Individual Conference Calls

Proposals for the 2023 NCFR Conference are sought from scholars and practitioners from across all disciplines and career levels who study or work with families. You may submit multiple proposals as a first author. There is no submission fee.

Choose from among 13 individual calls, as listed below.

Before you submit a proposal, please download and read through the full call for proposals for instructions on conference presentation formats, criteria, topics, and more.

Ready to submit? Start your proposal here.

Advancing Family Science

Advancing Family Science (AFS)

Silvia Bartolic, Chair

The AFS Section seeks to expand, strengthen, and enhance the Family Science discipline and profession. In particular, the AFS Section is concerned with issues related to the strength and sustainability of Family Science programs, including marketing and recruiting for Family Science programs; innovative and effective teaching strategies for Family Sciences courses including the development, delivery, and evaluation of Family Science curricula; best practices for administrators of Family Science programs; ethical issues in the practice of Family Science; and the state of Family Science as a discipline.

The section welcomes conference proposals which address the 2023 theme, The Way We are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic. More specifically, the section is interested in innovative proposals which exemplify the conference theme and focus on examining family and community in areas germane to the section. Presenters might consider proposals which address new or continuing challenges in preparing students to work with families affected by the syndemic (the occurrence of multiple epidemics that interact with one another and share common societal drivers), or new ways to promote the Family Science discipline in a time of disruption.

Examples of topics related to the conference theme might include, but are not limited to:

  • New outreach and marketing approaches to support NCFR’s efforts to increase the visibility Family Science.
  • Innovation in recruitment and retention of students in Family Science.
  • New approaches in communicating about Family Science with the public.
  • How can Family Science illuminate challenges and aid families at the center of the syndemic? How we can leverage innovative pedagogical approaches to enhance student outcomes? How do we know we have made an impact? How must our pedagogy change to address “the way we are now”?
  • New paradigms and/or perspectives when working with families. How can we utilize these perspectives to be more effective and inclusive in our work?? How has the work of faculty expanded and/or transformed to meet the changing needs of families?
  • How to expand the Family Science discipline both locally and globally through community  engaged learning and/or service learning and study abroad programs.


In addition to the many other conference proposal formats, we will again feature Resource Exchange Roundtables. See special instructions for this format in the Call for Proposals PDF.

Proposals focusing on theory development, research methodology, and specific issues confronted by families do not fall within the focus of the AFS Section and would be a more appropriate fit for another section.

We encourage submissions of proposals from all Family Science professionals, including administrators, educators, practitioners, and students. NCFR undergraduate and graduate student members who serve as first authors of the accepted proposals are eligible for the Wesley Burr Student Paper Award, which includes a plaque and cash award. Submissions are also encouraged for the Outstanding Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) Award, the Felix Berardo Award for Mentoring, the AFS Legacy Award, the Outstanding Administrator Award, and the Emerging Mentor/ Teacher Award. Applicants must be members of the AFS Section.

Contact: Silvia Bartolic, Department of Sociology, University of British Columbia; email: [email protected]


Family and Community Education

Family and Community Education (FCE)

Sarah Kuborn, Chair-Elect

The FCE Section supports and unites the members of NCFR who are involved with and interested in the translation of research into effective community education and enrichment for individuals, couples, and families.

The 2023 conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, offers an opportunity to submit proposals that address components of how families and communities have been and continue to be impacted by public health and societal influences related to the multiple pandemics that are taking place in the wake of COVID-19. Proposals for this section may provide dialogue and share innovative evidence-informed resources about methods, materials, programs, and processes for enriching and improving the lives of individuals, couples, and families across the life courses.

We are interested in proposals that encourage researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to engage with each other to better understand the dynamic nature of family life in ways that are unique, inclusive, and innovative. Fitting with the 2023 conference goals, proposals may include, but are not limited to, programmatic practices, community engagement and collaboration strategies, and tactics that uniquely address families from diverse and global perspectives. Various topics may include those surrounding the social, economic, cultural, and health concerns facing families today.

Examples of presentation topics may include:

  • new and innovative ways of delivering Family Life Education content and programming;
  • examining critical gaps in community education programming and training that have yet to be addressed (e.g., vicarious trauma, practitioner voices);
  • the effective use of innovative online technologies to inform myriad topics of family functioning, well-being and social justice issues;
  • fresh, new perspectives in providing community education programming which address unique needs of families and individuals regionally and internationally;
  • the challenges and unforeseen consequences for learners in a virtual community education environment;
  • unique ways of addressing sustainability for community programming (i.e., examining the evidence of various programs that address specific family concerns);
  • effective and innovative Family Life Education practices for diverse populations during times of crisis, conflict, and change; and
  • cutting-edge community education programs that connect to multiple political and philosophical audiences.


