The Medieval Institute at Western Michigan University invites proposals of sessions and of papers for the annual International Congress on Medieval Studies. We also welcome reservations of space for business meetings and receptions at the congress, and we are grateful for offers to preside over general sessions.

Organizers of approved sponsored and special sessions will find the Organizer Contract, a link to the online submission system, and instructions and information at For Session Organizers.

Session proposals

Proposals for sponsored and special sessions—including sessions of papers, panel discussions, roundtables, poster sessions, workshops, demonstrations, performances and film screenings—for the International Congress on Medieval Studies must be made by June 1 using our online submission system powered by Confex.

Those who organized sessions for the 2020 congress may re-propose them for 2021, if they so desire, with a guarantee of acceptance. As to speakers, it will be for the organizers of sessions (and the speakers themselves) to determine what shape those pre-approved sessions might take in 2021.

CONFEX logo.Required information includes the name and contact information for a single contact person for each session, the title of proposed session, an indication of format, and a description of the importance and/or timeliness of proposed session (100 words). Optional fields include descriptions of encouraged methodology or discourse (100 words) and plans for outreach (100 words), as well as keywords and—in the case of sponsored sessions—the naming of co-sponsoring organization(s).

Session proposal portal for the 2021 congress

In a break from past practice, each session proposal is now a separate submission. We now require a single contact person for each proposed session, but we no longer require a single contact person for each sponsoring organization.

We encourage organizers of Sponsored Sessions to consider pursuing co-sponsors for envisioned sessions. The Congress itself provides an excellent opportunity for the leadership of sponsoring organizations to seek connections with other organizations that might be interested in co-sponsoring a future session or future sessions.

The Program Committee considers the proposals in June, and would-be session organizers are informed of the committee's acceptance or rejection of sessions in July.

Paper proposals

Paper proposals for the International Congress on Medieval Studies will be accepted beginning in July (deadline: Sept. 15). The process for proposing papers and other contributions to congress sessions will be new for the 56th Congress (May 13-16, 2021) using an submission system powered by Confex.

Sponsored and special sessions may be closing or closed at any point along the time-line to the Sept. 15 deadline for paper proposals. The person proposing a paper who waits until the last minute may be very disappointed. Organizers of sponsored and special sessions are required to forward proposals that are not selected to the Program Committee, so that the papers can be considered for general sessions.

Notification of acceptance and rejection of papers considered for inclusion in general sessions (those organized by the Program Committee at Western Michigan University) is made by post in December.

Reservations for business meetings and receptions

Learned societies, associations, institutions, publishers and other vendors may hold business meetings or host receptions at the congress. Arrangements are made by submitting a meeting reservation (deadline: Oct. 1).

The Meeting Reservation Form for the 56th Congress (May 13-16, 2021) will be available in July.

Those who request beverage and/or food service are contacted by the assigned caterer after the congress schedule is finalized, and payment is required in advance of the congress.

Food and beverages (including, but not limited to, alcoholic beverages) consumed at congress events on the WMU campus must be provided by WMU Catering, Fetzer Center Catering, or the Medieval Institute. Food and beverages purchased from outside vendors may not be brought into congress meeting rooms in the Goldsworth Valley dormitories, the Bernhard Center, or the Fetzer Center at any time. Should food or drink purchased outside of the Fetzer Center be brought into the Fetzer Center, it will be confiscated and left at the front desk for pick up upon departure from the building.

Offers to preside for general sessions

The Program Committee gratefully accepts offers to preside over general sessions (deadline: Oct. 1). One does not need to be delivering a paper at the congress in order to preside over a general session.

The Offer to Preside Form for the 56th Congress (May 13-16, 2021) will be available in July.