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From the 2018 Conference Chair

Thursday, April 27, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Linda Harklau
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After a very successful Portland 2017 conference chaired by Tim McNamara, it’s already time to start planning for 2018 in Chicago. Seven years have passed since AAAL last convened in Chicago and we’re excited to be heading back to this perennial favorite.

AAAL will once again be held March 24-27, 2018 at the Sheraton Grand (formerly the Sheraton Towers). The hotel is located right on the Chicago river just a few blocks away from the Magnificent Mile and the lakefront. The Art Institute of Chicago, Grant Park, and the Field Museum of Natural History are all less than a mile away, and restaurants for every taste and budget are within walking distance.

For the first time in several years, AAAL will meet back-to-back in the same city as TESOL, which will take place March 27-30.

In recent years AAAL has focused on developing more conference events for our growing graduate student membership. For 2018 we will continue this tradition, working closely with the AAAL Graduate Student Council to plan events including graduate student professional development sessions, newcomer sessions, focus groups, and a graduate student social on the evening of Friday, March 27th. This year we are pleased to introduce a new mentoring session between faculty and students. You may have participated in such sessions in other conferences, and we feel it will be a great addition to the AAAL conference. If you are interested in signing up as a faculty mentor or student mentee please contact us at

We also have an exciting roster of conference plenaries and invited colloquia lined up for the 2018 conference that reflect the wide-ranging research interests of our membership. Our scheduled plenary speakers, Ellen Bialystok, Jan Blommaert, Eric Friginal, Susan Goldin-Meadow, Kim Potowski, and Steven Thorne, will share their expertise with us on topics including the effects of multilingualism on the brain; the inter-relation of language and social structure; the structure and meaning of talk in the professions; the role of gesture in language and learning; the place of dual immersion education in U.S. schools; and design experiments in digital language learning. Invited colloquia organized by leading scholars will also provide state-of-the-art discussions of timely topics including refugee education; global hip hop, language, and identity; eye-tracking research; the role of context in study abroad language learning; and new trends in vocabulary research. In 2018 AAAL will also host three colloquia jointly organized with other professional associations: the North American Systemic Functional Linguistics Association (NASFLA), the International Language Testing Association (ILTA), and the International Pragmatics Association (IPrA).

The Call for Proposals is already live and the site will open for proposal submissions on June 1. The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, August 16, 2017 at 5pm (US Eastern Daylight Time). We look forward to receiving your proposal submissions. If you have any questions, please contact us at See you in Chicago!

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