As has been done at previous conferences, the Advancing Family Science and Family and Community Education Sections will again feature Resource Exchange Roundtables. Highlighting the role of practice as integral to Family Science, we are looking for tangible resources from both applied settings and basic research to strengthen the work of applied researchers, extension specialists, faculty, Family Life Educators, practitioners, and more that helps to contribute to the conference theme. See specific instructions for this format in the Call for Proposals PDF.

We encourage proposals from established scholars, practitioners, new professionals, and students. All FCE student members who submit a proposal as first author will be considered for the Student Proposal Award, which includes a cash award and $100 towards the Annual Conference registration fee.

Contact: Sarah Kuborn, Department of Child and Family Studies, Southeast Missouri State University; email: [email protected]

AFS and FCE Resource Exchange Roundtables
Special Instructions


In addition to all conference proposal formats, the Advancing Family Science and Family and Community Education Sections will again feature Resource Exchange Roundtables.
The Resource Exchange Roundtables are an interactive opportunity to demonstrate an educational, administrative, enrichment, or pedagogical (e.g., specific curricula or teaching technique) resource that has been particularly useful when working with students, families, professionals, or other populations. An overview is given by the leader who then facilitates active discussion about the topic.

It is expected that presenters provide a tangible resource to participants. Examples of resources include detailed assignment instructions or rubric; an example of a completed student project (must include a statement of permission to use); or a list of useful topical online resources. An example of the specific resource that will be provided to roundtable attendees must be included with the proposal.

Please note: Resource Exchange Roundtable proposal submissions go through the normal proposal review and evaluation process; those accepted for the conference program are peer-reviewed.

Families and Health

Families and Health (FH)

Jeremy Yorgason, Chair

The FH Section promotes the health and well-being of all families and their members through interdisciplinary practice, research, education, and policies related to family health.

FH members collectively work across disciplines to improve the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities. We view health holistically and on a continuum that encompasses a variety of wellness and disease states.

This year’s conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, fits well with our section, and we encourage proposals to consider ways that families have responded to and been impacted by the interplay of multiple health threats and challenging social environments in recent years.

The 2023 theme lends well to proposals that emphasize adaptation and resilience in the face of great challenges. We welcome innovative proposal submissions that deepen members’ understanding of strategies to promote health and well-being and lessen health disparities. We encourage the submission of proposals related to the conference theme or any aspect of families and health.

Topics may include any of the following as they relate to couple and family relationships:

  • COVID-19 or aspects of the pandemic
  • health behaviors (e.g., exercise, sleep, nutrition)
  • chronic conditions (physical and mental health)
  • health-related interventions and outcomes-based research
  • public health prevention (e.g., community health workers, nursing)
  • health and wellness issues across the life course (birth to death)
  • relational influences on health (e.g., siblings, partners, aging parents)
  • community influences on health (e.g., education, services and supports through schools, health care centers, community mental health centers, military, churches, parks and recreation centers)
  • effects of trauma, violence, conflict, disability, illness, caregiving, loss, sleep, substance abuse, risk behaviors, and more on family health and well-being


Established scholars, new professionals, and students are encouraged to submit proposals.

Each year, FH acknowledges outstanding student and professional papers, and student posters, with honors that include plaques or certificates, and monetary awards.

Contact: Jeremy Yorgason, School of Family Life, Brigham Young University; email: jeremy_yorgason@byu


Family Policy

Family Policy (FP)

Anthony Ferraro, Chair

The primary mission of the FP Section is to inform and examine the influence of policy on all aspects of family life, including the ways in which policies facilitate and/or hinder family well-being across diverse families and the lifespan. Policies influence the functioning, adaptation, coping, and health of individuals, families, and communities. We as researchers, educators, practitioners, and leaders can inform policy matters in the academy, at state, national, and global levels. Our section members often place an emphasis on intersectionality and the recognition that no policy-related decision occurs in isolation, nor exists outside of the sociohistorical context in which we are immersed. This year’s conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, asks us to consider family experiences in the constantly evolving world in which we are embedded.

