Call for Abstracts: 2021 Child Life Annual Conference

The conference will be held May 27–30, 2021, at the JW Marriott in Los Angeles, California.

The Child Life Annual Conference is designed for and attracts representatives at every level of the child life profession in hospital, physician practice, and academic settings.

The online submission portal will open on July 1, 2020 and close at 11:59 pm Eastern on July 31, 2020. For more information, please download the 2021 Call for Abstract Guidelines.
The collection of abstract submissions for the 2021 Child Life Annual Conference will open July 1st. The link to submit an abstract through the online submission portal will be available on July 1st.  Abstract acceptance and non-acceptance communications will be sent out in mid-October.

For more information, please email Ramona Spencer at or download the 2021 Call for Abstract Guidelines.

Abstract Submission Overview

Benefits of Presenting

Presenting offers the opportunity to:

  • Improve the child life profession
  • Share creative ideas and best practices
  • Demonstrate your leadership
  • Expand your industry recognition
  • Network with your peers
  • Receive discounted full conference registration
  • Earn PDUs

Suggested Presentation Formats

The committee is seeking all forms of professional development with an emphasis on interactive, experimental learning:

  • Sessions (1 hour)
  • Workshops (1.5 hours)
  • Half-day intensives (3 hours)
  • Virtual Poster presentations

Presentation Domains

To assist attendees in meeting their certification requirements, we encourage submissions in the following domains:

  • Professional Responsibility
    • Ethics
  • Assessment
  • Intervention

Suggested Presentation Level

The committee is particularly interested in proposals of advanced level workshops developed for attendees with more than 10 years of experience, and completed research in the areas of play, medical play, bereavement support, and sibling support.

Suggested Topics

Suggested presentation topics for 2021 include innovative ideas and best practices in the following areas:

  • Academic & clinical preparation
  • Age-specific
  • Bereavement/Grief
  • Community-based child life
  • Cultural competency
  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
  • Diagnosis-specific (i.e., autism, sickle cell, etc.)
  • Documentation
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Ethics
  • Families
  • Interdisciplinary collaboration
  • Leadership development
  • Management strategies
  • Medical play
  • Palliative care
  • Play
  • Preparation
  • Program development
  • Research (completed)
  • School issues
  • Self-care/personal development
  • Specialty areas (i.e., emergency, oncology, etc.)
  • Technology
  • Therapeutic play
  • Other

Professional Development