Call for Proposals | TCDL 2021

About the Texas Conference on Digital Libraries

For over a decade, the Texas Conference on Digital Libraries has covered topics relevant to the creation, promotion, and preservation of research, scholarship, and cultural heritage digital materials. 

TCDL brings together those working on digital projects — including outreach and liaison librarians, repository managers, archivists, catalogers, faculty members, technical staff, students, and others — in order to build a practical, usable, and sustainable model for digital libraries. This year by sharing what we have worked on with each other through presentations, posters, games, and lively discussions, we can continue the legacy of being together although we are far apart. 

We encourage submissions from students, scholars, and professionals in all career or study levels, representing themselves, public and private organizations, and institutions from Texas and beyond. 

Submit your proposal


The following are some broad areas the committee hopes to see covered at TCDL 2021:

  • Perspectives featuring underrepresented communities/narratives in digital libraries
  • Creation, promotion, preservation, or management of digital projects/assets
  • Software creation or innovative use
  • Application development
  • Copyright, institutional repositories, or other Digital Scholarship topics 
  • Open Access, Open Education, or other Open initiatives
  • Collaborations across departments, schools, or institutions
  • Integration of digital means into new spaces
  • Digital preservation topics
  • Rights, reuse, or risk management
  • Analytics and assessment of digital library collections
  • Accessibility issues related to digital libraries
  • (Re)framing traditional roles and identities

For more inspiration, browse previous years’ successful proposals:

Submit your proposal


The following are the session types we are accepting this year: 

  • Presentations – General talks on practical work, theoretical or speculative issues, or ongoing completed research
    • Timeframe: 15-20 minutes; 10 minutes for Q&A (moderated by TCDL)
    • Format: Zoom meeting or Zoom webinar (pre-recorded or live); moderated Q&A (live)
    • Session length: Presentations are usually paired by topic / theme for two or three presentations per hour-long session. 
  • 24×7 Lightning Talks – Short talks comprising no more than 24 slides. 
    • Timeframe: 7 minutes; additional time for Q&A (moderated by TCDL) 
    • Format: Zoom meeting or Zoom webinar (pre-recorded or live); moderated Q&A (live)
    • Session length: Lightning talks are grouped by topic / theme for a session.  
  • 3 Minute Posters – Virtual Posters with a pre-recorded explanation / “elevator pitch.”
    • Timeframe: 3 minutes for video; answering questions via email
    • Format: Pre-recorded; virtual poster file
    • Session Length: Poster & Trailer will be available throughout the conference for viewing.
  • Workshops / Demonstrations – In-depth instruction on important areas of digital library practice or demonstrations/tutorials of useful tools and technologies. 
    • Timeframe: Events in this category can range from 1 to 2 hours
    • Format: Zoom meeting or Zoom webinar (live)
    • Session length: Workshops are a single, stand-alone session. 
    • Proposals should include: Objectives/outcomes for the session, Target audience, Tech requirements, Prerequisite knowledge or experience, Time expectation
  • Birds-of-a-Feather – Roundtable discussions about a particular topic.
    • Timeframe: 45 to 50 minutes
    • Format: Zoom meeting (live)
    • Session length: Roundtable discussions are a stand-alone session. 
    • Proposals should include: Topic of discussion, Intended audience, and Agenda for meeting

The program committee peer-reviews and ranks all submitted proposals to assure significant, timely, and authoritative information. To have the strongest program possible, we may accept a proposal as a different presentation type than originally proposed. Considerations include:

  • Organization – How effectively is the session structured; how well is it presented in the proposal?
  • Significance – How well does the session contribute to libraries, archives, research, student success, or society?
  • Originality – How original or interesting is the topic being presented?
  • Format – How conducive is the proposed session to the online conference format?
  • Relevance – Is the proposed session significant to TCDL-related topics?


Presenters will need access to a microphone and (preferably) web camera. TCDL will share instructions and best practices on recording videos, and hold tech rehearsals in Spring 2021. 

Submit Your Proposal

Get started and submit here when you’re ready. The proposal deadline is January 29, 2021.  

Complete proposals must include a title, abstract (no more than 250 words), and information for each speaker (name, title, institution, and email address). 

Use this document to prepare your proposal. Copy and paste the questions into a new document. 

All papers presented at TCDL 2021 are published in the conference proceedings, and made available through the Texas Digital Library’s website. The conference language is English.

Be a part of the 2021 TCDL program by submitting your session proposal now. Deadlines and other key dates are approaching quickly!

  • November 6: Call for Proposals opens
  • January 29: Deadline for all conference proposals
  • March: Notification of acceptance
  • Conference Dates: May 24-27, 2021 
  • Location: TCDL 2021 will be held entirely online. 


If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact Thank you!

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