Dive Into SXSW EDU 2024 PanelPicker Trends

How to Build Meaningful Relationships with HBCUs - SXSW EDU 2023 - Photo by Melissa Bordeau

Year after year, the SXSW EDU program comes together with the support of the community. This year is no exception, as members of the community utilized PanelPicker’s two-step process to submit more than 1,600 session ideas during the entry window and cast more than 53,000 votes during the voting period.

With an increase in both proposals and votes this year, we are excited to provide you with a deeper look into PanelPicker by highlighting trends and insights from the community. Proposals spanned across the 12 thematic tracks that will organize the event’s program, with Teaching & Learning, Equity & Justice, Leadership for Tomorrow, and Work Reimagined receiving the highest number of proposals. Out of the seven session formats, most proposals were submitted as a Panel, Workshop, and Solo session.

Keyword Search Trends

Here are some top keywords used in proposals for SXSW EDU 2024:

  • Similar to last year, the most popular keyword is community with 324 proposals mentioning community in their description.
  • Reflected in 304 session proposals, there is a focus on improving and sharpening a range of skills.
  • Design is clearly top of mind, with 294 proposals referencing it in their descriptions.
  • Many ideas are looking towards the future, as mentioned in 293 session proposals.
  • This year, there is a big focus on making an impact, given the inclusion of the word in 226 proposals.
  • A large focus among 220 session proposals is on what you can create.
  • Change can be a good thing, and was mentioned in 210 proposals.
  • Used in 208 proposals, there is keen interest in the tools that we can use throughout education.
  • Given its potential for impact, AI was mentioned in 150 proposals.

Entries by Track

Accessibility & Inclusion

This year, 6% of proposals were in the Accessibility & Inclusion track, which covers initiatives and programs dedicated to special education, learning differences, neurodiversity, and disabilities throughout the learning journey. In this track, the most commonly used tags were diversity & inclusion, neurodiversity, and special education.

Arts & Storytelling

Arts & Storytelling explores arts-based teaching methods and creative practices, encompassing performing and visual arts, arts integration, media generation, and the convergence of STEM and STEAM. This track received 6% of proposals for SXSW EDU 2024. The top tags used in this track were storytelling, creativity, and student voice.

Community Initiatives

The Community Initiatives track, which made up 6% of proposals, pertains to initiatives aiming to empower and link communities both within and outside educational settings. The most commonly used tags were partnerships, diversity & inclusion, and experiential learning.

Equity & Justice

The second most popular track, with 12% of proposals, is Equity & Justice. This track involves tackling efforts that promote equity, justice, diversity, and inclusion in education and beyond, encompassing areas like social and economic disparities, culturally responsive teaching, and more. The tags diversity & inclusion, social justice, and student voice were frequently used in this track.

Future of Tech

This year, 9% of proposals were in Future of Tech. This track focuses on ensuring equitable access to technology and forward-looking solutions for its integration. The primary tags used in this track were artificial intelligence, edtech, and XR.

Global Initiatives

The Global Initiatives track, which delves into the significance of global collaboration in education and beyond, including international teaching methods, business ventures, language learning, and more, received 2% of the total proposals. The tags experiential learning, sustainability, and diversity & inclusion were most commonly used in this track.

Health & Wellbeing

Comprising 8% of this year’s total proposals, Health & Wellbeing covers mental and physical wellness, trauma-informed practices, and health education, particularly focusing on mental health initiatives for educators, students, and families. Popular tags used in this track were mental health, wellness, and SEL.

Leadership for Tomorrow

Representing 10% of proposals, Leadership for Tomorrow, is a new track for 2024 that concentrates on leadership development and institutional transformation. Administration, diversity & inclusion, and professional development were the top tags used in this track.

Policy & Civic Engagement

This year, 5% of proposals were in the Policy & Civic Engagement track, which delves into education policy matters across various governance levels, encompassing funding, curriculum standards, student data privacy, school safety, and digital policies. The most frequently used tags in this track were diversity & inclusion, justice, and partnerships.

Startups & Investment

Centered on the business of education, the Startups & Investments track emphasizes entrepreneurship and startups, and received 3% of proposals. The top tags in this track were entrepreneurship, edtech, and funding.

Teaching & Learning

The track with the most proposals this year was Teaching & Learning, with 23% of the total proposals. This track is focused on instructional strategies and pedagogy addressing innovative teaching methods, learner agency, child development, and instructional best practices for different educational levels, along with creative pedagogies and learning communities. Popular tags used in this track were curriculum design, instruction, and artificial intelligence.

Work Reimagined

The Work Reimagined track introduces novel approaches to professional development, upskilling, and talent development. This year, this track received 10% of proposals. The tags employability & talent development, diversity & inclusion, and professional development were most commonly used in this track.

Stay tuned for the biggest session announcement of the season in October to find out which ideas have been selected to take the SXSW EDU stage March 4-7, 2024 in Austin, Texas!

Join Your Community in March

Join us for SXSW EDU 2024 from March 4-7 in Austin, Texas. Don’t forget to register and book your hotel early, and subscribe to our newsletter to be the first to know of any event information leading up to the event.

Check out what’s new for SXSW EDU 2024 and learn about all the ways that you can get involved.

Photo by Melissa Bordeau

By Auva Saghafi