We are especially eager to receive proposals that consider how evolving contexts or phenomena, which are emerging through the syndemic, support, inhibit, or otherwise impact families. Further, implications that can speak to the intentional or unintentional consequences of laws, policies, and programs that have contributed to family adversity or that have compounded the experiences of people from diverse, underserved, or vulnerable populations, and create disparities or inequities. Even if your research does not explicitly address policy, we are looking for research that can inform specific and explicit implications for promoting, enhancing, restructuring, or dismantling policies that impact families. Whether you study health, gender, racial or ethnic disparities, child welfare, divorce or remarriage, family transitions, homelessness, food insecurity, incarcerated families, child well-being, families with disabilities, parent or relational education, social injustice or some other facet of family life, the impact of your work can probably draw implications for how policymakers, community leaders, coalitions, or even those mobilizing grassroot efforts can help to make positive change within their communities.

Topics may include (but are not limited to):

  • discourse about perceptions surrounding social welfare, diversity and inclusion, health care, climate change, or reproductive rights, including the roles of media, educators, and elected officials in driving these conversations;
  • recommendations or lessons from the field for practitioners and other professionals about how to navigate constantly changing or evolving local, state, or federal policies;
  • experiences within the criminal justice system, justice reform, or the experience of families experiencing incarceration;
  • educational policies and practices from early childhood settings to higher education;
  • drivers of transition or changes in family structure due to systemic racism, oppression, changing economic conditions, or experiences with COVID-19;
  • evaluation efforts that examine the effectiveness of family, couple, parenting, or community programs and how those efforts can fulfill emerging community needs;
  • identification of leverage points that could help to build individual and family resilience or antecedents of resilience, across complex family situations (e.g., military families, divorcing or separating families, repartnering families, families involved in the foster system);
  • the short- and long-term impacts of trauma, stress, and other contextual or environmental factors on families; and
  • expansion of theories, frameworks, or new and innovative empirical models that allow us to better understand the experiences, needs, and/or gaps in our current policies to meet the needs of a diverse and ever-changing population.

The FP Section would also like to encourage creativity, such as symposia that combine the experiences and knowledge of policy researchers or administrators, practitioners, people or families with lived experience, and/or family researchers or scientists. Feel free to consult with the section chair (contact below) if you have questions or would like to discuss options prior to submission. If you are putting together a more innovative approach, a consultation is recommended to ensure that the proposal meets submission guidelines.

Research designs do not need to be embedded in or emerge strictly from policy, however, authors and presenters should devote attention to the policy implications of their work. If your work considers how to strengthen, protect, or support family functions such as parenting, partnering, family formation, economic stability, or caregiving-related issues, then you are doing work which aligns with core areas of family policy and we welcome your submissions. If you are not sure how your work aligns with policy, get in touch! FP officers are happy to support or provide presenters with guidance on shaping the policy-relevant content of your proposal.

Contact: Anthony Ferraro, Department of Applied Human Sciences, Kansas State University; email: [email protected]

Family Therapy

Family Therapy (FT)

Nathan Hardy, Chair

The FT Section unites members who share common interests, goals, and purposes in marital and family therapy. The section improves the practice of marital and family therapy through the promotion of: a) open dialogue between clinicians and researchers relative to marital and family therapy theories, research, practice and training; b) the integration of theory, research and practice; and c) effective, efficient and ethical practice methods.

The theme of the 2023 conference, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, invites us to consider ways families have been susceptible to and uniquely impacted by the many synergistic layers of harm happening across society (COVID-19, political polarization, war, economic insecurity, etc.). We hope that the 2023 conference theme will attract scholarship covering a broad range of cutting-edge relationally-oriented clinical research that examines the ways family therapists can help families and communities who have been and continue to be affected by today’s syndemic.

In particular, we are seeking proposals focused on (but not limited to):

  • developing and testing clinical theories (e.g., theories which link family therapy to interacting societal contexts),
  • creating and evaluating therapeutic interventions (e.g., interventions which address multilayered stressors and resources),
  • improving the training and supervision of marriage and family therapists (e.g., relevance of training on teletherapy), and
  • presenting innovative mechanisms to access data and conduct research.


Special consideration will be offered for proposals which include clinical data.

We also invite submissions on a wide variety of other topics important to the family therapy field. Research and applied presentations can focus on systemic topics including but not limited to:

  • intimacy,
  • relationship formation and dissolution,
  • parent-child relationships,
  • diverse families and couple relationships,
  • influences of larger social factors such as sexism, racism, classism, and heterosexism on individuals, couples, and families, and
  • therapeutic approaches and techniques.

Established researchers, therapists, and educators as well as students and new professionals are encouraged to submit proposals. Student and new professional poster and paper submissions that are first authored by FT Section members are eligible for awards within the section (please see descriptions on our section website at, and attend to the award solicitation discussion board posting in the fall).

