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Call for Proposals
2020 NASW National Conference

Social Workers Make a Difference

Welcome to the 2020 NASW National Conference, Social Workers Make a Difference, Call for Proposals Portal. These proposals will provide the rich, educational foundation for the 100+ sessions that the Conference offers. Proposals will be taken for session formats such as:

  • Individual presentations
  • Symposia
  • Poster Presentations

Thank you for your interest in participating in the 2020 NASW National Conference and we look forward to receiving your proposal!

All proposals must be submitted online, “hard copy” or paper submissions will not be considered. The deadline to submit your proposal for the 2020 National Conference is 11:59 PM EDT, September 30, 2019. Please follow the instructions and guidelines below while preparing your submission.

  1. First, you should create your profile to complete the proposal submission process. If you haven’t created a profile yet, click on the “Get Started!” button at the end of this page which will take you to the page to create your profile. To help streamline your proposal submission process, we strongly encourage you to use the email address associated with your NASW account. If you need assistance identifying the email address associated with your NASW account, click here and you will be rerouted to the NASW website. 
  2. Once you have created your profile, click on “save,” then log-in to the site by clicking on the log-in link in the upper left corner of this page using your email address and the unique password you created.
  3. If you have alreready created a profile, click on the "log in" button at the top left of the page to proceed to completing your submission. 
  4. After logging in you may begin the proposal submission process by clicking on the “Submissions” Tab

Dates of the Conference:June 14-17, 2020
Location:Washington Hilton Hotel, Washington, DC 20008
Audience:Social workers, mental health and allied professionals
Submission Deadline:11:59pm EDT, Monday, September 30, 2019
Conference Website:http://www.socialworkers.org/events/conferences
Registration Fees:
 Presenter Registration:
NASW Member:$415
Student Member: $175

 Special Early Bird Rates (January 8– March 31, 2020):
NASW Member: $415 
Student Members: $175

 Regular Registration (April 1 – June 12, 2020):
NASW Member:$475 
Non-Member: $699 
Student Member: $225

 Onsite Registration (June 13 -- June 17, 2020):
 NASW Member:$575 
Non-Member: $599 
Student Member: $250


The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) invites submissions of proposals to present at the 2020 NASW National Conference, Social Workers Make a Difference. Social workers are leaders of change who are making a difference in helping define and strengthen the social safety net of society. NASW welcomes compelling proposals that address a wide range of topics related, but not limited to, making a difference and helping to shape our future. Be a part of this valuable professional development experience in the nation’s capital by networking and sharing your knowledge, innovative solutions, and strategies with thousands of social workers and allied professionals from all over the country.  

General Submission Guidelines
The 2020 NASW National Conference will focus on best practices, policies, and research findings that incorporate leading change and collaboration. Abstracts are encouraged in all social work practice areas, and at all levels of practice (micro, mezzo, or macro).

Proposals will be organized around issue and practice areas

Please note that you may submit only once as a primary/lead presenter.

We recommend you gather your information in advance before you submit your proposal to NASW for consideration.

The proposal submission process requires that you provide the following information:  

  1. Name/Credentials/Affiliation/Contact information for primary presenter (and for symposium presentations, two additional co-presenters)
  2. Brief biography for each presenter (maximum of 500 characters)
  3. Presentation format
    • Symposium: Topic-focused 90 minute panel sessions with three speakers
    • Individual presentation: 45 minute presentations (conference committee will place two individual speakers in a 90 minute session based on a common theme)
    • Poster presentation: Poster presenters are encouraged to discuss their work with attendees at designated breaks.
  4. Title of presentation (maximum of 100 characters)
  5. Brief presentation abstract (maximum of 500 characters. Please Note: This will be the description of your session used in the conference program book)
  6. Abstract (maximum of 4,000 characters)
    • Issue focus
    • Program description
    • Description of the target population (ex. students, practitioners, policymakers, or a specific client population)
    • Description of the social work practice intervention, research, or policy change including how the concepts of shaping the future are incorporated into the presentation
    • Conclusions and implications for practice, policy, professional development, education, or research
    • Three learning objectives specific to the conference theme and the session topic,  that clearly state what the participants will be able to do, as a result of your presentation.
  7. Issue/Topic Area/Target Population (Select One)
    (Primary Topic Area)
  • Older Adults/Caregivers
  • Child Welfare
  • Children and Families
  • Criminal Justice/Juvenile Justice
  • Disabilities
  • Ethnicity & Race
  • Health Care
  • Housing/Homelessness
  • Immigrants, Refugees & Displaced Persons
  • Interpersonal Violence
  • Mental Health
  • School Social Work
  • Service Members/Military/Veterans
  • Substance Use Disorders/ Chemical Dependency
  • Youth

8. Level/Type of Intervention (Select One)
(Secondary Topic Area)

  • Administrative/Supervision
  • Advocacy
  • Clinical Practice
  • Community Organizing
  • Cultural Competence
  • Discrimination & Equity Issues
  • Entrepreneurial/Leadership
  • Ethics & Values
  • Higher Education
  • Social Policy
  • Political Social Work
  • Private Practice
  • Research & Program Evaluation
  • Technology

Proposals will be reviewed based on the following criteria:

  1. The topic is consistent with the 2020 conference theme.
  2. The submission adheres to the conference proposal guidelines.
  3. The abstract is well organized, concise, and clearly written.
  4. The author clearly states the purpose and objectives of the presentation.
  5. The abstract provides evidence of the author’s knowledge of the topic. 
  6. The topic and content are evidence-based.
  7. The subject contributes to a balanced conference program.

Information on your presentation will appear in the program as it is submitted online. However, NASW reserves the right to make minor edits. Images and tables are not permitted in any proposal.

Session proposals must be received online by 11:59pm EDT on September 30, 2019. Due to space limitations, not all deserving proposals can be accommodated. Reviewers will prioritize proposals based on a balanced program as well as the listed review criteria. You will be notified in January via email regarding the decision on your proposal decision.

Submission Technical Instructions:

  • As you begin the submission process you will be issued a program proposal identification number. This identification number is to be used by the primary presenter. This identification number only references your proposal.  When you register for the conference, a different identification number will be provided. Please hold on to your proposal identification number, as you will need it to reference your proposal throughout this process.
  • Fill out the form completely. Most fields are required. Only complete forms in the system will be considered for review. 

We look forward to receiving your proposal.


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