Communication History Division 


Nicole Maurantonio, Chair
402-I Weinstein Hall
University of Richmond
28 Westhampton Way
Richmond, VA 23173

Derek Vaillant, Vice Chair

5370 North Quad 

University of Michigan

105 S. State Street

Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1285


The Communication History Division is dedicated to providing a base for the historical study of communication. Communication scholars from across the field and at different stages in their respective work should feel encouraged to submit scholarship to our division. We emphasize four key areas of scholarship:

  1. The history of media and communication: this involves research concerning issues in the development of communication and media as critical facets of social, cultural, and political-economic life. Research generally classified as media history is a major component of this area. Much of the historical work in the field of communication addresses this set of issues;

  2. The history of communication study: much as other social sciences (including psychology, sociology, anthropology, and economics) have subfields addressing their own intellectual histories, the history of the study of communication allows us to engage in a reflexive dialogue concerning the strengths and weaknesses of the institution of communication studies; 

  3. The history of the idea of communication: scholars who address this issue take on one of the fundamental tasks of understanding how communication has been conceptualized, as well as how and why these conceptualizations have changed over time.

  4. Memory studies: memory scholars frequently attend to communicative processes as they relate to the construction of social memory. This makes memory scholarship an important component of communication history.

More details about the Communication History Division are available at our website:

Conference proposals:

We welcome papers, panels, roundtables, works-in-progress, and poster presentations on topics that relate to these broad areas of historical inquiry. The division reminds potential contributors that `history’ is linked to numerous methodological and theoretical approaches to scholarship, and encourages submitted to think broadly about history.

The Communication History Division accepts the following kinds of submissions, all of which should represent previously unpublished research:

1. Full papers: In accordance with ICA guidelines, these should be no longer than 8,000 words (25 pages) in length, plus tables, images, appendices, and references. Papers should be in 12-point type, double-spaced, with 1-inch margins and with all identifying marks removed.

2. Panel sessions:
Preconstituted panel proposals should include:

Preference will be given to preconstituted panel submissions that include at least one graduate student presenting her or his work.

3. Roundtable submissions:

Roundtables are intended to provide for a larger number of participants than the other sessions. Each participant offers a relatively short presentation. Roundtables are expected to foster interaction among presenters, and between presenters and audience members. Roundtable proposals should include:

Preference will be given to preconstituted roundtable submissions that include at least one graduate student presenting her or his work.

4. Works-in-progress:

New for the 2020 conference, the division will accept extended abstracts addressing works-in-progress. These submissions should be shorter than a full paper (no more than 3000 words), describing ongoing research that could benefit from feedback at the conference. Submissions should present the purpose of the research, research questions, relevant context, and may include preliminary findings. Accepted submissions will be presented as part of a designated works-in-progress session during the conference. Authors submitting works-in-progress must include the words “Extended Abstract” on their title and in their paper title when entering it into the ICA submission site (e.g., Extended Abstract: Paper title).

5. Interactive poster presentations:

Papers intended for the interactive poster presentation should be submitted in full paper (up to 8,000 words) format. Submitters of papers that are particularly well suited to be visual/interactive format of the poster session are highly encouraged to indicate this in their submission.

6. Blue-Sky Workshops:

These are conceived as interactive events in which all attendees are invited to participate. Examples of BSWs are: critical discussions of current concerns within the discipline, of theories, concepts, or methods, or the collective development of new research strategies or best-practice recommendations for a field in communication.

NB: ALL proposals submitted to CHD should indicate whether submitters are willing to have their papers/panels included in the Division’s interactive poster session for the 2019 conference.

Please note that, in addition to scheduling conventional panel and paper sessions, the division may also offer an extended session, in which the presenters and audience have additional time to discuss the topics and themes involved.

If you have any queries about submitting a proposal to CHD, please contact Nicole Maurantonio (

Authors should submit papers and panel proposals to the Communication History Division online at the ICA website no later than 1 November 2019 at 12 noon EST.

Early submission is strongly recommended to avoid any technical glitches. Please follow the ICA instructions on submission carefully: to reach the conference website, go to the ICA home page at and follow the link for 2020 Conference Submission. ICA will send acceptance/rejection notices to submitters by mid-January 2020.

Top Papers and Travel Awards

Top papers will receive recognition awards at the group’s business meeting. The top two student papers will be awarded travel funding awards. To be eligible, student authors must indicate their status: please identify your paper as a student paper when submitting it through the ICA submission system, and not within the body of the paper itself. Papers jointly authored by faculty and students are not eligible for the student awards. The division will offer student travel awards based on ranking and financial need. To be considered for any award, the author must be a member of the Communication History Division.


Please volunteer to review for the Communication History Division: We encourage all faculty and graduate students with advanced knowledge about some aspect of communication history to volunteer to review submissions. If you do not have one, you will need to create a ScholarOne account to review. Those who submit papers are also eligible to review. In fact, we encourage them to do so. We will do our best to match the three or four papers you are asked to review to your own research interests. The Division is very grateful to all who serve as reviewers for the annual conference. Please remember to volunteer on the ICA website, or e-mail Nicole Maurantonio directly with questions (