In addition to the general NCFR review criteria for proposals, the FT Section expects that proposals will include practical implications for clinicians, educators, supervisors, and the profession of marriage and family therapy.

Contact: Nathan R. Hardy, Marriage and Family Therapy Program, Oklahoma State University; email: [email protected]

Feminism and Family Science

Feminism and Family Science (FF)

Dana Weiser, Chair

The FFS Section works to integrate feminist scholarship and perspectives into theory, research, and applied work with families. As feminist family scholars we explore, question, and critique biases and assumptions within the Family Science discipline with the goal of foregrounding and changing interlocking systems of privilege and oppression (e.g., challenging sexist, racist, classist, ableist, cissexist, and heterosexist beliefs).

The 2023 conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, invites feminist family scholars to think about how intersecting crises impact, inform, and shape family life and communities. Dr. Elise Radina, 2023 conference program chair, tasks us with considering how various pandemics, including but not limited to COVID-19, racial injustice, anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, and reproductive oppression, have created multiple layers of harm for individuals, families, and communities. As feminist family scholars, we are called to mourn, heal, advocate, and advance our scientific understandings in a world which continues to promote harmful ideologies, spread disinformation and pseudoscience, and pass legislation which marginalizes, oppresses, and hurts.

In our section’s ongoing commitment to fight systematic oppressions and inequities, we particularly encourage work that is grounded in intersectionality, critical frameworks, and praxis, including, but not limited to critical race, critical femininities, queer, Black, Chicana, Indigenous, and anti-colonial feminisms. We encourage submissions that foreground how White heteropatriarchal systems shape our understandings of individual, familial, and community well-being and contribute to the syndemic. As we are tasked in the conference theme to look forward, we further invite submissions which are critical, reflexive, and explicit in identifying ways to promote individual, family, and community well-being and healing.

We encourage work that is transdisciplinary; is grounded in sociohistorical and cultural contexts; and furthers NCFR’s goals of disseminating high-quality scholarship and theorizing, as well as engaging a diverse array of communities and practitioners. While not limited to these areas, some suggested topics for proposals may include:

  • shifting theoretical paradigms to engage with anti-racist, feminist, and queer theories
  • how LGBTQ+ individuals and families navigate harmful anti-LGBTQ+ policies and practices
  • navigating loss of bodily autonomy and reproductive justice in a post-Roe world
  • challenging patriarchal, heteronormative, U.S. centric, and White supremacist ideologies in family structure scholarship
  • how COVID-19 and accompanying public health measures have intersected with intimate partner and family violence experiences and service utilization
  • scholarship that highlights the voices of Queer, Black, Indigenous, Latinx, and Asian individuals and families
  • understanding how individuals and families continue to navigate the stressors of the COVID-19 pandemic and how women, People of Color, and/or people with disabilities are particularly impacted
  • engaging feminist pedagogy in classrooms and Family Life Education


Contact: Dana Weiser, Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, Texas Tech University, [email protected]


International (IN)

Raeann R. Hamon, Chair

The IN Section generates better understanding of unique variations of family processes throughout the world by promoting cross-national family research, facilitating communication among international family scholars, sharing information on current and proposed research projects, and sponsoring educational cross-national family programs, presentations, and seminars. The IN Section strives to increase the understanding of families around the world by globally promoting family research, education, policy, and practice.

Through its global focus, the IN Section has a great opportunity to make significant contributions to the 2023 conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic. The term syndemic calls our attention to the multiple health-related, climate-based, and social pandemics that are simultaneously impacting families and communities across the globe. Presenters are encouraged to consider ways in which various countries or regions encounter and respond to challenges outside of their control.

For the 2023 conference, the IN Section particularly welcomes proposals that focus on conditions and/or situations which impact international families and communities and how family researchers, practitioners, and policymakers can strengthen or enhance resilience in families and communities to withstand the vicissitudes of life. 

Possible topics related to the conference theme include:

  • unique challenges faced by families and communities around the globe;
  • creative approaches to promoting health and well-being among international families and communities during difficult times;
  • international policy solutions to various aspects of the current syndemic;
  • comparative family and community studies related to a societal influences and public health;
  • how varying political positions, religious perspectives, and value orientations affect family experiences around the globe, especially during difficult times;
  • successful strategies for combatting family and community stress in the post-COVID world.


The IN Section seeks to attract submissions from colleagues from around the world and have a wide geographical representation at the conference. We encourage our colleagues who are submitting and attending the conference from outside the United State and Canada to apply for the IN Section travel awards. Established scholars, early career professionals and students are encouraged to submit proposals.

