Message from the ISLS President and Board

Dear Colleagues,

As you know, due to COVID 19 we were forced to cancel the face-to-face meeting of the ICLS 2020 conference in Nashville, TN. As you might imagine this was an extremely difficult decision to make. Many people have already invested a great deal of time and effort in the conference, especially the conference co-organizers Melissa Gresalfi and Lani Horn and the strand leaders, reviewers, and of course the members who have worked hard to submit your work and submissions. To each and every one of you we express our gratitude and appreciation for all of these efforts.

As our conference co-organizers have announced, we have developed a plan that will allow us to connect as scholars. This plan takes into account the impact the pandemic is having on all of our lives – the new challenges, uncertainties, and responsibilities we are faced with on a day to day basis. In this new reality we are sometimes forced to make choices about what we can and cannot do. The co-organizers have organized an exciting online conference that offers livestreaming and video recordings of the highlighted features of the conference—the keynotes, a subset of special sessions, and the best paper awardees. Watch for forthcoming announcements from the Conference Organizers for additional information.

Of course, these changes to ICLS 2020 have implications for Membership and Registration Fees.  The International Society of the Learning Sciences, compared to many academic societies, is relatively small and operates mostly on voluntary commitments from the larger community. The change in conference format substantially impacts the financial situation for ISLS, which provides the thousands of dollars in initial funding required for each year’s conference with the hope that conference registrations will be sufficient to break even so that funds are available to provide the seed funding for the next year’s conference, and so on. In order to maintain sustainability, the board has approved the following decisions.

Registration fees that have been paid for the face to face conference will be refunded. Further information will be sent to those who are due refunds within the very near future.
To be included in the Proceedings of ICLS 2020 at least one author of a presentation, paper, or poster must register for the conference. This is the case for the Proceedings of every ISLS conference.  For the ICLS 2020 Proceedings, at least one author must be registered no later than June 5, 2020.
The ICLS 2020 Conference Registration fee has been substantially reduced and offers four payment options. You must be registered for the Conference to access the online conference.

Rationale: Conference registration fees are based on projected costs of running the conference. The projected costs for running ICLS 2020 in the online format are substantial, although much less than what they would have been for a face to face meeting. The costs reflect funds already expended for professional conference organization services, professional preparation of the Proceedings, and technology infrastructure and services for the conference (e.g., submission and review system, website development and management).  In the past conference registration fees have typically covered the costs of running the conference and have had a neutral impact on the financial status of the ISLS. This year, however, ISLS anticipates a major net loss because of the COVID-19 crisis and is asking for help to mitigate this loss.
To that end:
a. We have reduced the ICLS 2020 Conference Registration Fee to $150.
b. We are asking those of you who can to please pay the full fee.
c. Additional Options: If the full fee is beyond your means, you may select one of three other options: $100, $50, or $0. Please pay whatever you feel you can.
To Register:
You must be a member to register for the conference. (Regular membership: $100 per year; Student membership: $60.). Become a member at or renew your membership at
If you have any questions or concerns please direct them to [email protected].

These are indeed trying times for all of us. Please know that we are trying to make the best decisions we can for the sake of our community. We ask for your patience as we figure this out. We hope you are all doing what you can to take care of yourselves at this difficult time. We hope to see you in person soon.

With warm regards,

Heisawn Jeong and the ISLS Board of Directors

ISLS President 2019-2020

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