Graduate students (currently enrolled or who have received a masters or doctoral degree within the past year) are invited to submit Discovery Session proposals for works in progress or completed research. We seek proposals that reflect and showcase our vibrant community of practice — promoting theory, research and methodology, and practice in online teaching and learning. 

Presenters will be recognized at the conference Awards Ceremony.

Benefits of Attendance and Presentation at OLC

  • Share research ideas/results
  • Network with OLC experts & attendees
  • Sharpen Communication & Presentation Skills
  • Receive Detailed Feedback from Experts in the Field

More about the Graduate Student Discovery Session Presentation Format

Proposals may include works in progress or completed research results. Discovery Sessions provide an excellent opportunity to present your ideas to your peers in a community forum. 

Those presenting as a graduate student through this CFP process will receive a discounted registration rate of $295. Submissions must be entered as the session type “Graduate Student Discovery Session” to be eligible for this special registration rate.

Note: Each presenter will prepare a digital presentation and upload to VoiceThread. Each accepted presenter will register as a virtual attendee. If you are an onsite presenter, you can also present a Discovery Session in the virtual to virtual modality. 

Key Features:

  • An asynchronous opportunity for virtual presenter to virtual audience using VoiceThread. 
  • Allows opportunities for interaction using a presentation style that is conversational, sharing concise but impactful information in an online modality. 
  • Interactivity is personalized based on audience members visiting your VoiceThread presentation. Allows for deeper connections and more detailed discussions.

Submission Process
We seek submissions by students currently enrolled in or recently graduated (within one year) from a Graduate (Master or Doctoral) program whose research is relevant to online teaching and learning.  The proposal submission must follow the guidelines of the OLC Innovate 2021 conference sessions.  Note that each individual is limited to no more than one proposal submission to the Graduate Student Discovery Session type.

Proposal Review Process
The following questions, in addition to the OLC Innovate 2021 CFP selection criteria, will guide evaluators in the proposal review process.

  • Do the title and abstract clearly describe the presentation?
  • Is the proposed topic timely and/or appropriate?
  • Will this session positively contribute to the conference and to the field?


  • Proposals due by 11:59pm ET October 7 (extended from September 23)
  • Notification of acceptance by November 9, 2020
  • Deadline for presenters to accept is November 20, 2020
  • Deadline for presenters to register is January 20, 2021
  • Final date for presenters to edit abstracts is January 20, 2021
  • Final presentation upload date is March 1, 2021

For questions or additional assistance, email