Contact: Raeann R. Hamon, Department of Human Development and Family Science, Messiah University; email: [email protected]

Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Families

Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Families (REDF)

Shardé McNeil Smith, Chair

The REDF section examines child, youth, individual, family, and community issues within the sociopolitical, historical, economic, and cultural context and through the lens of ethnicity, race, and other social addresses. We specifically focus on the social, cultural, biological, regional and ancestral characteristics, traditions, learned behaviors, customs, and adaptive tendencies found at all levels of the human ecology. Our section strives to continue the legacy of our past Section members Marie F. Peters and John L. and Harriette P. McAdoo, who recognized the importance of human capital in ensuring resilience over adversity in families of color.

The theme of the 2023 conference, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, dovetails well with the values of the REDF section. Dr. Elise Radina, the 2023 NCFR conference program chair, asks us to critically examine how the current syndemic (e.g., the intersection of the COVID-19 pandemic with multiple social injustices such as racism, homophobia, gun violence, and climate change) has impacted and continues to impact the health and well-being of individuals, families, and communities. As such, examining how families of color are uniquely impacted by the syndemic, navigate the syndemic, and demonstrate acts of resistance through the syndemic are critical for advancing Family Science research, theory, practice, and policy.

When thinking of this year’s conference theme, in the context of REDF section values, one might consider:

  • the ways in which systemic racism creates and maintains the syndemic that consequently disproportionately influences the lives of families and communities of color;
  • the long-term impact of intersecting social injustices on families of color and the ways in which families prepare their members to navigate this reality;
  • the presence of resilience and resistance among family and community members;
  • the theoretical and methodological challenges and opportunities for understanding families of color living in a syndemic; and
  • existing programs and policies that best meets the needs of families of color.


We welcome other research, theory, practices, and policies that provide a cultural perspective on any aspect of the 2023 conference theme while centering children, youth, and families from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. We encourage proposals to consider how experiences operate at the intersection of race, ethnicity, and other social position characteristics.

Scholars, practitioners, and new professionals of all ethnic, racial, and diverse backgrounds are encouraged to submit proposals. Accepted proposals submitted by Students or New Professionals (SNP)—who are also REDF Section members—will be considered for the SNP Best Proposal Awards for the section. The submission must demonstrate research that is completed and focused on a topic that has direct relevance to racial and ethnically diverse families.

Contact: Shardé McNeil Smith, Department of Human Development and Family Studies, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; email: [email protected]

Religion, Spirituality, & Family

Religion, Spirituality, & Family (RSF)

Andrew H. Rose, Chair

The RSF Section furthers the study of religion and its relationship to the family. The study and examination of the impact of religion on family life is examined as well as the relationship of religion to other family-related disciplines and NCFR Sections.

The 2023 NCFR conference theme, “The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic,” is multifaceted in understanding the intersectionality of the COVID-19 pandemic, health disparities, and social unrest. The conference theme lends itself to many themes around religion, spirituality, and family life. The intersectionality of health and well-being coupled with lacking resources and access of those who are minoritized presents a unique intersection that needs additional knowledge and understanding to help enact change. It is well known that significant relations have been found between religion, spirituality, and health outcomes. Additionally, the role of religion and spirituality has been a source of strength and contention among those who are minoritized. We invite proposals that consider the impact and role of religion and spirituality within the syndemic. We welcome proposals that highlight strengths and weaknesses regarding the ways in which religion and spirituality may impact communities, families, and individuals who are at the center of the syndemic.

The following questions may be helpful in formulating proposals to be submitted to the RSF Section for the 2023 conference:

  • How has religion/spirituality impacted health disparities for families?
  • How have religion/spirituality impacted, and been impacted, by the Covid-19 pandemic?
  • How has religion/spirituality helped or hindered social injustices?
  • How can religion/spirituality strengthen and support those who are minoritized?
  • How can religion/spirituality harm those who are minoritized?
  • What are ways in which religion/spirituality impact how families interact in societies?
  • How have religion/spirituality influenced the ways families coped with the pandemic?
  • How does religion/spirituality intersect with health disparities for minoritized families? 
  • How can understanding religion/spirituality help us understand the impact of the syndemic on families?


These questions are not meant to be exhaustive but are intended to provide ideas on how a focus on religion and spirituality may add to this year’s conference theme. All proposals on these or other issues related to religion, spirituality, and family are welcomed.

