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View model sample abstracts.


Click here to submit an abstract. (link not functional until June 1, 2012)


Deadlines for receipt of abstracts: Tuesday, 31 July 2012. Technical support for abstract submission will not be available after 5:00 p.m. EDT on 31 July.


All abstracts and completed Abstract Submission Forms (available on-line from the Annual Meeting site after June 1) must be submitted to the LSA website by the deadline. Late abstracts will not be considered, whatever the reason for the delay.


The Program Committee requires that the subject matter be linguistic, that the abstract not be submitted with malicious or scurrilous intent, and that the abstract be coherent and in accord with published specifications. In 2013, there will be no more than six (6) simultaneous sessions of regular papers in each time block. As in the past, there is no upper limit on the number of papers in any subarea. Each abstract will be reviewed by members of the Program Committee and by expert external reviewers. On the basis of the ratings assigned by the reviewers and their own collective judgment, the members of the Program Committee discuss the ratings and make decisions about acceptances and rejections. The Program Committee then meets to assemble the final program, arrange each paper and poster session, and select session chairs.


General Requirements


  1. Abstracts for 20-minute papers and for posters must be submitted electronically and must be accompanied by a completed Abstract Submittal Form (available on-line after June 1) to be eligible for review.
  2. The submitting author must be a member of the Linguistic Society. Nonmembers may join here.
  3. Any member may submit one single-author abstract. There is not a limit on the number of co-authored abstracts. An organized session paper or poster counts as a multi-author abstract submission.
  4. Authors are expected to present their own papers and posters.
  5. After an abstract has been submitted, no changes of author, affiliation, title, or wording of the abstract, other than those due to typographical errors, are permitted.
  6. Papers and posters must be delivered as projected in the abstract or represent bona fide developments of the same research.
  7. Authors should not submit abstracts for research that has already been presented at other major conferences or which has been published in a journal, as a book chapter, or in conference proceedings.
  8. Presenters must pre-register for the meeting.


Abstract Format Guidelines


  1. Abstracts must be submitted in PDF format.
  2. An abstract, including examples, if needed, must be no more than 500 words and no more than one 8 1/2 inch by 11 inch page in length, in type no smaller than 10 point and preferably 12 point; margins should be at least .5 inches on all sides. References should be included on a second page. Abstracts exceeding the word or page length limit or in type smaller than 10 point will be rejected without being evaluated. Please indicate the number of words at the bottom of the abstract.
  3. Your name should only appear on the Abstract Submittal Form. If you identify yourself in any way on the abstract (e.g. "In Smith (1992)...I"), the abstract will be rejected without being evaluated. In addition, be sure to anonymize your .pdf document by clicking on "File," then "Properties," removing your name if it appears in the "Author" line, and resaving before uploading it.
  4. Abstracts that do not conform to the format guidelines will not be considered.
  5. A short abstract, intended for publication in the Meeting Handbook, will be requested from all authors of accepted papers and posters. The title and authors must be the same as those in the originally submitted abstract. Specific instructions for the transmittal of this abstract will be included in the acceptance letters. These instructions, including the stated deadlines, must be observed or the paper or poster will be withdrawn from the program.


Abstract Contents


Many abstracts are rejected because they omit crucial information rather than because of errors in what they include. Authors may wish to consult the abstract models prepared by the Program Committee. A suggested outline for abstracts is as follows:


  1. Choose a title that clearly indicates the topic of the research and is not more than one 7-inch typed line. Note that your choice of title has considerable influence on how your paper or poster is grouped with others to form thematically coherent sessions. A clear relationship between the title and content of your abstract will help ensure it is assigned to an appropriate session, should it be selected for presentation.
  2. State the problem or research question raised by prior work, with specific reference to relevant prior research.
  3. State the main point or argument of the proposed presentation.
  4. Regardless of the subfield, cite sufficient data, and explain why and how they support the main point or argument. When examples are in languages other than English, provide word-by-word glosses and underline the portions of the examples which are critical to the argument. Explain abbreviations at their first occurrence.
  5. If your research presents the results of experiments, but collection of results is not yet complete, then report what results you've already obtained in sufficient detail that your abstract may be evaluated. Also indicate explicitly the nature of the experimental design and the specific hypothesis tested.
  6. State the relevance of your ideas to past work or to the future development of the field. Describe analyses in as much detail as possible. Avoid saying in effect "a solution to this problem will be presented". If you are taking a stand on a controversial issue, summarize the arguments that led you to your position.
  7. State the contribution to linguistic research made by the analysis. 8. While citation in the text of the relevant literature is essential, a separate list of references at the end of the abstract is generally unnecessary.
  8. When you submit your abstract to the website, please identify a primary field on the basis of the abstract's general topic area, and use the secondary field to indicate methodology or a secondary topic. For example, a paper or poster about the production of relative clauses could have "syntax" as its primary field, and "psycholinguistics" as the secondary field. This will make it easier to assign your abstract to appropriate reviewers.


Categories of Presentations


Members submitting abstracts of poster presentations and 20-minute papers should follow the instructions for abstract format and content carefully. Submissions in these two categories will be reviewed anonymously.


Note that members may submit an abstract as (1) a paper ("20 min"), (2) a poster ("poster"), or (3) a paper or a poster ("20 min OR poster"). Submission type information is not accessible during the review process, to ensure that all abstracts are evaluated strictly according to content and not according to type of presentation.


Poster Sessions


Depending on subject and/or content, it may be more appropriate to submit an abstract to the poster session for visual presentation rather than to a 20-minute paper session. In general, the sorts of papers which are most effective as posters are those in which the major conclusions become evident from the thoughtful examination of charts and graphs, rather than those which require the audience to follow a sustained chain of verbal argumentation. Therefore, authors will want to make points in narrative form as brief as possible. The poster paper is able to "stand alone", that is, be understandable even if the author is not present, and does not require audiovisual support.


Posters will be assigned to specific 90-minute sessions during which submitters are expected to be present, but may be left on display throughout the day during the day they are presented. In addition, the 2013 meeting will feature special "Plenary Poster Sessions" on Friday and Saturday from 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM, to showcase the increasingly common research modalities which are optimally adapted for presentation as a poster.


LSA Poster FAQs


20-Minute Papers


The bulk of the program will consist of 20-minute papers, with 10 minutes for discussion of each paper.


Guidelines for Giving an LSA Paper