Educational conferences are great places to connect with like-minded people and hone your professional skills as a teacher or administrator. There are many great U.S.-based conferences scheduled for the upcoming school year — ranging from grade-level focused events to edtech.
Here are 16 that will be useful for anyone involved in education:
- 2019 iNACOL Symposium
- Learning & the Brain
- LearnLaunch Across Boundaries
- Opening Minds 2020
- 2020 TCEA Convention and Exposition
- SXSW EDU 2020
- ASCD Empower 20
- DL 2020
- Learning Solutions Conference & Expo
- OLC Innovate
- Teach Tech
Oct 25–26, 2019, Miami (and online)
EdmodoCon is unique among EdTech conferences in that it’s held both in person and virtually. Online attendees can view the conference both live and through recorded footage uploaded after the conference is over. 2019’s EdmodoCon focuses on helping educators “discover valuable new resources for social and emotional learning, digital citizenship, and student engagement.”
2019 iNACOL Symposium
October 28–31, 2019, Palm Springs, California
The iNACOL Symposium is a large annual conference for K–12 competency-based educators. It features more than 200 sessions and attracts over 3,500 educators, policy makers, and researchers.
The theme for 2019 is “Shining a Light on the Future of Learning.” For those interested in learning about personalized competency-based education at the micro or macro level, this is the conference to attend.
November 7–9, 2019, Nashville
The Annual Conference for Middle Level Education is for educators and school professionals who work with youth in grades 5–9.
Sessions designed for teachers will cover topics such as project-based learning, differentiated instruction, literacy, and STEM. For principals and administrators, sessions will focus on school improvement and building safe school cultures.
This conference is a great way to connect with other educators in the middle school realm, while also taking home practical tips and intervention strategies.
Learning & the Brain
November 22–24, 2019, Boston
Education conference organizer Learning & the Brain is celebrating its twentieth year exploring the science of effective teaching. The theme for November’s conference is Learning How to Learn.
Presenters are researchers dedicated to evidence-based practices for engaging students in deeper learning. Sessions will explore the science of deeper learning, bringing relevance and meaning to the classroom, deeper reading, and STEM learning.
If you can’t make it in November, Learning & the Brain is hosting three conferences in 2020.
LearnLaunch Across Boundaries
January 30–31, 2020, Boston
LearnLaunch Across Boundaries is an education innovation event that explores “the cutting edge of learning and teaching with educators, entrepreneurs, investors, and innovators” and spans grade levels. You can expect to hear insights from a wide range of sources, including early-stage startups, executives, university leaders, and even high school students.
Opening Minds 2020
January 29–February 1, 2020, Chicago
The Opening Minds Early Education Conference is for anyone who works with young children to come together and learn from each other. The conference isn’t limited to teachers and school leaders — it’s open to professionals in public policy, health, social services, libraries, and relevant businesses. Teachers will gain practical insights and discover the latest research in child development to help engage their students more holistically.
2020 TCEA Convention and Exposition
February 3–7, 2020, Austin
The annual TCEA Convention is designed for educators seeking ways to incorporate tech into the classroom effectively. There will be more than 1,000 presentations and 450 exhibitors showcasing products for the classroom.
This large gathering features hands-on workshops, solution circles, an “interactive learning playground,” and much more. Participants will explore how they can improve outcomes in the classroom and at the school and district levels.
SXSW EDU 2020
March 9–12, 2020, Austin
The SXSW EDU conference and festival is an annual event that celebrates innovations in learning. Registration for the 2020 conference opens on August 1, 2019.
Educators will connect with others to explore topics such as accessibility and inclusion, arts, K–12 learning, adult learning, SEL, equity, and emerging tech through a wide range of sessions, films, and competitions.
This gathering started out as a regional event but now attracts participants from over 40 countries. It’s an exciting place to collaborate and ideate about the future of education.
ASCD Empower 20
March 14–16, 2020, Los Angeles
The annual ASCD Empower conference is designed for all educators. More than 200 sessions will cover practical strategies for teachers and school staff.
Previous sessions have focused on culturally responsive teaching, youth and social justice, bullying prevention, and how to make teaching fun again. Attendees will receive a certificate of attendance and may be eligible for academic graduate credits.
March 25–27, 2020, San Diego
DL 2020 will be the eighth annual conference where educators come together to explore deeper learning, strive for equity in education, and learn how to improve teaching practices. This gathering will explore how school administrators can facilitate deeper learning on campus as well as how teachers can bring deeper learning to the classroom and make deeper learning more accessible for all students.
Learning Solutions Conference & Expo
March 31–April 2, 2020, Orlando, Florida
Aimed at eLearning professionals, the Learning Solutions Conference and Expo is for sharing what works, finding solutions to everyday learning challenges, and “[making] strides to move learning and development forward.” The conference features over 150 sessions presented by industry experts and an expo of numerous suppliers offering learning technologies, tools, and products.
March 31–April 3, 2020, Chicago
OLCInnovate is for those passionate about innovation in the online higher education sphere. This conference covers new technology, intelligent learning management systems, and how to design blended classrooms with the most progressive pedagogy.
If you want to explore disruptions in online learning with like-minded researchers and professionals, this is your place. Sessions are designed to be hands-on and organic; participants share their own ideas and experiences to impact digital learning environments.
April 5–8, 2020, Chicago
The Association of Technology Leaders in Independent Schools (ATLIS) hosts its annual EdTech conference at different locations across the U.S. The 2019 conference was held in Texas, with the main theme exploring the combination of humans and technology — aptly titled “Deep in the Heart of TECHness.” ATLIS says their conference is “the only [one] focused solely on the independent school technology community.”
June 28 – July 1, 2020, Anaheim, California
The International Society for Technology in Education hosts the ISTE Conference and Expo, a two-day, interactive, media-rich, and vibrant professional development learning experience. The 2019 conference included sessions on competency-based professional learning, ways to use memes in the classroom, and coding for students with special needs as well as hackathons and scavenger hunts.
Summer 2020, Memphis, Tennessee
Teach Tech is a professional development conference that focuses on practical technology and learning resources in the classroom. Workshops are led by educators who actively use the tools and strategies they talk about. Sessions cover a broad range of topics: AR/VR in the classroom, developing a student media program, podcasting, using visual media to teach inference and analysis, the outdoor classroom, and many more.
Various dates and locations
Edcamps are designed for those who aren’t interested in attending a large conference but still want to connect with other teachers in meaningful ways. Founded on an “un-conference” model, Edcamps are free professional development opportunities led by participants.
Unlike the other large conferences that are hosted annually and include many big-name speakers, Edcamp takes a more organic approach. These gatherings are led by experienced teachers and are designed for teachers who want to improve their teaching in practical ways.
Edcamps take place throughout the year and in different locations across the country. They are great for teachers who want to stay local and within a budget.