Contact: Andrew H. Rose, Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work, Texas Tech University; email: [email protected]

Research and Theory

Research and Theory (RT)

Beth Russell, Chair

The RT Section focuses on promoting work that effectively integrates research and theory about families and the context in which families live, work, interact, and develop. All theoretical perspectives and styles of research that emphasize both conceptual and empirical rigor are welcome.

Consistent with the purpose of RT, we invite proposals that:

  • rigorously explore the links between theory and the research process or methodologies; and
  • anchor research questions or hypotheses in a clearly articulated theoretical perspective.


This year’s theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, provides an opportunity to use a critical lens on the unique synergies of challenges family experienced during co-occurring epidemics that characterize a syndemic. This year’s conference challenges scholars to consider the intersections of risk and resilience factors families navigate by incorporating innovative theories and methods that push our discipline forward to a more inclusive and representative future.

We underscore a call for theoretically grounded proposals that present rigorous cutting-edge aspects of a content area, methodology, or analytic procedure. We invite you to submit a proposal and encourage your colleagues to do the same.

Possible topics of particular salience to our section might include

  • advances in measurement, assessment, and analysis that are anchored in theory, particularly those that leverage advances in analysis and technology (e.g., machine learning or digital indicators of health and well-being)
  • results from qualitative or quantitative studies that highlight theoretically-driven research questions about individual or family experiences of stress and strain and the resilience or recovery that follows; mixed-methods designs are of particular interest
  • reports on the development of new theories that account for contemporary understanding of within group heterogeneity (e.g., variability in outcomes when accounting for social determinants of health and well-being).


Symposium proposals are strengthened by including scholars who are from diverse disciplines or who approach the topic with innovative methodological strategies and theoretical perspectives and should include a maximum of four papers organized around a common theme, with a named discussant. In addition, formats other than symposia are welcome. Presentations by senior scholars as well as rising new scholars are encouraged, as are proposals by scholars from outside of North America.

We look forward to putting together another great selection of RT Section sessions!

Contact: Beth Russell, Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, University of Connecticut; email: [email protected]

Affiliate Councils (State/Regional and Student Interests)

Affiliate Councils (AC)

Student and State/Regional Affiliate Workshops

Janis L. Henderson, Affiliate Councils Conference Program Chair

The NCFR Affiliate Councils (AC) and its governing body, the Affiliate Councils Board (ACB), provide support to NCFR state/regional and student affiliate organizations. As the AC conference program representative, my goal is to encourage the NCFR membership to engage more fully with an NCFR affiliate and explore the many benefits of affiliate involvement.

NCFR Affiliates provide opportunities to interact within communities at the state, regional, or university level (local), spur new initiatives within those communities, and allow members to develop new and expanded perspectives on a variety of topics important to families. Active engagement in an affiliate provides a network of colleagues who empower individuals and can support the work being done. Strong state/regional and student affiliates are vital to NCFR as they play an important role in connecting the national, state/regional, and local perspectives. Student affiliate membership consists of students who anticipate careers in Family Science as well as university faculty that serve as advisors. State/regional affiliate membership includes Family Science professionals working as researchers, scholars, and practitioners. State/regional affiliates can provide students with a network beyond their university home. State/Regional members are encouraged to explore ways they can connect with and support student affiliates – for example, offering to speak at meetings or provide guidance (easily done virtually or in person).

The 2023 NCFR Conference theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, suggests that Family Science scholars and practitioners seek new understandings and views of our communities and, given the multiple pandemics, the changing needs within those communities. The AC Board seeks to build on the spirit of the theme by hosting a session in which affiliate leadership and members contribute to a series of discussions focused on promoting and strengthening participation in individual affiliates and the AC as a whole.

The ACB recognizes that with the societal challenges and the changes we are experiencing, the needs of the affiliates and affiliate members have and will continue to evolve. The ACB’s goal is to organize a session that provides NCFR affiliate leaders and members the opportunity to explore innovative ideas that promote affiliate involvement. The ACB wants to reinvigorate interest in affiliate participation, moving it to the forefront of NCFR member involvement, and seek input on building and growing stronger affiliates.

