Call for Sessions for the 2007 Convention

National Communication Association

Undergraduate College and University Section

Chicago, Illinois

November 15-18, 2007


Deadline for submissions is Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Convention Theme: Communicating Worldviews: Faith-Intellect-Ethics


Communicating Worldview: Faith-Intellect-Ethics is the theme of the 2007 NCA Convention in Chicago.  This theme invites vigorous inquiry, dialogue, and debate on a wide range of questions and issues that can bring to light the ways in which communication creates the webs of belief and meaning to which human beings become attached.


Building on innovations introduced in San Antonio, the convention planners see to make the NCA 2007 meeting a site of connection and action by promoting discussion of a broad array of faith-oriented, intellectual, and ethics issues and discourses that cut across the diverse interests of NCA’s units.  We anticipate a convention that will explore the boundaries that traditionally separate faith, intellect, and ethics as well as the pressure points at which they converge.  The inclusion of the term “ faith” is intended to be inclusive of, but not limited to, the domain of religion.  We encourage metaphorical, creative, and heuristic extensions and conceptions of what faith can mean.  Rather than confining “faith” to a single meaning, we invite multiple conceptions and interpretations of fait that includes ideas of trust or fidelity to a promise or conviction, to confidence and reliance, to sincerity and honesty, and to loyalty to one’s beliefs.  For example, one can have faith in the importance of the teaching, scholarship, methodologies, and creative activities of one’s discipline-to believe in its significance (or not) –or can lose faith in one’s work or purpose as in cases of burnout.


The convention theme is intended to inspire creative, timely, and innovative programs and panels subsumed under a broad conception of faith-intellect-ethics. Please view the NCA website at to view the most up-to-date complete call for papers, panels, session and/or programs after December 15, 2006.  Important details such as submission requirements and deadlines will be provided in more depth.


There are several types of sessions for NCA 2007.  They include:


Plenary/Spotlight Sessions:  These sessions highlight convention theme and/or other issues critical to the interests of the discipline. Members are urged to seek highly innovative ideas and high profile participants from inside and outside the discipline. Please note that these sessions do not count towards the UCUS quota of sessions.


Communication at the End of Life Series:  Given the convention theme, NCA intends to spotlight three or four special sessions that focus on communication at the end of the life.   Panel proposals for the End of Life Series should be submitted directly to Dr. Carolyn Ellis, Department of Communication, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida 33620 at 


Scholar-to-Scholar: Interactive Media Formats:  These sessions will continue to be a high priority for the 2007 NCA Convention.  These spotlighted sessions will feature “wandering scholars” to engage research participants and stimulate discussion.”  The Scholar-to-Scholar sessions will showcase alternative forms of presentations, and promote one-on-one interaction with “neighborhoods of knowledge.”  In the past, participants relied primarily upon posters to convey research findings.  In this updated format, approximately 150 participants will use multiple formats such as video, interactive media, slide shows, and experiential activities to represent their scholarship.  Proposal may be submitted to UCUS for review. Upon recommendation of the reviewers, proposals will be forwarded to the Scholar-to-Scholar Session Planner.  Scholar-to-Scholar proposals will be scheduled by the Scholar-to-Scholar Session planner only.  Designated wandering scholars will tour the Scholar-to-Scholar sessions and provide feedback.  Outstanding Scholar-to-Scholar presentations will be recognized.


Specifically for UCUS SUBMISSIONS:


NOTE:  Each and every panel and/or paper submissions needs to include a detailed abstract.  Submissions without an abstract are less likely to be considered as reviewers are unable to discern enough about the panel/paper idea and how it fits with the UCUS vision or the convention theme.


Competitive Papers: submission procedure will remain the same as last year. Papers may include research reports, theoretical developments or critiques, critical analysis, and in some cases, work in progress.


Competitive Panels: New for this year is two types of panels that members may submit for review:


  1. Common Theme Paper Presentations:  A group of panelist with titled presentations centered on a common theme.  A submission for this type of panel requires a completed rationale with individual detailed abstract for each presentation/paper. It is this rationale and the abstracts that the reviewers will consider when evaluating this type of panel.


2.   Roundtables: A group of panelist who discuss a specific topic that is described in an abstract (also printed in the convention program).  These panels do not title their presentations.  For this type of panel, submitters may use the same text for both the abstract and the rationale, if they do not wish to create a separate rationale.  It is the rationale that the reviewers will consider when evaluating this type of panel.  To encourage interactions among panelists and with the audience members, rooms in which roundtables will be held will be set up with an inner circle and additional empty seats in the circle for audience members to join the circle during discussion of this topic. For more information about submitting a roundtable proposal, please refer to the NCA general Call at after December 15, 2006.

Members are strongly encouraged to submit sessions that involve innovative formats, especially those with high-density participation and sessions emphasizing dialogue and interaction among participants and audience members.  The goal is to involve more participants using fewer sessions.


During the UCUS and Small College business meetings at NCA in San Antonio, participants shared ideas for session submission.  These ideas are printed below along with the person to contact and their email.  Communicate with them directly if you are interested in participating in a particular session.  You also are encouraged to develop your own session topics, secure participants and submit the session in the usual way.


