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Teaching American Studies: The Inaugural Conference

8-9 July 2019, University of Warwick

Call for Papers

This will be the first conference of its kind about American Studies pedagogy in UK Higher Education. Building on the increasing numbers of teaching-focused panels at the annual BAAS conference, this immersive residential event will provide a space for those who are interested in teaching American Studies at university level to have in-depth discussions of pedagogical approaches in our field. In the current climate of the Teaching Excellence Framework, teaching is becoming increasingly central to both our day-to-day work and our promotions and employment opportunities. The conference will create an opportunity to examine teaching and learning within the field of American Studies at the university level. It will also provide support and advice to postgraduate and early career colleagues who are new to teaching American Studies. Participants will be encouraged to share good practice, discuss pedagogical innovations, and to consider how American Studies can best deliver a positive student experience whilst retaining disciplinary identity in the current HE context.

Plenary Roundtable: “Teaching with the Journal of American Studies”.

Chaired by members of the JAS editorial team, this session will bring together a range of American Studies scholars who use articles from the Journal of American Studies in their teaching, and an edited transcript of this session will appear as an “Exchange” in the journal. We welcome proposals to participate in this Plenary Roundtable from any scholars who use JAS in their teaching.

Panel Sessions:

We invite paper and panel proposals on any topics related to teaching American Studies from scholars at any career-stage. We would especially welcome papers and panels that address the following issues:

  • Decolonising the American Studies curriculum
  • Using American archives (digital and otherwise) and material culture with students
  • Innovative ways to teach the survey course(s)
  • Teaching in the age of Trump
  • Using interdisciplinary and/or hemispheric approaches
  • Engaging and including diverse students
  • Approaches to teaching “difficult” subjects (such as slavery)
  • The role of scholar-activism in the classroom
  • Involving students in American Studies curriculum design
  • Alternative approaches to American Studies assessment
  • Embedding employability into American Studies

All panels should be conceived as roundtable discussions rather than traditional research papers. Papers (whether submitted individually or as part of a panel) should be no longer than ten minutes. Proposals for panels that represent a range of American Studies sub-fields are particularly welcome.

Submission Information:

We are dedicated to fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion. We will give preference to panels that reflect the diversity of our field in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and institutional affiliation. We will also give preference to panels that include a mix of participants from across the career spectrum (i.e., from postgraduate to professor), or that include undergraduate students as part of the presenting team. All-male panel proposals will not be accepted.

  • 10-Minute Paper Proposals should include a title, an abstract of no more than 200 words, and a brief CV.
  • Panel Proposals should include a title, an abstract of no more than 200 words for each constituent 10-minute paper (if applicable), an abstract of no more than 200 words describing the panel session as a whole, and a brief CV for each participant.
  • Proposals to participate in the Plenary Roundtable should include details of the JAS article(s) you have used, and a summary of no more than 200 words describing how you use the article(s) in your teaching.

To submit a proposal for the conference, please use our online form.

Deadline for submission of proposals: 1 May 2019.

Conference Organisers: Dr Lydia Plath (University of Warwick), Dr Rebecca Stone (University of Warwick) and Dr Ben Offiler (Sheffield Hallam University)

Any and all questions should be directed to l dot j dot plath at warwick dot ac dot uk.

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US Embassy London Logo

The conference organisers thank the British Association for American Studies and the US Embassy London for their generous support for this event, which will enable us to reduce costs for postgraduate and early-career researchers. Support will include a significant reduction in the conference rate and the provision of travel and childcare bursaries where possible.