Q: I’m an independent researcher/Masters student, but I have an idea for a paper and I really want to share it! Can I submit a proposal?
A: Absolutely! Our definition of ‘early career researcher’ is very broad. You don’t need to have completed any higher degree to have something worthwhile to contribute and you don’t need to be currently employed in academia either. We’d love to hear what you are researching! Or, if you just want to join in the conference without presenting, we’re happy to have you attend that way as well.
Q: Do you accept proposals for creative work/craft essays?
A: Yes! Anything that fits with the theme of the conference that you are excited to share with us, we are excited to hear about.
Q: I want to submit an abstract, but I don’t have a paper written yet. Can I submit an abstract, even if the ideas in it change before the conference?
A: You definitely can! One of academia’s best kept secrets is that hardly anyone writes a paper before submitting an abstract. As long as you have an idea of the text/film/video game/song/etc. that you will be studying, and what your argument will be, go ahead and submit an abstract.
The only time you will need to notify us of any changes between abstract to paper is if there are radical changes. This is essentially only relevant if you don’t end up mentioning your original text at all, and is so we can adjust the programme accordingly. If this ends up happening and your paper has already been accepted, no worries! Just send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) as soon as possible.
Q: How long should presentations be?
A: Please limit (or extend?) presentations to 20 minutes only.
Q: Should I create a PowerPoint?
A: PowerPoints can be useful tools to help you get your argument across to the audience, as well as keep them focused on main points. However, if you don’t like them you don’t need to use them. Additionally, if you have a more creative way you want to present your paper – playing the video game you’re talking about while presenting, adding lots of opportunities for audience participation, having a dialogue with a puppet – there is no reason you shouldn’t submit an abstract just because the form doesn’t align with standard academic expectations.
Q: My presentation includes audio/visual elements (photos, videos, gifs, songs). Is that okay?
A: Under Fair Use, it is absolutely fine to use any clips, photos, or soundbites from anything you are researching to explain your analysis. However, we do ask that if any of these elements contain disturbing content such as gore, excessive violence, sexual violence, etc, that you provide us with a content warning at the start of your presentation. We will remind you of this on the day, so don’t worry if you add something last-minute to your presentation!
Q: You’ve requested author bios. What should mine contain?
A: An author bio should be short – no more than 150 words. They should give a brief outline of where your studies are taking place/have taken place, and what areas of interest are most relevant to your presentation at the conference. Even non-academic experiences – such as a job in publishing or working for a historic site – can be relevant.
Q: How will the conference be hosted?
A: Like many other conferences affected by the COVID-19 crisis, we will be hosting our two-day conference entirely online.
Q: How much is a ticket? What does a ticket to this conference get me?
A: Tickets are £15 which covers the cost of the following:
-Access to our Slack messaging board for the month of the conference so you can network more easily with fellow attendees before and beyond the conference itself
-Links to the live virtual presentations, which include 9 excellent panels, a ECR/PGR roundtable, and a keynote from decolonial scholar Dr Rebecca Duncan
-Access to recordings of the presentations that have been pre-approved by speakers
Q: Who are the conference organizers?
A: The conference is organized and hosted by PhD candidate Madelyn Marie Schoonover from the University of Stirling, with the assistance of Professor Justin Edwards and Dr Rebecca Duncan. You can reach out to Madelyn via Twitter @eyreudite.
Q: You haven’t answered my question, actually. How can I contact you?
A: Sorry about that! The easiest way to contact us is via Twitter @politicshorror. You can also email us at email@example.com