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Center for Teaching Excellence

  • Oktoberbest 2024

Oktoberbest Call for Proposals

Thank you for your interest in submitting a professional development session proposal for Oktoberbest 2024 to be held on October 25, 2024. 

Oktoberbest features engaging and informative presentations on innovative approaches to teaching, assessments, course design, creative student learning opportunities, and successful implementation of new strategies and best practices implemented by USC faculty, graduate teaching assistants, and staff.

The goal of Oktoberbest is for attendees to actively engage in sessions that enhance innovative teaching practices and establish meaningful connections. The Center for Teaching Excellence warmly welcomes professional development proposals from USC faculty, graduate teaching assistants and staff that actively engage with and contribute to this goal.

Session Information

This call for proposals is for 30-minute interactive sessions. During the session, attendees should actively contribute, collaborate, and learn through activities such as discussions, group work, and simulations. Presenters should create an immersive and participatory environment that encourages engagement and fosters a deeper understanding of the topic being presented. Your goal is to go beyond sharing one of your teaching practices to teach other instructors how they can apply or implement your ideas.

Proposal Submission Timeline

  • Submissions Open: Thursday, April 25, 2024
  • Submission Deadlines: Friday, September 6, 2024
  • Acceptance Notifications: Friday, September 23, 2024

Accepted presenters will meet with a member of CTE by early October to discuss their presentation.

Submit the following information through the Online Proposal Submission Form.

Session Title: Craft a concise and compelling title that aligns with your topic and the Oktoberbest symposiums' goal.  (12-word limit)

Session Description: Provide a session description (300-word limit)

Your description should include:

  • A description of your session’s actionable takeaways for attendees.  
  • A description of how the session will facilitate attendee learning. Focus on how you will teach attendees about your teaching practice, how it will impact the classroom and beyond, how you will demonstrate your implementation of these strategies, and how others can apply them in their teaching contexts
  • An outline or description of the engagement methods you plan to use.  Engagement methods may include Q&A sessions, group discussions, individual reflection, sharing, and other creative ideas.  

Session Learning Outcomes: Define 1-3 clear learning outcomes that detail what attendees will be able to do after actively participating in your session. Each outcome must be specific, measurable, and directly related to your session's topic. (30-word limit per learning outcome)

Session Abstract: The session abstract will be used in the Oktoberbest symposium program upon proposal acceptance. It provides attendees with context on your topic, so be sure that the abstract aligns with your presentation. (100-word limit)

On the Online Proposal Submission Form you will be asked to indicate which concurrent session(s) you are available to present, if selected. Check ALL the timeslots that you would be available to present. Multiple selections are encouraged.

Concurrent Session I
1:20 – 1:50 p.m.
Concurrent Session II 2:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Inclusive Strategies 

The language used in each presentation should be inclusive. All content should be meticulously examined to remove any language that may be considered marginalizing, including terms that are ableist, gender-specific, or racially insensitive. The proposed presentation should be free from such language. 

Universal Design Principles  

The objective of applying Universal Design Principles to presentations is to guarantee that all materials, discussions, and activities are accessible to every attendee. This includes the use of high-contrast color schemes, the selection of readable sans-serif typefaces, and the provision of diverse ways to participate. These principles should be incorporated into the design of the presentation. If you want help incorporating these techniques into your session, please contact CTE upon acceptance.

Submit Oktoberbest 2024 Proposal


Contact Interim Director,  Matt E. Thatcher at for more information.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.