Who’s Who at SXSWedu 2015

Who's Who at SXSWedu 2015

The power of good professional development (PD) is no secret. But what is “good” PD? Research and surveys have shown that teachers respond best to interactive, robust, and personalized forms of PD where they are able to take control and ownership of their own learning. Often referred to as DIY PD, examples include engaging in social media communities, or attending community-build conferences and seminars. What’s even better is when you combine the two, resulting in SXSWedu.

The SXSWedu Conference and Festival (March 9-12, 2015) is an annual four-day education conference held in Austin, Texas that combines social media, community building, and interactive professional development. As noted on their site, SXSWedu “affords registrants open access to engaging sessions, interactive workshops, hands on learning experiences, cinematic portrayals, early stage startups and a host of networking opportunities.”

SXSWedu’s focus on diversity and change is a driving force throughout the conference, hosting an eclectic collection of workshops and panel discussions with talks ranging from Resume and Career Development for Teachers to The Importance of Music in the Classroom to Shark Tank: Edu Edition. This year’s conference will also be home to a collection of unique perspectives on education, including Goldie Hawn, Sal Khan from Khan Academy, and Guy Kawasaki.

This will be Teach.com’s first year attending SXSWedu, and we are thrilled to spend the week among such innovative thought leaders in the education space. Inspired by the conference’s collection of diverse topics and voices, we interviewed key speakers and attendees from this year’s conference and asked them one question: "What do you hope to learn at this year's SXSWedu?"

The feedback was thoughtful and inspiring, and is made up of a diverse audience including teachers, educators, journalists, entrepreneurs, and students. Read on below to hear innovative insight from key players in the education community:










What do you hope to learn at this year’s SXSWedu?


Anya Kamenetz NPR Education






Bernard Bull, Concordia University

>Connect: Etale, @bdean1000


Helena Seli, USC Rossier

Connect: USC Rossier Faculty and Research


Aisling Niestroy, Graduate Assistant

Connect: @aislingclare27




Dana Grossman Leeman, Simmons

Connect: Simmons, @leeman_dana




Chip Paucek SXSWedu

Connect: 2U, Inc., @chippaucek

Michelle King, Teacher


Shawn Nason, Xavier

Connect: Xavier University, @XavierInnov8


Mary Jo Madda, EdSurge

Connect: EdSurge, @MJMadda


Will you be attending this year’s SXSWedu? Here are some tips before you go:

  • Stay organized! Download our SXSWedu Personal Schedule to plan out and keep track of your talks, lounges and playgrounds throughout the week. Also, be sure to double check USC Rossier’s SXSWedu Survival Guide to make the most of your time.
  • Stay connected with us on Twitter, we’ll be livetweeting the events at @teachdotcom and @USCTeacher with the hashtag #SXSWedu and check back on our blog throughout the week for recaps of the week's events.

Follow @teachdotcom on social