Game Studies Division

Conference Call for Papers

Vivian Hsueh Hua Chen, Vice Chair
Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore


The ICA Games Studies Division (GSD) welcomes research from multiple disciplines that investigates human communication related to games in some capacity, including the study of games themselves as well as communication phenomena associated with games. Topically, in addition to (video/digital) games, the scope includes many forms of advanced media experiences (e.g., virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality) and simulations. Disciplinarily, the GSD fosters intersections between communication and media studies, cultural studies, social sciences, computer sciences, design, cognitive sciences, engineering, education, health studies, and information technology studies. We encourage submissions using a wide array of theoretical and methodological approaches (including but not limited to critical/rhetorical, qualitative, and quantitative research methods). 

More specifically, our division welcomes papers, panels, and poster presentations on GAMES topics involving (but not limited to) the following: 

● the social, psychological and political uses and effects 

● users’ motivations and emotional, cognitive, and psychophysiological experiences 

● the cultural affordances, uses, and meanings 

● contextual, critical, and socio-political analyses 

● comparative media analyses 

● human-computer interaction 

● design principles and considerations 

● educational, industrial, instructional and business application 


All relevant guidelines and requirements in the ICA’s general call for papers apply to submissions made to the Game Studies Division (such as formatting and registration requirements). All submissions should be in APA format (6th edition), 12 pt Times New Roman, double-spaced. Please note specific requirements for each of its five submission types below.

Important notice: All submissions need to indicate the type of submission in ALL CAPS, at the very beginning of the abstract. It could be: RESEARCH PAPER, THEORY PAPER, FLASHLIGHT, PANEL PROPOSAL, POSTER PROPOSAL.

Please be aware that we are very strict on our submissions’ criteria. Submissions that do not meet the general ICA submission guidelines, the GSD-specific formal criteria listed below, and/or the kind of submissions explained below will be excluded from the review process. Feel free to contact us if any clarifications are needed. Student submissions must be clearly labeled, with the understanding that student authors are the primary creators of the work and are the sole author or first author of the paper.

Full research papers 

● Must include at least one completed study. 

● Maximum of 20 pages, inclusive of references. Title page, abstract, figures, and tables are not counted against the page limit. 

● Must be anonymous. Please remove all identifying information. 

Full theoretical papers 

● Must include the development of new theoretical approaches to the studies of GAMES. 

● Maximum of 20 pages, inclusive of references. Title page, abstract, figures, and tables are not counted against the page limit. 

● Must be anonymous. Please remove all identifying information. 

Flashlights (for students only) 

● Submission can be about any topic from any division or interest group. Flashlights are intended to facilitate cross-disciplinary and cross-division connections. This is a forum for new theoretical approaches or findings of emerging research from ANY ICA division and interest group. Thus, Flashlights provide opportunity for ALL ICA students to present their projects to ALL ICA members. ICA members from all divisions and IGs have the chance to get a glimpse what students inside and outside their fields are working on. 

● May only be submitted by students – either solo or team presentations. 

● Maximum length is 6 pages, including highlights at the beginning (maximum of 80 words); this page limit excludes figures, tables, and references (maximum 15 references). 

● Accepted proposals will be scheduled as 5-minute presentations in a session that is promoted to all ICA divisions. The gathered audience will vote for the best Flashlight, which will result in a specific best paper award given by our Division. 

● Must be anonymous. Please remove all identifying information. 

Poster proposals 

● Works-in-progress or late-breaking results, considered only for the interactive paper plenary session. 

● Must include detailed descriptions of the GAMES-related research, and any potential results not available at the time of submission that will likely be included in the final interactive presentation. 

● Length 4 to 6 pages, inclusive of title page, abstract, references, figures, and tables. 

● Must be anonymous. Please remove all identifying information. 

Panel proposals 

● Must include 1) a 400-word rationale for the panel, 2) a 150-word abstract describing each participant’s contribution, 3) a description of each panelist’s qualifications regarding the proposed topic, and 4) complete contact information for each panelist. 

● Please note that panel proposals should have contributions from at least two different countries, gender balance, and no more than one contributor from a single faculty, department or school 

● Each panelist must be willing to register for and attend the conference if the panel is accepted. 

● Suggestions for co-sponsored panels with other ICA divisions are also welcome. 

Review Criteria. Reviewers will evaluate submissions based on these criteria: 

Full Research Papers: Quality of Literature Review, Quality of Methods, Quality of Analyses, Relevance to GAMES, and Quality of Writing. 

Full Theoretical Papers: Quality of the Theory Development, Quality of the Application to GAMES, Quality of Derived Assumptions and/or Research Questions, Relevance to GAMES, and Quality of Writing. 

Flashlights: Quality of Summarized Literature Review, Quality of Presentation of Approaches and/or Methods, Quality of Summarized Findings, and Quality of Writing. 

Panel proposals: Quality of the Rationale, Quality of Contributions, Coherence of Contributions, Relevance to GAMES, and Quality of Writing. 

Poster proposals: Quality of Literature Review, Quality of Methods, Proposed Analyses, Relevance to GAMES, and Quality of Writing. 


 We encourage all submitters to volunteer as reviewers. When submitting in the ICA submission site, please fill in your areas of expertise, check the keywords that best describe your interests and enroll as a reviewer. We will use the keywords to match submissions with reviewer interests. A reviewer survey, which collects information about reviewer expertise, will be emailed to GSD members and volunteer reviewers.