If you have questions contact Nancy Burroughs, UCUS Vice Chair at California State University at (209) 667-3271 or Please do not call the national program planning office, as they prefer you to call or e-mail the section planner.







Undergraduate College and University Section Showcasing Session.

Goal: To increase visibility of the Section, and to recruit new members. The First Vice

President could co-sponsor the session so it would not be counted in our allotment of

program slots.

Contact: Steve Coffman, (MSU-Billings),


Faith, Intellect and Ethics: Issues and Possibilities Confronting the Micro-


Roundtable discussion focusing on the notion that we need faith in the issues

confronting departments.

Contact: Steve Coffman, (MSU-Billings) and David

Price (Iowa Wesleyan),


Finding Faith in the Failing Student – Advising and teaching challenges when dealing with students who are not prepared for college level work or who are failing courses.

Contact: David C. Price, Iowa Wesleyan College,


Challenges for Small Program Chairs – The challenges and unique nature of small undergraduate communication program or department leaders. Ideas for presenters might include:

Expectations of a Chair from the President or Provost (suggestions of communication faculty that are now presidents/provosts and could be invited to participate are welcomed);

Leadership ideas for small college program chairs from an Academic Dean (suggestions of communication faculty who are now deans and could be invited to participate are welcomed);

Lessons learned in leading a small program from a former or current chair

Challenges in leading a small program from a new or current chair

Expectations of a chair from communication faculty in a small department

Contact: David C. Price, Iowa Wesleyan College,


Faith in the Intellect of the Edsel Student. How can we more effectively teach and advise underprepared students so they don’t go by the wayside (like the Edsel!)? Faculty, are often expected to “bend over backwards” to help retain students.

Contact: David Price, Iowa Wesleyan College,


Ethical Reconciliation. How do students and faculty, with such differences in experience and perception, negotiate ethical systems within the classroom?

Contact: George Wharton, Curry College,


Faith in the Classroom. Some faculty avoid ethics discussions because it often deals with difficult issues.  What can faculty do to foster helpful conversations about faith in the classroom? How do we encourage useful conversations about faith?

Contact: John Ludlum, Otterbein College,


Atheists and Agnostics Have Ethics, Too. They have a core belief system that is defensible in the classroom. This panel suggests that one doesn’t have to be Christian to be ethical.

Contact: Barbara Burke, University of Minnesota, Morris,


How do Values Inform Our Teaching? Should faculty make their values transparent? How? Does doing so compromise or enhance the quality of students´ learning? How do we distinguish and help students distinguish thought-provoking pedagogy from indoctrination? Because different courses may lend themselves to different approaches to either perspective on this issue, case studies and specific techniques used in different courses may serve as an organizing basis for this panel.

Contact: Alice Araujo, Mary Baldwin College,


Global Diversity and Religion-Based Education. How can those two principles co-exist? At the institutional level, what does it mean to be welcoming those who are Christians and those who are not? Is cultural difference not welcomed? Often, mission, pedagogy, and inclusion within the institution do not value other cultures´ views. Melinda Tilton (MSU Billings) suggested considering the invitational rhetoric approach as a means of  promoting peaceful co-existence.

Contact: Don Rice, Concordia College,


Faith, Intellect and Ethics: Preparing Students for the Job Market. What kind of ethical training, if any, do students need to get a job? Are faculty responsible for students´ ethical development? How can we emphasize the importance of ethics in business? How do questions of faith and ethics play out in the workplace and in job interviews? Employers assume that colleges prepare students to enter the job market with a strong sense of ethics. Can we align a sense of ethics with different job areas (e.g. public relations)? What about ethics of the basic course - do students start learning ethics there?

Contact: None listed. If you’re interested, please send an email to members.


Faith, intellect and ethics: The value of small colleges. Focus on small, faith-based small college campuses.

Contact: Jackie Schmidt, John Carroll University,



Student Preparation. Many students cannot easily synthesize or integrate concepts. There is little, if any, student reflection on course concepts. How can we teach students to write critically? How do we teach students to engage in research? What about ethics in a Research Methods course?

Contact: Elenie Opffer, Regis,


Ethical Feedback and Student Entitlement. Students often have the perception that they are entitled to a good grade. Yet they also need to understand their responsibility in the learning process. Faculty in small colleges are often expected to nurture students and even to take on a parental role. How do we meet those expectations without compromising our ethical responsibilities of providing accurate feedback about the quality of students´ work?

Contact: George Wharton,


How do Faculty Reconcile Faith and Intellect in their Careers? We are constantly faced with sometimes unethical administrative politics. How do we maintain the ethical integrity of who we are? Is there a disciplinary intellect, faith and ethic? What issues do faculty face? How do faculty maintain faith, intellect and ethics in what they do?

Contact: Nancy Burroughs, CSU Stanislaus,


Is There a Need for Department Chair Training? What challenges do they have? Are they more than glorified secretaries (with responsibility for scheduling, advising, etc.). How does small college leadership and organizational structure influence the perception of the department as intellectual and ethical?

Contact: David Price, Iowa Wesleyan College,