One of the new activities that I tried this semester was to ask my MA and PhD students to submit their final papers to a (well-known, well-attended, international) conference. To do this, I aligned the requirements for the final paper to the requirements for the conference submission. The reasons for doing this are plenty: (a) authenticity isn’t just something we should pay lip-service to, (b) we require our students to present at a conference prior to graduating, so this activity allows them to fulfill two requirements at once, (c) this way, students can easily see that their work has implications beyond the confines of our classroom and university. And, while the process of conference submission is more important than the outcome, I can’t help but be content with the outcome shown below:
Congratulations to the students – I am looking forward to taking pictures of you presenting at the conference!