We invite affiliate members, including but not limited to those who currently serve or have served in leadership roles, to submit proposals on the following CONVERSATION TOPICS

Challenges to and innovative strategies for engaging members.
  • Conversations surrounding programming, benefits of membership, outreach, recruitment and retention strategies, or other areas related to engaging existing, new, or potential members.
Building organizational strength and sustainability through leadership and/or team building.
  • Conversations surrounding bylaws or bylaw revisions, leadership training or transition, strategic planning, fundraising, grant writing, securing donors for affiliate activities, or other issues of the process of conducting the business of the affiliate.
Creating and/or maintaining social media presence or marketing strategies to promote the affiliate.
  • Conversations related to promotional and marketing the value of membership or related to advertising and promotion of programming.
Encompassing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.
  • Conversations can address any relevant issue, such as inclusion of marginalized groups within the affiliates’ geographic location, equity in approach to membership needs, or other related concerns.
Conference and event strategies – planning, implementing, evaluating,
  • Conversations related to affiliate offerings, including what worked, what did not, or requests for guidance related to a specific area of program development.  


Proposals accepted for presentation will contribute as panel participants in  a larger discussion of each of the five conversation topics rather than being responsible for a full presentation on the topic. 

Proposals can approach the topic as an exploration of related insights or challenges, lessons learned, requests for ideas or innovative strategies, or other appropriate topic discussion.



Individuals or collaborative groups are invited to submit.

Please submit the following two separate documents in PDF format addressing the following:

1. A 50-to-100-word abstract discussing the conversation topic including:
  • title for proposal conversation,
  • the conversation topic,
  • the intent of the proposal (e.g., innovative idea, lesson learned, suggestion for discussion) including a short explanatory statement of how the proposal addresses the conversation topic), and
  • 1 objective


2. Presenter Information: Include the following for each presenter:

  • Name,
  • Name of applicable state/regional or student affiliate,
  • Email address,
  • Professionals should include degree earned, discipline and university where the degree was earned, current employer, and title.
  • Students should include the program and university in which they are currently enrolled.
  • The first presenter will be the primary contact between NCFR conference planners.

Proposal documents should be emailed by March 1, 2023, 11:59 p.m. PST.

Email to Maddie Hansen ([email protected]), Director of Development and Member Affairs



The ACB encourages applications/nominations for the three AC awards:

Affiliate Grant (grant money for the affiliate group); Meritorious Service Award (outstanding service by state and regional affiliate members); and President for-a-Day-Award (for a student or new professional member) which encourages award recipient’s development of NCFR leadership skills. Recipient will shadow the NCFR President throughout the 2022 Conference).


Contact: Janis Henderson, ACB Program Chair, J. Henderson Education Services; email: [email protected]
Students and New Professionals

Students and New Professionals (SNP)

Allen Mallory, Program Representative

SNP sessions promote professional skill development and provide relevant information to students (graduate and undergraduate) and new professionals (within five years of their final degree). The primary emphasis for SNP sessions is on promoting professional development for students, teachers, researchers, and practitioners at the early stages of their careers.

We encourage students, new professionals, and seasoned professionals to submit proposals. The 2023 conference theme is “The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic” The theme’s goal of highlighting and critically examining the ways in which the current syndemic has and continues to change the lives of families across the globe will ideally be expanded to SNP sessions.

With the conference theme, goals, and the SNP mission in mind, we are particularly interested in proposals related to:

  • applying for grants/funding as students and new professionals;
  • applying to graduate school;
  • navigating school/academia as a member of historically excluded/underrepresented group(s);
  • outreach and public scholarship: science communication, translational research, and broader impacts engagement;
  • scholar-activism and/or practitioner-activism;
  • setting goals for your career;
  • sustaining work-life integration (self-care, overcoming the imposter syndrome, etc.);
  • teaching and pedagogy for new professionals;
  • tips and tricks for the job market (academic and non-academic); and
  • tips, tricks, and benefits of post-doctoral positions.


We welcome all proposals related to skill building and/or professional development relevant to students and new professionals. If you are a student or new professional with a proposal outside of those foci, it may be a better fit in one of the other sections.

The SNP Program Rep is happy to answer any questions or provide feedback regarding proposal ideas.

Contact: Allen Mallory, Department of Human Sciences, The Ohio State University; email: [email protected]

Theory Construction & Research Methodology

Theory Construction & Research Methodology (TCRM) Workshop

Bethany Willis and Nikki DiGregorio, Co-Chairs

Since its establishment in 1971, the Theory Construction and Research Methodology Workshop (TCRM) has been a collegial forum for the discussion, development and refinement of theory and methods relevant to the study of families. It is a venue for cutting-edge work in family theory and research methods. TCRM workshops are held in conjunction with the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) annual conference. All who have an interest in family theory and research methods, including graduate students and new professionals, are invited to attend and participate.

