Shakespeare Association of America

Frequently Asked Questions

  • General Questions
    What is the SAA?

    The Shakespeare Association of America (SAA) is a non-profit professional organization for the advanced academic study of William Shakespeare’s plays and poems, his cultural and theatrical contexts, and the many roles these have played in world culture. The SAA is a member of the American Council of Learned Societies. Click to find out more about the Purpose of the SAA .

    How long has the SAA been around?

    The SAA was founded in 1972. Click to learn more about the history of the SAA.

    How big is the SAA?

    The SAA currently has over two thousand members. Its Annual Meetings typically have around a thousand registrants each year.

    Who are the SAA members?

    Members of the SAA come from North America and other parts of the world. The majority of SAA members are faculty in higher education and graduate students. In addition, there are professionals from research institutes, libraries, theatre, films, secondary education, and more.

    What does the SAA do?

    The SAA holds annual conferences, at which SAA members meet to exchange ideas and strategies for reading, teaching, researching, and writing about topics of shared interest. Click the tab Annual Meetings below to find out more.

    Who runs the SAA?

    The SAA is governed by the SAA Board of Trustees, consisting of nine Trustees elected by the general membership, including a President and a Vice-President. The Trustees appoint the organization’s Executive Director, who works with other staff members. Click to learn more about the elections and the current SAA officers.

    Where is the SAA located?

    The SAA office is located at the Department of English of the University of Mississippi.

    What are the SAA’s policies?

    Click to consult the SAA’s Constitution and additional policies.

    How do I find out about SAA events?

    The SAA issues two bulletins a year, in January and the June, with information about upcoming events. Click the button Get the Bulletin on the left to read the current bulletin. You may also view past bulletins, or follow us on social media.

    How do I get involved and participate in SAA events?

    Sign up as a member to be part of the SAA. Click the tab Membership below to find out more.

    Can I send the SAA information about my events?

    The SAA welcomes contributions to our Announcements Page, which gives information about relevant faculty position openings, fellowship programs, calls for papers, conference notices, performances, and general news that interest Shakespearean.

    How do I contact the SAA office?

    The best way to contact the SAA office is by e-mail.

    How do I give to the SAA?

    Click the Donate button on the left to support our members through new initiatives and ongoing programs such as conference travel grants for graduate students and contingent faculty.

  • Membership
    Who can join the SAA?

    The SAA is open to all Shakespeare scholars and to any other persons to whom the study of Shakespeare is important. Membership is reserved to those who have paid current dues to the Association and who observe SAA policies and guidelines.

    Why do I want to join the SAA?

    SAA members can attend the Annual Meetings, vote and be elected to serve, and enjoy other benefits. Click to find out about member benefits and member discounts.

    How do I become a member?

    Click the Join or Renew button on your left to become a member.

    How much does it cost to join the SAA?

    SAA membership dues are charged on an academic-year basis (1 June through 31 May) and graduated according to annual income. Click to see the dues rates and methods of payment.

    Can I get a receipt for my dues payment?

    Absolutely. Please contact the SAA office.

    Why am I getting an error message when I click on the Join or Renew button?

    The Membership form is only for new or expired members. If your membership is current, you will be denied access. Please use the Member Log In button to check if your membership is current.

    What can I do at the Members Only Section?

    You can update your profile, upload a profile photo, register for Annual Meetings, enroll for seminars and workshops, apply for grants and fellowships, submit program proposals, browse or search the membership directory, and access member discounts.

    How do I get to the members only section?

    Click the Member Log In button on the left to log in to the members only section.

    How do I submit information about my publications?

    If you have published work that was developed in an SAA seminar or workshop, please complete the Member Publications Form and e-mail it to the SAA office.

    What do I do if I forget my password?

    The SAA website will send a password link to your e-mail address if you click on the Forgot Password button. The link will include instructions to establish a new password. You may also contact the SAA office to reset your password.

    How do I know if I am a member in good standing?

    Your membership status may be confirmed online by logging in on the SAA website.

    How do I get to know other SAA members?

    Once logged in, you can browse and search the SAA Membership Directory.

    I paid my membership dues in February, why do they expired in June?

    SAA membership runs on an academic calendar, with each new membership year commencing in June. Those who pay dues in February in order to attend an Annual Meeting in March or April will need to renew their membership in June if they wish to enroll in the next year’s seminars or workshops.

    How do I renew my SAA membership?

    Please click the Join or Renew button on the left to renew your membership.

  • Annual Meetings
    What are the SAA Annual Meetings?

