Call for Presentation Proposals

Spoken Words, Shared Stories

Courtyard Marriott  Prince George, BC  | September 30 – October 2, 2019


Present at British Columbia’s ONLY conference for museum, gallery, and heritage professionals!

This fall, the 2019 BC Museums Association Conference will be held on the traditional territory of the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation, whose name in the Dakelh language means “people of the confluence of two rivers”. Celebrate the role museums play in connecting people through language and story with this year’s theme, Spoken Words, Shared Stories. The theme acknowledges the importance of the International Year of Indigenous Languages, explores how museums can become involved in language revitalization, and allows for discussion on how our organizations use stories to communicate, educate, and encourage social interactions.

Why be a presenter?

The BC Museums Association annual conference gathers together professionals and volunteers in the museum, gallery, cultural centre and historic site community. Presenters have a unique opportunity to gain recognition and exchange ideas with over a hundred registrants from across BC, and will also receive a discounted conference registration rate if registered by the early-bird deadline of June 28, 2019.

Sessions can explore a range of topics, such as:

  • Language revitalization, storytelling, living culture, intangible cultural heritage and more
  • Social justice through exhibitions, education and programming
  • Engaging diverse audiences within museum, art gallery, and cultural centre practices
  • Practical topics related to core museum functions and non-profit management and governance

BCMA encourages proposals that:

  • Provide active, hands-on learning experiences. We encourage you to be innovative and think beyond standard presentation formats! Mount-making activities, hands-on conservation skills, arts education demonstrations are just a few ideas for how you might get conference delegates out of their seats.
  • Are relevant and tailored to small museums and the challenges and opportunities that they face.
  • Help our delegates go home with practical skills, ideas, strategies and perspectives to tackle challenges and opportunities at their museum, gallery or cultural centre. Remember that a majority of museums and cultural centres in B.C. operate with budgets of under $100,000 per year.
  • Highlight this year’s theme of Spoken Words, Shared Stories through practical language-based tools, learning opportunities and resources.
  • Explore best practices and/or innovations.
  • Build new connections with colleagues.
  • Share viewpoints, case studies and discussions on important issues affecting the sector.


Proposed sessions should be grounded in practice rather than theory, and focus on topics of interest to the museum, gallery, archive, library, history and heritage sectors.

  • Workshop (45 mins) – Active learning with dedicated time for hands-on participation.
  • Presentation (45 mins) – Panel presentations are acceptable but are limited to a maximum of 3 panelists. Allow for Q&A within this time frame.
  • Deep Dive (120 mins) – This is a longer time block to allow for deeper exploration of topics that may have a presentation and workshop element to them. Presenters are encouraged to consider how their presentation will align with our theme of Spoken Words, Shared Stories. As a reference, last year’s conference included an “Museums Educator’s Symposium” and a “Small Museums Symposium” that allowed for learning and dialogue in these specialized areas of museum practice.
  • Ask the Expert Session (120 mins total – participants rotate through 4-6 tables during this time) – You will host drop-in style roundtable discussions, demonstrations and mini-workshops in an area where you have specific expertise to share. Ask the Expert presenters do not have access to a projector or computer.

Important A/V and Technology Information and Guidelines:

Each meeting room will be supplied with the following AV:

  • Laptop Computer with sound for video
  • LCD Projector and screen
  • Microphone for presenter and microphone for panel
  • Flipchart with paper and markers

Each year’s conference includes dozens of speakers. In an effort to streamline administration, minimize technical issues and provide the best possible experience for delegates and presenters, we ask that our presenters adhere to these guidelines:

  • Presenters must use the laptop provided and cannot provide their own laptop.
  • Presenters must provide presentations in advance for upload. No USBs on site.
  • Presentations are accepted in PowerPoint format only. No other format is accepted. You may include video or audio in your presentation.
  • Presenters are responsible for supplying any materials or handouts associated with presentations.

Important Dates:

May 15, 2019 – Deadline for proposal submission.
May 27, 2019 – Notification of accepted proposals will be issued.
June 10, 2019 – Deadline for accepted presenters to confirm participation.
June 28, 2019 – Deadline to access discounted presenter registration rate for conference. After this date, regular registration fees apply.
August 29, 2019 – Deadline for presenters to submit their PowerPoint presentations to BCMA

Additional Important Information:

A $100 discount on conference registration will be provided to accepted presenters if registration is completed and paid for prior to the early bird registration deadline June 28, 2019. Presenters are responsible for their own transportation and accommodation. Presenter fees and/or honorariums are not provided.

We encourage all presenters to register for and attend the full conference. We do recognize that there are times when this is not possible due to time or financial constraints. Please get in touch with the BCMA office during the proposal process to discuss alternatives and arrangements.

For a pdf version of this call for proposals, click here.


We invite you to connect with us by phone 250-356-5694, or email to discuss ideas for proposals.

How to Submit Your Proposal:

Submission has been closed.

Check out this great resource from Museum Hack to help you with your conference session: 5 Tips for Designing a Great Conference Session