The TCRM Workshop offers a unique opportunity for scholars to discuss working papers that emphasize four goals: (1) family theory; (2) research methodology; (3) emerging/novel ideas in the study of families; and/or (4) reconsideration of long-held practices and ideas in Family Sciences. The TCRM workshop is scheduled to take place immediately prior to the 2023 NCFR Conference on November 7-8, in Orlando, Florida. This year we plan to offer a specific session to highlight the work of students and assistant professors related to the four goals above.

We invite scholars to submit proposals that would be of interest to a wide range of scholars, including applied researchers. Preference will be given to papers that focus on this year’s NCFR theme, The Way We Are Now: Families and Communities at the Center of the Syndemic, which encourages participants to recognize the confluence of factors impacting family formation and functioning, as well as the causes and consequences of intersecting individual, family, and social issues. We welcome submissions that seek to broaden our theoretical and methodological frameworks for thinking about intersecting pandemic, social justice, and political movements. Such social shifts may require critical examination and reconceptualization of issues that, while may have long histories, are being experienced in novel and different ways in the new millennium. Submissions with the potential to advance Family Science toward theoretical and methodological practices that are inclusive of major social issues of the day and grounded in family processes will be given priority.

TCRM sessions are unique from other NCFR sessions. Authors submit their papers before meeting and leaders in the field serve as discussants, providing detailed reviews of papers, again before the meeting in November. Authors’ papers and extended abstracts are made available to attendees prior to TCRM so that they can provide their own feedback on each paper during the session. In the past, we have had presenters summarize their papers at the beginning of the session. This year, authors will not describe their papers during the TCRM session. Instead, we are asking authors to provide an extended abstract to participants to read before the TCRM session, if they cannot read the entire paper. This process will allow us to get to the discussion quicker. The extended abstract should be about 1000 words and represent what authors would have presented at the beginning of a session in previous years. Sessions will include discussant comments, author responses, and audience feedback. The goal of these sessions is to provide deep intellectual conversation and substantive feedback to authors.

Generally speaking, TCRM papers should focus on theory and/or methodology, but empirical papers highlighting emerging/novel uses of theory and/or methodology are also invited. TCRM is sponsored by NCFR’s Journal of Family Theory & Review (JFTR) which encourages the submission and publication of TCRM papers in the journal.

We will accept proposals for four types of sessions:

  • Working papers: special topics in theory, methodology, novel uses, or reconsideration of family frameworks. Paper proposals are submitted individually.
  • Paper symposium: There are two types of paper symposiums. For both types of paper symposia, proposals should be submitted according to NCFR symposium guidelines (see page 4 of the full 2023 NCFR Conference Call for Proposals at
    • Working paper session: 2-4 papers discussing a particular topic associated with family theory, research methodology, or other foci of TCRM.
    • Dialogue session: sessions focused on opposing or differing viewpoints on a specific topic. Presenters and the audience will engage in a discussion around a common topic to examine conceptual similarities and differences.
  • Methodology or theory workshops: open format sessions focusing on specific methodological techniques, data sources, or theories related to the qualitative or quantitative study of families. Theory workshops could focus on theory building or application.


TCRM proposals should be submitted via the TCRM Proposal Google Form and include:

  1. the full paper, symposium, workshop title, or dialogue session name;
  2. a short abstract (approximately 100 words, for publicity);
  3. a proposal of 1,750 words or less (excluding any tables, figures, or references) for peer review saved as a PDF;
  4. a minimum of two suggestions for discussants.

If you are unable to access Google Forms, you may email your proposal to [email protected].

Proposals will be evaluated based on:

  • background, context, and significance of the topic proposal; connections to the theme are welcomed
  • relationship to one or more of the four TCRM goals listed at the beginning;
  • a description of how the paper, session, or workshop addresses innovative, novel, and/or important issues in
  • theory, methodology, or the empirical study of families;
  • a brief discussion of the paper, session, or workshop’s implications for research and/or practice. Evidence of work already underway is welcomed and encouraged.

The deadline for TCRM submission is March 15, 2023, at 11:59 p.m. PST. Authors of accepted papers will be required to submit a full version of their paper, up to 35 pages (all inclusive) and extended abstracts (1,000 words), by August 16th, 2023, and discussant reviews due by October 6th, 2023.

TCRM submissions are not submitted through the NCFR online submission system. TCRM submitters should complete the TCRM Proposal Google Form to submit their TCRM proposal. Please contact the TCRM co-chairs, Bethany Willis (Towson University) and Nikki DiGregorio (Georgia Southern University), with any questions, inquiries, or volunteer requests at [email protected].

If you are unable to access Google Forms, you may email your proposal to [email protected].