    Once a year, SAA members gather for a four-day conference. The conference program includes plenary sessions, paper sessions, seminars, workshops, performances, film screenings, digital exhibits, and other special events.

    When do the SAA Annual Meetings take place?

    The SAA Annual Meetings take place in March or April on a three-year rotation. The meeting opens on Wednesday and closes on Saturday. Please check the tab Annual Meetings above for this year’s dates.

    Where do the SAA Annual Meetings take place?

    Every year a hotel in a North American city is chosen as the conference hotel. Hotel capacity and facilities, room rates, transportation, and local attractions and support are important factors for the choice of hotels. SAA officers always welcome suggestions from the membership about meeting places. The next meeting will take place in Jacksonville, Florida.

    Can I see programs of past SAA Annual Meetings?

    Click to see past meeting programs.

    How do I find out about the next SAA Annual Meeting?

    Program schedules are posted on 1 January of the year, with the publication of the January Bulletin.

    Who organizes the SAA Annual Meeting?

    Each SAA Annual Meeting represents the collaborative efforts of a number of people across several years. After consulting with the Board of Trustees about meeting locations, the SAA’s Executive Director contracts with a host hotel. In each area there is a Local Arrangements Committee that raises funds to underwrite the year’s Opening Reception, arranges special events, and advises on other conference activities. The year’s panel sessions, seminars, and workshops are developed by a Program Committee, whose work is reviewed by the Board of Trustees.

    Do I have to be a member to attend the SAA Annual Meetings?

    SAA Annual Meetings are for registered members only.

    Can I bring a guest?

    Guests of registered members are welcome at all panel sessions, film screenings, and coffee breaks at no cost. Guest tickets to the Annual Luncheon and special evening events may be purchased during the conference registration process. Guests may attend the Opening Reception only when wearing official name tags, which can also be requested during the registration process.

    How much does it cost to attend the SAA Annual Meetings?

    The SAA works hard to make the Annual Meetings affordable. We offer discount rates for students, independent scholars, and contingent and retired faculty. Please check the tab Annual Meetings above for this year’s rates.

    What does the registration fee cover?

    Registrants can attend all academic sessions (panels, roundtables, seminars, workshops, and practicums), performances and screenings, special events, exhibits, and social events (the annual luncheon, the reception, and the Scholars of Color Social). You will need to pay for your drinks at events labeled as “cash bar.”

    Does the SAA offer any travel grants?

    Graduate students, contingent faculty, and independent scholars can apply for travel grants, which include travel support and registration fee waivers. Click for more information about Travel Grants.

    How much do hotel rooms cost?

    The SAA has successfully maintained a record of low hotel rates. Please click the Annual Meetings tab above for this year’s rates.

    How do I book a hotel room?

    Please use the conference hotel’s web-based reservation system to book your room with SAA discount rates. Hotel registration opens on 2 January.

    How do I get on the program?

    In the summer of 2021, you may enroll in a 2022 seminar or workshop. In the fall of 2021, you may propose to exhibit a 2022 digital humanities project. In the spring of 2022, you may propose a panel session, seminar, or workshop for the 2023. Open the tabs Paper Sessions, Seminars and Workshops, and Digital Exhibits below to find out more.

    Can graduate students participate?

    Only dissertation candidates are eligible to enroll in a seminar or workshop. Graduate students not verified can only audit seminars and workshops. Open the tab Seminars and Workshops below to find out how to get your status verified. Other Annual Meeting events are open to graduate students.

  • Seminars and Workshops
    What are SAA seminars and workshops?

    SAA seminars and workshops serve as forums for fresh research, mutual criticism, and pedagogical experimentation. The seminar or workshop leaders determine the extent and nature of work to be done, and papers are circulated in advance. Seminar and workshop meetings are devoted to a discussion. The sessions are not to involve either reading or summarizing papers. Click the Annual Meeting tab above to find the page of current seminars and workshops.

    How do the SAA seminars and workshops work?

    Seminar and workshop descriptions are posted online and in the June Bulletin. Enrollment opens on 1 June and closes on 15 September. When enrolling, you are required to enter four choices, and placement is on a first-come, first-served basis. Placement notifications are issued in early October, and by late October you will receive guidelines, directions, and deadlines for work to be completed in advance of the conference. Click to read the Guidelines for SAA Seminars and Workshops.

    How big is a seminar or workshop?

    To ensure quality discussion, the enrollment of a seminar or workshop caps at sixteen. For the most popular seminars and workshops, the leaders may run two sessions of sixteen participants each.

