© 2019 by Goucher College Writing Program  |   For Questions email phaye.poliakoff-chen@goucher.edu


Included on this page are:

A Note from the President

The Accessibility Guide

Child-Care and Lactation Rooms

Accessibility Guide

For information on Accessibility for the Conference, Hotel, and City of Baltimore, please see our Accessibility Guide:

Accessibility Guide ~ Web Page

Accessibility Guide ~ PDF

Child-Care and Lactation Rooms

We have designated a space as a quiet room for nursing and/or pumping. This room is located behind our Conference Registration/Q&A  desk on the 4th floor (not the hotel’s main registration desk). 

Sadly, we do not have the resources to provide childcare services, but we have recommendations from local colleagues and moms. For potential childcare for the conference you can contact Jenna Conny of Red Wagon or contact Bright Horizons, which has a few centers downtown.

A Note from the President

This letter can be downloaded as a PDF here.


Happy July!


We are less than a month from the conference, and I imagine many of you are putting the finishing touches on your presentations. Just kidding! It’s time to start, right?


I’m writing to offer you some guidance as you craft your presentation. First of all, there have been some minor changes in session times, etc., so I encourage you to double-check the spreadsheet I’ve attached to this email to confirm where and when you are presenting. All presentation times and locations are also posted on our conference website, www DOT cwpa2019 DOT com. Soon, they will also be in Guidebook.


How Shall I Structure My Presentation?

Many of you have already considered this, and many of you are old hands at CWPA (no matter your actual age!). But hopefully you’ll let me provide a few brief thoughts here. First off, if you’re new to CWPA, you should know that it has a more informal, supportive vibe than some of the other national conferences. CWPA has a strong sense of collegiality. People don’t attend so they can rip apart someone’s presentation. We appreciate fine research, new perspectives, and innovative ideas, and we also appreciate interaction. I encourage you to make sure you leave time for questions, and if you would like to make your presentation interactive, please do so! If you are wrestling with a problem—methodological, pedagogical, managerial, budgetary—maybe your audience can help. Ask!


How Long Should My Presentation Be?

All concurrent sessions are 60 minutes long. Your individual presentation length will depend on whom you are presenting with. I scheduled panels of three or more people for entire 60-minute sessions. For individuals and duos, I scheduled no more than three presenters in a session. Poster sessions are in groups of four, since people can be more free-form with time, browsing through your posters and talking more informally with you. Email addresses are included in the spreadsheet; I encourage you to make contact with your co-presenters and work out how long each of you will present, what order, etc.


What Type of Technology Can I Use?

All breakout rooms will have projectors, screens, and cables. You will want to bring any adapters you think may be necessary to attach your laptop. Again, it may be helpful to contact your co-presenters as you work out what technology to bring.


For concurrent sessions, meeting rooms with audio support, including microphones, mixing boards, and a way to amplify computer audio include:

- Kent AB

- Laurel AB

- Laurel CD


Meeting rooms without audio support include:

- Essex A

- Essex B

- Essex C

- Falkland

- Galena

- Heron

- Iron

- James

- Kent C


This roughly equates to larger rooms having audio support, smaller rooms not. Of course, we wish we had been able to provide audio support for all rooms, but after lengthy consideration and discussion with the hotel, the Disability/Access Committee, the local team, etc., we decided our limited finances would be best used to provide audio support in the larger rooms and CART support for the whole-group sessions.

Suggestions from the CWPA Disability/Accessibility Committee

This year’s conference theme, “More Seats at the Table,” necessitates that everyone join in to promote access and create what the conference CFP refers to as “radical inclusion.” We can do it! CWPA’s commitment to accessibility for all members begins with each of us – and the important work of delivering accessible presentations must occur alongside project invention – as we make and design our materials. Of course, this will be a multi-year journey, but we are proud of the steps we’ve taken for this conference, most notably in securing CART (Computer Aided Real–Time Captioning or Communication Access Realtime Translation) support for the major full-group addresses, in which a professional types what is being said verbatim so that people can read the text output. This service will be offered at the Plenary, Awards Luncheon, and Saturday Panel.


Preparing and Delivering Accessible Presentations

The conference website, https://www.cwpa2019.com/conference-accessibility (www DOT cwpa2019 DOT com SLASH conference DASH accessibility), includes information and resources about preparing and delivering accessible presentations. The compiled materials are written by members of CCCC’s Committee on Disability Issues.


For suggestions on presentation space, handout design, digital access, and scripts, refer to “Composing Access,” which offers resources on preparing your presentation: https://u.osu.edu/composingaccess/before-the-presentation/ (u DOT osu DOT edu SLASH composingaccess SLASH before DASH the DASH presentation). For suggestions on delivering accessible presentations, view https://u.osu.edu/composingaccess/during-the-presentation/ (u DOT osu DOT edu SLASH composingaccess SLASH during DASH the DASH presentation).


Tara Wood provides detailed feedback on preparing a script, designing audio/visual elements, and interacting with sign interpreters or transcriptionists in this 2-page handout, Preparing an Accessible Presentation

The more accessible your presentation, the more likely your ideas are to reach all people who attend your session. Provide alternative formats of your materials at the beginning of the panel. Some may not be at the conference, so providing digital materials increases the distribution of your ideas.  Some may appreciate spoken translation of images.  Some may prefer to write questions instead of voicing them.

Here are some suggestions for how to make your presentation more accessible:

- Provide both large print versions (18 point) and 12 point of handouts.

- Provide both digital and paper versions as well as your in-person delivery.

- Bring the materials to the audience. Don’t assume all can move easily to get them.

- Describe presentation visuals. Don’t assume all can see them well.

- For Q&A, gather questions by index cards. Don’t rely on voice only.


Thank you for sharing your ideas with the CWPA community! We look forward to seeing you in Baltimore.




Mark Blaauw-Hara, PhD

President, Council of Writing Program Administrators

Writing Program Coordinator and Professor of English

North Central Michigan College