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If you've developed a promising transfer policy, practice, program, or research project, we want to know about it!

As a NISTS 2023 presenter, you’ll have the opportunity to share your insights and lessons learned with hundreds of higher education professionals who, like you, are focused on improving transfer student success. Attendees hold a variety of roles within student and academic affairs and hail from community colleges, universities, and other organizations throughout the country.

Proposal Deadline:  Wednesday, August 31st at 11:59 pm PST

What To Expect

This year’s annual conference includes both in-person and virtual presentation options. If you have the funds to travel, we hope you’ll join us in Portland, Oregon, for a mid-sized conference experience that features face-to-face presentations and networking opportunities. For those who cannot travel, the full-experience virtual conference will allow you to present live or on-demand via our easy-to-use conference app. Additional details about both events, including a description of this year's conference theme, is available on the general conference webpage.


What We're Looking For

The NISTS annual conference is only as good as its content, so we’re relying on you to propose sessions that address a variety of pressing issues and obstacles related to the transfer student experience. There are numerous topic options that span the full transfer student lifecycle, and we’re eager to see your creative approach to ensuring that your transfer students have an equitable and holistic transfer experience.


Whether you focus on research, theory, or a specific policy, practice, or program, your proposal should be tailored to meet the goals and expectations of this conference. We cannot accept sessions that do not clearly center transfer student needs and identities or the professionals who support them on their journey.

In addition, please keep in mind that conference attendees are interested in practical information, specifically how they might utilize your insights within their particular contexts and funding models. The strongest sessions are informative and interactive and also address how the material is relevant to institutions/systems of various size, scope, and sector.


Proposals are due by 11:59 pm PST on Wednesday, August 31st. Final decisions will be announced in mid-late October.

Proposals are evaluated in a blind review process using Proposal Review Guidelines and an Evaluation Rubric, which include the following broad categories listed below. Reviewers will assess proposals on their ability to promote general understanding, practical applicability, and skill development across a range of conference attendee experience levels.    

  • Detail & Organization:  The background and rationale for the session is thoroughly explained in a clear and logical order.

  • Evidence of Expertise:  The proposal is based in theory, relevant research, and/or demonstrated best practices and includes assessment or outcome data.

  • Significance: The session topic is relevant and important to the transfer field.

  • Applicability:  Session material is applicable to various areas and institution types, sizes, and sectors. 

  • Engagement Strategies:  The proposal includes audience engagement strategies that reflect the basic principles of adult learning.

  • Learning Goals: The session targets appropriate and real-world learning goals and adequately explains how those objectives will be met.


NISTS reserves the right to refuse proposals that are not consistent with our mission and goals, as well as those that promote a for-profit product or service from organizations which are not confirmed conference sponsors.

Session Formats

When submitting your proposal, you must designate your session as one of the following session formats. You will have the opportunity to specify whether you prefer to present in-person or virtually. Please keep in mind that some sessions may be assigned to alternate formats due to space constraints and technology limitations.

Please also note that presenters must submit a copy of their presentation slides and handouts approximately three weeks prior to the event start date so that we have plenty of time to upload the materials to the conference app. Detailed instructions, as well as tips and suggestions for delivering both in-person and virtual presentations, will be emailed to all confirmed presenters.

CONCURRENT SESSION (50 minutes)     <In-Person or Virtual>

All concurrent sessions are scheduled for 50 minutes. Presentations styles may vary, but a minimum of 10 minutes must be reserved for audience questions and answers. 

Please note that virtual concurrent session presenters must have access to a strong, reliable internet connection during their presentations. Virtual sessions will be delivered via Zoom using the conference app, and most standard features like chat and breakout rooms will be available to facilitate virtual audience interaction. NISTS will handle all the scheduling logistics, and a conference volunteer will be assigned to kick off the session and monitor technology throughout.


ON-DEMAND VIDEO (30 minutes)     <Virtual Only>

On-Demand Video sessions may last a maximum of 30 minutes and, for obvious reasons, preclude real-time interaction with the audience. Presenters must pre-record their presentation videos, then send us the .mp4 file to upload to the conference app. There are lots of quality, easy-to-use video resources available, so we encourage presenters to be as creative as they’d like in producing their video presentations.

POSTER     <In-Person or Virtual>


In-person poster presentations will be showcased in a two-hour gallery during the Opening Reception (date and time tbd). All posters will be displayed on a 4’ x 8’ bulletin board, and presenters will be expected to informally discuss their work with conference participants. 

Virtual poster presentations will be showcased in an on-demand gallery in the conference app throughout the virtual conference. Virtual posters must be submitted in PDF format and can be traditionally styled or take the form of a presentation slide deck.

When submitting your proposal, you must also designate your session as one of the following session types. [Session Type Descriptions]

  • Educational

  • Facilitated Discussion

  • Research Spotlight

  • Educational Partner/Sponsor Session

Session Themes

We believe it takes all of us working together, beyond silos, to effectively support transfer students’ diverse identities, needs, and pathways. All conference sessions should prioritize evidence-based and culturally relevant practices and align with at least one of the following broad session themes. These themes intentionally blur traditional boundaries between functional areas and across 2-year, 4-year, and blended institutional types. [Session Theme Descriptions]


  • Credits and Degree Pathways

  • Diversity and Inclusion*

  • Leadership and Strategic Planning

  • Matriculation Trends and Issues

  • Partnerships and Collaboration

  • Special Populations*

  • Transition Programs and Supports

*Conference evaluation data consistently indicates that attendees crave more content related to these themes. If you have expertise in these areas, please share it!

How To Submit

Please review the Proposal Checklist for a detailed list of required information. All proposals must be submitted online using the University of North Georgia’s InfoReady Review platform. Presenters will be required to accept the terms of the Presenter Agreement prior to submitting their final proposal.


  1. Create an Account. Access the InfoReady Application Portal. Click the Login link in the top right corner of the screen then click the Register button under the "Login for Other Users" section. Provide your name, email, and password and click Create Account. If you've previously created an account, then your login information should still work.

  2. Confirm Account. After creating your account, you will receive an automated email requesting account confirmation. You must use the link provided in the email to verify your account and enable proposal submission.

  3. Log In. Access the InfoReady Application Portal and login using your newly created account under the "Login for Other Users" section. Select the "NISTS 2023 Call for Proposals" application and follow the prompts to submit your session proposal.

The proposal deadline has passed. The next opportunity to submit is summer 2023. 


Please do not hesitate to contact Emily Kittrell if you have any questions or need additional information. 

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