describe 3 alternative  access methods which “didn’t work” for x population

C. Pourquoi

Moderator-led audience participation. PowerPoint, Flip chart for recording comments.

15 min

Outcome #3

Describe  3 computer access method which did work for x population

J. Perché

Power Point; Moderator-led audience participation; flip chart for recording comments.

10 min


Discussion Period


T. Why

Moderator/Speaker-led Q/A and discussion.

Quiz Question Example

Example of quiz questions for the above session would be:

Learning Outcome

By the end of this session, participants will be able to…

Quiz Question

Answer Key

List 3 new techniques for switch mounting

Which of the following is a technique for switch mounting? Choose all that may apply.


  1. Technique 1
  2. Technique 2
  3. Technique 3
  4. All of the Above


Describe 3 alternative computer access methods which “didn’t work” for x population

Which of the following alternative computer access methods did NOT work for x population?

  1. Joystick
  2. Eye Gaze 
  3. Head Mount
  4. None of the Above – They all Worked


Describe 3 computer access methods which work for x population.

Which of the following computer access methods work for x population?

  1. Joy Stick
  2. Eye Gaze
  3. Head Mount
  4. All of the Above


VII. Brief description of presenters’ experience with this topic area.

Describe the professional expertise of each presenter with respect to the proposed subject matter. Please include relevant conference presentation or instructional experience. An abbreviated CV may be used if it provides an effective summary. This is required by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET) in order for RESNA to provide CEUs for your Conference Session. (Approximately 50-100 words)