2016 Call

Call for Papers and Panels

2016 Central States Communication Association (CSCA)
Annual Convention in Grand Rapids, Michigan
April 13-17, 2016


The Media Studies Interest Group (MSIG) invites submissions of competitive papers, thematic panels and original media on all aspects of media studies for the 2016 CSCA Convention. We seek to promote provocative scholarship on all forms of mass, social and interpersonal media. Possible areas of examination include media and culture, media effects, media technology, audience studies, producer studies, textual analyses and other studies of mediated communication. In addition, we are soliciting original and innovative ideas for special sessions, which are described below.

This year's theme is Foundation. As media scholars, our foundation manifests from numerous discourses and academic fields, as the field was born from sociology, psychology, anthropology, humanities, rhetoric, criticism, and more during the 20th Century. Now, in the 21st Century, this conference is our chance to examine our past to consider our present and to dream about and plan for our potential future. This theme invites members to consider the various questions, challenges, opportunities, and reflections that this consideration of our foundation invites.

Given the diversity of MSIG, you are invited to explore this idea, in all of its permutations, for CSCA 2016. The following are suggested questions and themes to consider when developing your paper or panel. This list is neither meant to be exhaustive nor prescriptive, just inspirational.

  • Why do media studies matter?
  • How do old media theories matter?
  • How does media studies research apply to the real world?
  • What is the difference between media studies and pop culture studies?
  • How do we teach media literacy skills, and why?
  • What are the canonical texts media studies scholars should know?
  • What is media studies as a field currently? What should it be moving forward?
  • What is the overlap between traditional media and new media studies?
  • What is new media studies currently? What should it be moving forward?
  • What questions have we definitively answered?
  • What is mass communication currently?
  • How applicable is the scholarship on traditional media to new media?
  • What is social media currently?
  • How far back is too far back when considering past scholarship?
  • Do we need new foundations for publishing scholarship?

Original research, multimedia work, discussions, themed panels, and debates are all encouraged. All submissions must be made electronically using Microsoft Word. Submissions are invited under the following three categories:

Papers: The Media Studies Interest Group is seeking cutting-edge research regarding all aspects of media studies, including: mass communication, mediated interpersonal communication, media technology, media and culture, media theory, media reception, or other studies of media and mass communication for the 2016 conference. We welcome scholars from all paradigms and methodologies who examine all forms of media with regard to audiences, texts, technologies, effects, producers, communities, and culture. Considering the theme of the conference, papers examining the foundation of paradigms, methodologies, discourse communities and pedagogies are especially welcome.

Papers can follow the current editions of APA, MLA, or Chicago styles. All submitted papers must be the original work of the author(s). Please send your submission to cscamsig@gmail.com as two Microsoft Word files, with the first file containing a title page with author name(s) and contact information and the second file containing the text of the paper. If the paper is solely student-authored, please type the word “STUDENT” on the title page. All author-identifiers should be removed from the second file (excluding previous scholarly works cited in the paper and listed in the references section). The e-mail subject line should include the abbreviation CSCA and the title of the paper.

For the sake of timely and thorough review, papers must be no longer than 25 pages of actual text written within accepted publishing guidelines (not including appendices, references/bibliographies, etc.). Papers not meeting these submission guidelines may not be distributed for review. All 2016 submissions must also include a Competitive Paper Submission Form submitted with the paper. This form is located on the CSCA home page at www.csca-net.org

Panels: The Media Studies Interest Group welcomes submissions of proposals for paper panels, roundtable discussions, spotlight panels, and debate panels exploring media studies. This year, the interest group specifically seeks panels or discussion sessions dealing with the conference theme of Foundation. Thus, we welcome any submissions that would, for example, spotlight any scholars who have made significant contributions over the years, or any discussions or debates on the identity or current state of media studies. We highly encourage panels with interactive and dialogic intentions.

Panels examining this conference theme should be sent to cscamsig@gmail.com as a Microsoft Word file (.doc or .rtf) with the abbreviation CSCA and the title of the paper in the subject line. Proposals need a title, brief abstract for the panel, for research-based panels - an abstract (no more than 75 words) for each project, a designated person in charge of the program, and names/contact information for each session participant (including whether or not the participants are CSCA members).

Panel proposals must also include either the 2016 Discussion Panel Paper Submission Form or the 2016 Paper Panel Submission Form, depending on the panel type. Both forms are available on the CSCA home page at www.csca-net.org

Original Media Submissions: The Media Studies Interest Group welcomes submissions of original traditional and new media that engage theory, pedagogy, or communicative phenomena. These submissions can include, but are not limited to, documentaries of all lengths, fictional narratives or non-narratives, public service announcements, new media texts, or other creative works of media. Such formats are appropriate for submission, especially those that include a focus on the theme of Foundation. For example, original submissions that in some way explore media studies concepts, theories, paradigms, research findings and significant contributions would be substantial contributions to this year’s conference.

The submission must include a pedagogical or theoretical rationale for the work (a rationale could be an accompanying full-length paper written for the project or a 2-4 page rationale written for the submission). We especially encourage student projects and/or student/faculty collaborations. Those interested in submitting should contact planner CarrieLynn D Reinhard cscamsig@gmail.com with a brief description of the media by September 15, 2015 to begin the submission process.

The Media Studies Interest Group presents three awards annually. The Samuel L. Becker Award is given for the top graduate student paper. The Becker Award includes an individual certificate and a cash award. At the annual business meeting, the Media Studies Interest Group also presents awards for top faculty paper and top original media submission.

Due to budget and access, the only technology that can be made available for your projects will be a multimedia projector and speakers that you can connect your laptop computers (or other equipment) to. There should be cables available for this, but there may not be Internet access readily available. Any technology requests must be made at the time of submission.

Submissions for all categories must be complete and submitted by October 3, 2015 at midnight (CST). Please note the earlier deadline for beginning the submission process of original media.

Send questions and submissions to the following contact and email address: CarrieLynn D. Reinhard (Dominican University) at creinhard@dom.edu.