The 2023 Call for Abstracts
40th Annual Nursing & Health Care History Conference
Pittsburgh, PA
September 28 - 30, 2023

Deadline Submission EXTENDED Until March 19, 2023

The American Association for the History of Nursing is sponsoring the Association's 40th annual conference. The conference provides a forum for researchers interested in sharing new research that addresses events, issues, and topics in any area of nursing and healthcare history, broadly construed to encompass the history of nursing, global nursing history, nursing practice, healthcare institutions, caring, illness, healing work and public health. Submissions pertaining to all areas and regions of the world are welcome. Papers and posters that expand the horizons of nursing and healthcare history and engage related fields such as women's labor, technology, economic history, and race and gender studies are encouraged.

Guidelines for Submission

Individual Paper or Poster: A one-page abstract of a completed study will be accepted by email. Presentations are 20 minutes long with 10 minutes for questions. Abstracts must include:

  1. Overview of the topic, including the problem identified, the major actors, their interests and the historical period,
  2. Historiographical literature on the topic, contextualizing your story within the key texts and approaches in the field; how is your work different? What is its contribution?
  3. Methods, including primary sources, and perspective.
  4. Summary and Implications -- including your conclusion and the significance of your findings (5) If applicable, identify how your paper contributes to a more inclusive history of nursing or health care. (NOTE: This year we will also accept an abstract that uses the old guidelines, as we are phasing in the guidelines above.)
  5. Each section of the abstract should be clearly identified with these specific headers.

Panel: A panel consists of 3-5 persons addressing a common topic. Panels need to submit an abstract describing the overall topic with each presenter also submitting an abstract using the above guidelines. Each abstract will be judged on its own merits. Panels are 60 minutes in length. Abstracts should follow the same format requirements as papers/posters (see above).

Thematic Proposals: The organizer should submit a one-page abstract giving a short, clear statement of the purpose of the presentation. These presentations are intended not for original scholarship, but to address topics of broad interest such as new themes in historiography, teaching, research methods, and advocacy. Though limited to 60 minutes, they can include several speakers with a flexible format.

Abstract preparation: Submit a one-page Word document file which must fit one side of one 8.5" x 11" paper. Margins must be one and one-half inches on the left, and one inch on the right, top, and bottom. Center the title in upper case, and single space the body using 12-point Times (New Roman) font.

Submit two copies of your abstract; one must include the title, author's name(s), credentials, institutional affiliation, phone/fax and email. If more than one author is listed, indicate who is acting as the contact person. Indicate whether a paper, poster, panel or thematic presentation is sought. The second copy of the abstract should include only the title and mode of presentation with no other identifying information.

By submitting an abstract, you give permission to AAHN to use the work for educational purposes only. This includes, but is not limited to, inclusion in the conference program, posting to the AAHN website before and/or after the conference, and the use of excerpts or themes for conference marketing efforts.

**All presenters must be AAHN members in good standing and pay to attend the conference.

Bio Information and Consent Form

In addition to submitting the two versions of your abstract, you must complete a bio information form that can be accessed by clicking the button below.

Bio Info and Consent Form

Submission Deadline Extended Until MARCH 19, 2023

Abstracts must arrive on or before March 19, 2023 and should be submitted by clicking the button below or emailing [email protected].

Abstract results will be communicated to all submitters sometime in April.

Submit Abstracts to [email protected]

**Individuals are not required to be AAHN members at the time of submitting an abstract, but if accepted, you must join AAHN before registering for and presenting at the conference.

Tips On Abstract Preparation

Source: From Study to Abstract: The Art of Describing the Essence of a Study.
Panel Presentation at 35th Annual AAHN Research Conference, September 13-15, 2018.
Panel: Barbara Brodie, Wanda Hiestand, Judith Stanley, JoAnn Widerquist; Patricia D'Antonio, moderator.

  • Follow directions provided in the Call for Abstracts!
  • The abstract must be well written; the clarity of the writing mirrors your thinking.
  • Create an attractive, catchy title that captures the essence of the study.
  • Choose verbs carefully; aim for passionate phrases using concise language.
  • Write a good introductory paragraph which situates the study historically.
  • Provide some concrete details of the study to entice the reader to want to learn more.
  • List primary sources.
  • Historical research emphasizes conclusions.
  • Interweave research into today.
  • Have colleagues read the abstract before submission.

The Abstract Review Committee of AAHN uses a score sheet that emphasizes:

  • Clarity and focus
  • Manageable for presentation
  • Relevance for nursing history
  • Richness, complexity, and depth of analysis
  • Appropriateness of sources regarding interpretations
  • Adequacy of abstract
  • Originality of idea

Bibliography On Abstract Writing Compiled By Joann Widerquist, RN, DMIN, MA


Case, Donald Owen. The Collection and Use of Information by Some American Historians: a Study of Motives and Methods. Library Quarterly. January, 1991. p. 61-82.

Evans, Jane C. The Art of Writing Successful Research Abstracts. Neonatal Network: The Journal of Neonatal Nursing. 13 (5) August, 1994. p. 49-52.

Ferrell, Betty R. On Writing Abstracts. Oncology Nursing Forum. 15 (4) Jul/Aug, 1988. p. 515-516.

Fidel, Raya. Writing Abstracts for Free-text Searching. Journal of Documentation. 42 (1) March, 1986. p. 11-21.

Fuller, Ellen O. Preparing an Abstract of a Nursing Study. Nursing Research. 32 (8) Sept/Oct., 1983. p. 316-317.

Juhl, Nyla, & Norman, Virginia L. Writing an Effective Abstract. Applied Nursing Research 2 (4) November, 1989. p. 189-193.

Kaplan, Robert B.: Cantor, Selena; Hagstrom, Cynthia; Kamhi-Stein, Lia D.; Shiotani, Yumiko; and Zimmerman, Cheryl Boyd. On Abstract Writing. Text. 14 (3) 1994. p. 401-426.

Lindquist, Ruth. Strategies for Writing a Competitive Research Abstract. Dimensions Critical Care Nursing. 12 (1) Jan/Feb, 1993. p. 46-53.

Mendelson, Michael. Teaching the Abstract as an Introduction to Technical Writing. Technical Writing Teacher. 14 (1) Winter, 1987. p.1-10.

Murdaugh, Carolyn. Writing a Research Abstract. Progress in Cardiovascular Nursing. 3 (3) 1988. p. 29-31.

Oberst, Marilyn. Writing Functional Abstracts. Research in Nursing and Health. 17 (1) Feb., 1994. p.1.

Rogers, Bonnie. Writing Abstracts. AAOHN Journal. 38 (1) 1990. p. 40.

Vaughn, David K. Abstracts and Summaries: Some Clarifying Distinctions. Technical Writing Teacher. 18 (2) Spring, 1991. p. 132-141.

Waller, P.R. and Ropka, M.E. Disseminating Research: Writing Abstracts. Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDs Care. 4 (1) Jan/Mar, 1993. p.58-63.

Wheeler, James O. Writing Abstracts. Urban Geography. 17 (4) June, 1996. p. 283-285.


Cremmins, Edward T. The Art of Abstracting. Philadelphia: ISI Press. 1982.

Tibbo, Helen R. Abstracting, Information Retrieval and the Humanities: Providing Access to Historical Literature. Chicago and London: American Library Association. 1993.