2023 Conference on Diversity, Equity, and Student Success

Session Formats

2023 DESS Conference Session Formats

Pre-conference Extended Strategy Session (4 hours; In-Person)

The pre-conference extended strategy session is designed to guide participants through the development process to create plans of action for significant work at the level of a course, program, or institution. Resources and templates will be provided to help participants strategize and structure their planning, and there will be opportunities for discussion and feedback. The extended strategy session will be held on Thursday, March 9 from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time with a one-hour lunch break from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time. The session will be capped at 50 participants.

Pre-conference Workshops (2 hours; In-Person and Virtual)

Pre-conference workshop sessions are designed to guide participants as they explore significant work at the level of a course, program, or institution. Presenters will present resources and templates to help participants structure their ideas and plans. There will be opportunities for discussion and feedback. Pre-conference workshops will be held on Thursday, March 9 from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time. Each workshop will be capped at 75 participants.

Roundtable Discussions (60 minutes; In-Person and Virtual)

Roundtable Discussions provide time for colleagues to examine timely and potentially provocative topics of similar interest through the iterative sharing of expertise and experiences. They provide an opportunity to work through issues, ideas, and challenges from multiple perspectives, engage in problem-solving, and brainstorm new ideas in a small group setting. Roundtable Discussion facilitators provide a short presentation on the background or context of the topic and assist the group in examining new ways of thinking about the topic and strategies for moving forward given the professional reality and expertise of each individual at the table. The facilitator's role is to kickstart small group conversations that then feed into a collective discussion of the question at hand.

Concurrent Workshops (75 minutes; In-Person and Virtual)

Concurrent workshops provide an interactive environment for participants to bridge theory and practice and to deeply examine, explore, and/or experience relevant theories and implementation strategies that can contribute to achievable and sustainable transformation in higher education. Participants will be engaged in reflection and discussion about work related, but not limited to, strategic reform to address DEI efforts and inequities in higher education as well as the privileges, the biases, and the false belief in a hierarchy of human value that are embedded in our systems.

Discussion Sessions (60 Minutes; In-Person and Virtual)

Concurrent discussion sessions provide an opportunity to explore current work, recent findings, or new perspectives and allow ample time and opportunities for discussion with and among participants.

Poster Sessions (60 minutes; In-Person and Virtual)

Poster presenters share visual models and representations of their work related, but not limited to, research findings; DEI course, program, and/or curricular or cocurricular designs; concept maps; diversity and equity assessment rubrics and feedback loops; faculty development, support, and reward programs and policies; frameworks for design thinking and strategic planning; and high-impact practices. The poster session provides an opportunity for presenters to talk with participants about how to apply the ideas and findings to their own work.

Lightning Talks (45 minutes; In-Person and Virtual)

Lightning talk presentations will be grouped by topics (4-5 per group) and presenters will have five minutes each to present an overview of emerging research, share promising strategies, and/or pose questions. Presenters can show a poster (in-person format) or share 3-5 slides (virtual format) during their talk. These sessions will invite feedback from participants and will take place during the poster sessions.

Unconference Sessions (30 minutes; In-Person)

Participants will have an opportunity to gather on their own and present a session based on the conference theme. Sign-up sheets for unconference sessions will be offered on the first day of the conference (Thursday, March 9) and held on Saturday, March 11.