Call for Papers Appeals

The Call for Papers is an open call for submissions of proposed presentations at the ASHA Annual Convention. All papers that are complete and submitted by the published deadline, including any and all corresponding Conflict of Interest Disclosures, are peer-reviewed by at least three members of the Convention Program Committee responsible for the Topic Area selected for submission and rated on published criteria. It is important for submitters to correctly identify the appropriate Topic Area for submission and also to correctly determine whether the paper should be submitted as research or professional education.

All papers are rated solely on the content of the submission; past presentation history—or prior work not included in the submission—is not a factor in any review. Reviewers do not contact submitters or authors for further elaboration on their submission. Reviewers recuse themselves from review if there is a potential conflict of interest or if, for any reason, they feel they cannot review the paper impartially or knowledgeably. Topic chairs may accept or reject reviewers' decisions based on scores, uniqueness of content, session format and timing, and benefit to the overall programmatic goals of the Topic Area. Each topic has limited hours for scheduling, and, ultimately, the topic chair makes the decision on how to best develop the Topic Program.

There are instances when a high-scoring paper may not be accepted. For example, sometimes there are two or more high-scoring papers on a similar topic, a submission may mimic an invited session, or restrictions identified by the submitter on format type or timing may impact acceptance.

Submitters or authors who receive rejection notifications may e-mail a request for additional details about the decision to; the topic chair will respond with a rationale, which may include reviewer scores, comments, or other information as relevant.

Appeals Process

We do not consider appeals on issues related to the proposal content, but will consider appeals based on technical or administrative issues wherein a proposal was not fairly considered. These issues include, but are not limited to, a failure of the Call for Papers System (e.g., a form was completed on time, but a system error nullified the submission) or a reviewer’s failure to identify a potential conflict of interest.

Formal appeals follow the process outlined below.

  1. Submitter receives notification that paper was not accepted. Submitter sends an inquiry to referencing the proposal number as identified in the notification and requesting further details about the decision.
  2. Inquiry is forwarded to the appropriate topic chair for response. Topic chair reviews the full submission, scores, and reviewer comments and responds to inquiry. Topic chair may share detailed or paraphrased comments, scores of reviewers, cite a lack of information, or state other factors or rationale used in the decision.
    1. If submitter believes a technical or administrative issue was a factor in the paper review, they must respond to the topic chair, who will initiate an inquiry. ASHA staff will then research within the Call for Papers System the technical documentation of each step of the submission and review process and will report the details to the topic chair.
      • If no technical or administrative issues are uncovered, the decision remains as conveyed.
      • If a technical or administrative issue is uncovered, the topic chair may consider the new information and ask for additional review. (Again, substantive issues with proposal content or failure on the part of submitter to accurately submit the proposal in completeness to the correct topic, format, or session type are not considered technical issues.)
      • If, upon a further review based on the technical or administrative issue, the paper is ranked differently, the topic chair may make a decision to accept and schedule the paper.
    2. If no technical or administrative issues are uncovered, the decision of the topic chair stands and the appeal is closed.
    3. If an author or submitter is unsatisfied with the topic chair’s response after a second review, they may request that the appropriate Convention co-chair (audiology or speech-language pathology) provide further evaluation and rationale. The Convention co-chair, who may opt to speak with reviewers directly to delve deeper into any reasoning, considers the details of the request for exception in context of the overall schedule and ultimately makes a decision to support or reverse the decision of the topic chair. The decision of the Convention co-chair is final.

Questions about the ASHA Convention Call for Papers and/or appeals process may be sent to

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About ASHA

The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) is the national professional, scientific, and credentialing association for members and affiliates who are audiologists; speech-language pathologists; speech, language, and hearing scientists; audiology and speech-language pathology assistants; and students.

About the Convention

The ASHA Convention is one of the largest professional development events for audiologists; speech-language pathologists; speech, language, and hearing scientists; and speech-language pathology and audiology assistants. Bringing together approximately 15,000 attendees, the annual Convention offers more than 2,500 sessions eligible for ASHA continuing education credit covering the latest research, clinical skills, and techniques in communication sciences and disorders.

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