Language and Social Interaction Division

Conference Call for Papers


Gonen Dori-Hacohen, Vice-Chair

University of Massachusetts, Amherst, 01003

About the LSI Division: Language and Social Interaction (LSI) research is focused on the study of language use, discourse, and interaction. The LSI Division welcomes submissions about the social uses of language in various contexts of human interaction. The range of research perspectives found within the Division includes but is not limited to: discourse analysis, ethnography of communication, conversation analysis, critical discourse analysis, pragmatics, sociolinguistics, semiotics, embodied communication, social constructionism, and social psychology of language. Theoretical, empirical, critical, and practical works are welcomed, using qualitative or quantitative methodologies. Most LSI work includes some empirical analysis of situated discourse. 

2020 Convention Theme

The International Communication Association’s 70th annual conference will advance the theme “Engaging the Essential Work of Care: Communication, Connectedness, and Social Justice.” In the spirit of the convention theme, ICA heavily encourages presentations, panels, and Blue Sky Workshops that discuss one or all these notions.

Submissions to LSI

The Division will consider the following submission types this year: (1) Papers and Extended Abstracts, (2) Panels, (3) Research Escalator Abstracts, and (4) Posters.

COVID-19 Disclaimer: As you read, the conference is planned to be a hybrid conference, online and physical in Denver, CO, US. PLEASE indicate how likely you are to participate in the physical conference if it takes place. Write that down in your comments, along other comments you have for the planners. These comments are not part of the review process, and they can help planning the conference if your submission is accepted.

1. Papers and Extended Abstracts

Individual paper authors should submit either a full paper (~25 pages, ~8000 words) or a well-developed extended abstract similar to a conference-presentation length paper (1500-3000 words). All paper submissions (full papers and extended abstracts) will be judged together. However, only full papers will be considered for the Top Paper and Top Student Paper Awards. Extended abstracts should, at a minimum, include a rationale/background, description of methods (if appropriate), and at least some initial analysis (as appropriate). 

Note: Papers and extended abstracts will typically be programmed as panels (3-5 presentations). However, high-density panels (6+ presentations) and poster sessions (posters) allow us to accept more submissions. Indicate with your submission whether you are willing or not to present your paper in a particular format (particularly where this may make the difference between accepting and not accepting your paper). Do not submit any papers that have already been submitted to other divisions, accepted for publication, or published. 

Note: Any extended abstracts submitted to the Division can be programmed in the LSI Research Escalator Session (see below). Extended abstracts scheduled for the Research Escalator are only presented in that session. If you do not wish to have your abstract programmed in the Research Escalator, please indicate that preference, and the rationale for your preference, at the time of submission.

2. Panels (Discussion/Roundtable Sessions)

Panels may but need not involve formal paper presentations. For example, they may involve short talks on a single theme, followed by interaction with the audience. Panels are also appropriate forums as ‘high-density’ sessions or workshops. Panel proposals should include a title, 150-word abstract, 400-word rationale for the panel, and abstracts from each panelist (or at least a list of participants) if appropriate. Because the LSI Division accepts extended abstracts, higher-ranking panel proposals should be more innovative than a collection of abstracts on the same topic. Respondents are customary but not required.

Note: panel proposals should

3. Research Escalator Session

The Research Escalator is an opportunity for less experienced researchers (particularly graduate students and early career faculty) to discuss and get feedback from more veteran scholars about a paper-in-progress to make the paper ready for submission to a conference or journal. Those interested in participating in such a session should submit extended abstracts (see criteria for extended abstracts above). If accepted, participants are expected to send the full paper to the scholar(s) assigned to their paper no later than six weeks before the convention. 6-8 participants will present their projects in a 2-3 minutes-long PowerPoint presentation. Then, submitters meet with their assigned scholars in one-on-one mentorship meetings to discuss their feedback on their manuscripts (audience members are welcome and encouraged to attend these conversations as well). At the end of the session, all regroup, and submitters give a short “recap” of new directions/goals as well as highlight the main points they took away from their mentorship sessions.

Note: Veteran scholars are not required to (1) read full papers that exceed the ~8000-word length limit, and to (2) provide submitters any feedback on their full papers before the research escalator session. 

4. Posters

Submitters of individual papers and extended abstracts should indicate whether they are willing to present their work as a poster session. The LSI Division encourages all submitters whose work features a strong visual component (e.g., screenshots from video data, photographs from the field, etc.) to consider presenting posters. (For a useful approach to poster design, see this article: .) 

Note: Any accepted submission to LSI can be designated as a poster presentation. If you do not wish to have your paper programmed as a poster, please indicate that preference, and the rationale for your preference, at the time of submission. Only full paper submissions will be considered for the LSI Top Poster Award. 

Submission Rules

Please read the ICA submission rules carefully for information about preparing your document and de-identifying authors. You may submit more than one submission to LSI, however, only one first-authored paper will be accepted for presentation in this Division.

Travel Grants 

At the LSI Division, we do our best to support graduate students, contingent or part-time faculty, and early career faculty between jobs with travel grants. Once your paper is accepted, please immediately send an email to the program planner listed above with a statement of interest. In years when the Division receives large amounts of requests for travel funding, we may ask attendees to submit a formal application for travel funding to the Division, and we may not be able to fulfill all requests. You will need to be a member of the LSI Division and attend the business meeting to receive the travel grant.

Additionally, conference attendees are also encouraged to apply for ICA Travel Funds. Requests for these funds must be submitted directly to the ICA (as opposed to the Division). The ICA privileges travel funding applications from students or faculty who travel from United Nations-defined “B” or “C” soft-currency countries and awards funds on a priority basis.

Volunteer to Review

When you submit your paper, please check the option to volunteer to serve as a reviewer. The Division expects that all faculty submitters volunteer to serve in this role. This ensures that we can complete reviews in a rigorous and timely manner, without overburdening reviewers.  


The submission site goes online in September ?. The deadline for paper submissions is ??:?? Eastern Standard Time on November 1. On January 16, the ICA office notifies all submitters by email of acceptance, disqualification, or rejection. Acceptance emails include mention of who can apply for travel support, a link to the online form for applying for travel support, and mention of the 1 March deadline to apply. Hotel rooms also become available on March 1.


The LSI Division confers top paper awards on four papers (including one student paper) based on rankings resulting from the review process. Only full-length papers will be considered for division awards. Awardees receive a certificate, and the top student paper awardee receives a conference fee waiver and a small cash prize.


You are welcome to contact Gonen Dori-Hacohen ( with any questions regarding this call and the conference submission process.