Registration opens in May TAPIA 2020 Dallas,TX September 16-19, 2020

2020 Tapia Conference

Accessibility at Tapia 2020

Since 2001, the Tapia conferences have brought together students, faculty, and professionals to celebrate the technical contributions and career interests of the most diverse people in computing fields. To do so, the conference seeks to be accessible. During registration, you will be able to request accommodations. More information about accessibility at the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center is available on their accessibility information page. If you have additional questions or concerns about accessibility, contact us.

Q: What can attendees do to make the conference welcoming and accessible to people with disabilities?

A: We aim to make this conference a welcoming, inclusive event. As an attendee, you play a very important role in this. For example, we can all commit to using a microphone when we ask questions, so that everyone can hear.

We are a neurodiverse community, and we don’t all communicate and express ourselves the same way. Some people prefer direct, literal communication and others talk in idioms and metaphors. Some people need extra time to process and respond. Communication is a two-way process, so let’s be flexible and accommodate different communication styles. Sometimes a person may need to leave in the middle of a session, flap their hands, pace up and down, or go to a quiet space, and that’s ok. So if someone’s behavior seems strange to you, don’t make assumptions—talk to them directly.

Some of us are more sensitive to smells, sounds, and/or lights than others. Please do not use flash photography as this can induce migraines. Please avoid wearing strong perfume or aftershave at the conference. Be aware of attendees using canes or wheelchairs and give them room to get around. Offer an aisle seat if someone needs it. Raise your hand and ask the presenter to describe what’s happening in their silent video, for the benefit of those who can’t see it. These are the actions that add up to a truly inclusive event where we all feel welcome. Let’s make this conference an amazing experience for everyone!

Q: How do I communicate accessibility needs to the Tapia 2020 organizers?

A: When you register for the conference, there will be a question asking about any accessibility needs. In your response, please indicate any accessibility needs such as wheelchair access, sign language interpretation, or a guide. Organizers will follow up with you to clarify your needs. If you have any questions about accommodations, please contact us. After the deadline for early registration, a best effort will be made to accommodate requests, but we cannot guarantee that interpreters or captioners will be available.

Q: Will sign language interpretation or captioning be available?

A: The conference will provide sign language interpreters or captioners if requested by any attendees during registration. Organizers will follow up with you to discuss your needs in more detail.

Q: Can a student volunteer assist me during the conference?

Student volunteers will be available to assist attendees with disabilities with navigation, meal service, or other accessibility needs. If you will need volunteer assistance at the conference, please indicate this on your conference registration form.

Attendees who require personal care assistance should bring their own assistant. Personal care assistants do not need to register for the conference unless they are planning on having food or drink provided by the conference (i.e. coffee/tea breaks, lunches, receptions, etc.).

Q: What if I experience harassment at the conference?

A: As stated in the Tapia Conference Code of Conduct and Anti-Harassment Policy, CMD-IT and ACM are dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for participants at our events and in our programs. If you believe that you have been harassed at the Tapia Conference, or notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other related concerns, you are encouraged to report the incident in confidence to the conference organizers, and you can notify us at the Registration Desk.

Q: What are accessible transportation options for getting to the conference venue?

A: Please see Tapia’s Venue & Travel page for general travel information. In addition, please see these accessibility-related travel information:

Accessibility at the Dallas airport

Accessible shared ride shuttle service is available via Super Shuttle (

Accessible public transit information

Q: Are there all-gender restrooms?

A: We are uncertain whether we will have all-gender restrooms at Tapia 2020. We will update this FAQ when we have more information.

Q: Is there a lactation room available?

A. Yes. Please inquire at the Tapia 2020 information desk for usage of the lactation room.

Q: Is there a quiet room available?

A: We are hoping to secure space for a quiet room at Tapia 2020. We will update this FAQ when we have more information.

Q: Will there be any offsite events/venues?

A: Sponsors may hold events offsite during Tapia. If you are invited to attend a sponsor event please contact sponsors directly with any concerns about accessibility.

Q: What is the layout of the conference venue? Where are the elevators and stairs?

A: Floor plans of the Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center meeting rooms are available on the Marriott website and will be available in the conference printed program and conference app. If you need additional information, please contact the Tapia Conference.

Q: Will the conference be a smoke-free environment?

A: There is no smoking inside the conference hotel.

Q: Will there be microphones for attendees in session rooms?

A: Yes. Guidelines request that attendees always use microphones for the benefit of those who are hard of hearing.

Q: Is there an option to attend the conference remotely by robots (e.g., Beams)?

A: We are sorry, but Tapia 2020 will not be able to provide remote attendance by robot.

Q: Does the conference hotel have any areas with an induction loop for hearing assistance?

A: We are working to get information about whether there are any induction loops. We will update this FAQ when we have more information.

Q: Is the conference app, Whova, accessible?

A: Whova is accessible and we have provided feedback to the developer for additional accessibility updates. Whova has committed to making accessibility improvements to the app.

Q: What are the arrangements for presenters with accessibility needs?

A: We do not have ramps in all of the breakout rooms. If you are a presenter who needs a ramp, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can make arrangements. Poster sessions will have space for wheelchairs and mobility devices to move between the posters.

If you would like a student volunteer to operate slides or guide you onto and off the stage, or have other accessibility requests please include information in your conference registration. If you forget to include information in your registration please use the Tapia Conference Contact form for any requests.

Q: Can I bring my guide dog?

A: Yes! Guide dogs and other service animals are welcome at Tapia 2020.

Q: Will there be loud music, strobe lighting, spotlights, or other strong sensory experiences?

A: The event photographer typically uses flash photography. The main conference room which hosts the plenary sessions uses spotlights. The closing awards ceremony will include the use of spotlights. The dance following the closing reception will use spotlights and loud music. There may also be a photo station featuring a photographer during the dance, which will include flash photography. Please use the Tapia Conference Contact form for additional questions.

Q: What food service will be provided?

A: The conference will provide receptions, buffet lunches and refreshments at breaks. Dishes will be labeled. If you have special dietary needs, please indicate these clearly on your registration form.

Q: Can the conference accommodate special dietary needs?

A: The conference will try to accommodate special dietary requirements. If we are unable to accommodate your needs a conference staff member will contact you. You may indicate special dietary and/or severe allergy needs on your registration form.