    Can graduate students participate in a seminar or workshop?

    Pre-dissertation graduate students are welcome to audit, but only graduate students working on their dissertation are eligible to enroll. When enrolling, you will need to provide your advisor’s name and e-mail. The SAA office will contact your advisor to verify your status.

    I am presenting a paper in a panel session, can I also enroll in a seminar or workshop?

    Session presenters are not allowed to enroll in seminars or workshops.

    I am leading a seminar/workshop, can I enroll in a different seminar or workshop?

    Seminar and workshop leaders cannot enroll in other seminars or workshops.

    I am leading a seminar/workshop, do I need to enroll in my own seminar/workshop?

    If you are leading a seminar/workshop, you do not need to enroll.

    I am invited to join a seminar/workshop, do I need to enroll?

    Each seminar or workshop leader can reserve four spots. If you are an invitee, you do not need to submit the online enrollment form. If you have already made different choices before you receive an invitation, the SAA will contact you to find out your preference.

    Can I change my mind after enrollment?

    The online enrollment form can only be submitted once. If you change your mind before 15 September, you need to contact the SAA office. Please note that, because placement is on a first-come, first-served basis, any modification of your choices will entail the loss of your original place in the queue.

    What if I missed the enrollment deadline?

    Most seminars and workshops fill up before 15 September. If you miss the deadline, you may contact the SAA office to see if any seminars or workshops are still available.

    Can I switch after I receive my seminar/workshop placement?

    After 15 September, the SAA has a no-switch policy.

    What do I do when circumstances prevent me from completing assigned work?

    Only those who have completed their work in a timely manner will be listed in the printed program. If you cannot make the deadlines, you can only audit.

    Can I participate in a seminar or workshop remotely, over Skype, Zoom, or other video or audio conferencing tools?

    In order to keep the conference’s character intact, it is the SAA’s policy to not permit remote participation. Due to the pandemic of Covid-19, this policy has been suspended for the 2021 Annual Meeting.

    Can I propose a seminar or workshop?

    Postdoctoral members can propose to lead seminars and workshops. The deadline to apply for the 2022 Annual Meeting is 15 February 2021.

    How can I lead a successful seminar or workshop?

    Seminars and workshops should open a number of pathways into a subject, recognizing that the seminar and workshop meeting is an occasion for focused but open discussion of written work completed in advance. Advance work may involve readings, online discussions, shared syllabi, performances, and pedagogical exercises, as well as research papers. For descriptions of seminars and workshops from previous years, consult any June Bulletin. For assistance in crafting a competitive proposal, consult any member of the Program Committee. Click to consult advice from the SAA office and from previous seminar and workshop leaders.

    Can I participate in seminars and workshops I am not enrolled in?

    When space allows, seminars and workshops are open to auditors. You may browse the descriptions of sessions and the seminar abstracts to decide which sessions you want to audit.

  • Panel and Roundtable Sessions
    Who can propose a session?

    Proposals are accepted from postdoctoral SAA members in good standing.

    What types of sessions will be considered?

    While the traditional format has been three twenty-minute papers per session, the SAA invites proposals for other formats for engaging important ideas and issues. Paper panels, roundtables, and other formats for public discussion should address topics of current interest and general appeal for the SAA membership. For assistance in crafting a competitive proposal, consult any member of the Program Committee.

    Can I include graduate students and speakers from previous meetings in my session?

    Dissertation candidates are eligible to speak on SAA panels. No one may speak on an SAA panel more than once in any three-year period.

    What information should I include in my proposal?

    You should include a title and a description of the proposed session, a description of the objectives, a description of each presentation, and the name, affiliation, short bio, and e-mail of each presenter. Click to consult the proposal guidelines.

    Will individual papers be considered?

    The SAA is not currently accepting individual papers except for those applying for the NextGenPlen. See the NextGenPlen question below.

    What is the NextGenPlen?

    Each SAA meeting features a plenary session of short papers by early-career presenters. NextGenPlen papers are selected via a blind screening process, with precedence given to those introducing new topics, displaying fresh thinking about traditional issues, and demonstrating diverse approaches. Due to the cancellation of the 2020 conference, the 2020 NextGenPlen will roll over to the program for the 2021 conference in Austin, and we will not be taking applications for NextGenPlen this year. Instead the completion date requirements for application to the 2022 conference in Jacksonville, FL have been temporarily adjusted so that anyone who did not get a chance to apply for 2021 can do so for 2022.

