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Conference Proceedings

A guide to conference proceedings: what they are, where they come from, how to find them.


A conference proceeding is the published record of a conference, congress, symposium, or other meeting sponsored by a society or association, usually but not necessarily including abstracts or reports of papers presented by the participants. When the entire text of the papers presented is included, the result is called transactions. 

Reasons to Use

1. Engage with Leading Edge Research

Conference proceeding are a way to engage with leading edge research prior to official journal publication.  They may include: findings, innovations, best practices, or new methodology (especially in science & engineering)

2. Informally Present Research 

Conference proceedings allow researcher to explain their research in a less formal setting than peer reviewed journals.

3. Present New Ideas

Conference proceeding allow researchers to present new concepts and techniques in a field which are not fully developed.  This allows other researchers to be involved and influence the direction of research at the early stages.

4. Connect

If you are new to a field of research conference proceedings can help connect you with research, researchers, research teams or institutions doing research on topic of interest.

How to Evaluate

Think critically about web sites and print resources.  

  • AuthorityWho is the author or creator?  What are their credentials for this topic?
  • Content: What is the author's bias? Who was the information written for?
  • CurrencyWhat is the publication date?  When was the website last updated? Does this matter for your topic?
  • ValidityIs the information accurate or valid?  Are there references to other works that support the information?
  • Publisher: Do they have a good reputation?