    I am enrolled in a seminar/workshop, can I still apply for the NextGenPlen?

    Yes, but you need to withdraw from your seminar or workshop if you are selected for the NextGenPlen.

    What is a Futures Panel?

    The Shakespearean Futures initiative is a multi-year series of panel sessions exploring the material and institutional conditions of intellectual work, professional life, and the SAA. “Futures” panels are focused on topics that involve analysis of the broader realities that shape academic methodologies and institutions (for example: race; contingent faculty and labor; first generation academics; transnationalism and globalization; disability and access; inequalities related to gender, class, sexual identities, and religion; new technologies; funding changes).

    Will the SAA provide audio-visual equipment for my presentation?

    Audio visual requests must be made at program proposal time. For requests already approved, the SAA will provide a projector but not a computer. You will need to bring your laptop and the specific connector.

  • Digital Exhibits
    What are the Digital Exhibits?

    At the Annual Meeting, the SAA hosts an exhibit space for the demonstration of projects that draw on digital resources or integrate digital technology into scholarship, teaching, or public work on Shakespeare and his contemporaries.

    Projects are scholar-generated and address aspects of Shakespeare’s era, Shakespeare in performance, Shakespeare in print, and Shakespeare in translation, including work with text analytics, smartphone and tablet apps, digital archives, aids to performance, games and gamification, e-books, and website development.

    What digital projects have been exhibited?

    Click to see the titles of past Digital Exhibits.

    How do I apply for Digital Exhibits?

    Current SAA members are welcome to apply online to exhibit. Applications are accepted in the fall for exhibits at the next year’s Annual Meeting and will be reviewed by the SAA’s Digital Strategies Committee.

    I have a collaborative project. Who should I include in the proposal?

    You may include all those who take part in the digital project. If your proposal is accepted, you will need to confirm who will attend the Annual Meeting and only SAA members in good standing can be part of the program.

    What technical support will I get for Digital Exhibits?

    The SAA will provide power supply, a large monitor, and Wi-Fi connection. You will need to bring your own laptop. For specific requests, please contact the SAA office. Additional charges may apply.

    Can the same project apply to be exhibited again?

    If there is a major breakthrough in your digital project, you are welcome to apply again.

  • For Graduate Students
    What are the membership dues for graduate students?

    Dues are graduated according to annual income. Click to see the rates of membership dues.

    Do graduate students pay a lower registration fee for the Annual Meetings?

    Yes, the registration fee for graduate students is $95 for the 2021 Annual Meeting. The fee for faculty and postdoctorates is $165.

    Can graduate students speak at a paper session?

    Graduate students working on a dissertation can present a paper at a panel session.

    Can graduate student propose a paper session?

    No, but graduate students working on a dissertation can join a panel session proposal organized by a postdoctoral faculty member or independent scholar.

    Can graduate students enroll in a seminar or workshop?

    Graduate students working on a dissertation can enroll in seminars and workshops. Please provide the name and e-mail of your dissertation advisor when enrolling, and the SAA office with contact your advisor for verification of your status.

    Can graduate students propose a seminar or workshop?

    No, leadership of a seminar or workshop is reserved for those who have achieved the Ph.D. and for independent scholars who have a substantial history of publication and professional activity.

    Can graduate students participate at the Digital Exhibits?


    What is the Graduate-Student Breakfast?

    At each Annual Meeting, the SAA’s Board of Trustees hosts a breakfast for graduate students. This is a superb opportunity for you to meet SAA officers and your fellow graduate students.

    How do I apply for the Graduate-Student Travel Grants?

    Each year, the SAA awards travel grants to dissertation-candidate members. Awardees receive $400 in travel support and remission of the conference registration fee. Applicants must be SAA members in good standing, must take part in the meeting program (by speaking in a panel or enrolling in a seminar or workshop), and must attend the full conference. Students may not receive a travel award more than twice. Click for application details.

    What is the J. Leeds Barrol Dissertation Prize?

    The J. Leeds Barroll Dissertation Prize recognizes doctoral work with a significant Shakespeare component. Dissertations submitted for the 2021 prize must have been approved between 1 September 2019 and 1 September 2020. Applicants must be SAA members in good standing. Applications are comprised of three parts: an online application form, an anonymous cover, and twenty pages (maximum) from the introduction to the dissertation or from any chapter of the applicant’s choice. Click for application details.

    Does the SAA have a list for relevant fellowships and faculty job openings?

    Consult the Announcements for relevant fellowships and faculty job openings.