The 2023 South by Southwest EDU conference and festival begins March 6 and runs through March 9 each day from 9 a.m.-4 p.m., with a free day that is open to the public March 8.

SXSW EDU has nearly 400 sessions on tap covering a wide variety of subjects and formats from early childhood education and design-based learning to musical performances and fast-paced competitions, said Liz Stein, SXSW EDU press and publicity spokesperson.

"Attendees will have the chance to connect with professionals in the education space from around the world while interacting with more than 60 one-of-a-kind exhibits and presentations on a range of topics impacting how we learn, teach and engage," Stein said.

Those who plan to attend the sessions outside of March 8 will need to register for the conference and festival ahead of time. Registration includes being able to attend keynotes, featured sessions and workshops spanning 11 thematic tracks. Presenters include education professionals, industry leaders and policymakers. Also included is access to the expo with hundreds of interactive exhibits, along with networking events and professional development opportunities. Those who are unable to make it in person have the ability to view the online programming instead.

Ron Reed, founder and executive producer of SXSW EDU said the pandemic has helped to highlight the importance of education and educators' deep connection to their students and community.

"The SXSW EDU community consists of practicing educators, parents, businesses, nonprofits and foundations that help shape education by sharing best practices, promising research and innovative breakthroughs," Reed said. "Approximately 70% of our conference program is credentialed for continuing education credits for practicing educators, too."

Attendees should check the current status of a room or venue's remaining capacity by viewing the event status in the mobile app for either Android or iOS, the online SXSW EDU schedule, and on the digital event status boards located around the venues. The status of each event will be displayed using a green-yellow-red system, officials said, with green indicating there is plenty of room available, yellow indicating the room is nearly capacity, and red indicating the room is no longer accepting attendees.

Officials suggest packing comfortable clothing, including comfortable shoes, as those attending will get a lot of steps in from all the moving from session to session. Also recommended is bringing water bottles as there will be refill stations throughout the festival, a jacket as some of the venues can get cold, a portable battery charger to ensure devices stay charged throughout the duration of the day, and a notepad and pen to document takeaways from sessions.

A typical badge for the SXSW EDU sessions is $695; however, there are student rates and group rates available.

"Producing and hosting SXSW EDU is a labor of love for our team," Reed said. "We appreciate the education community, and welcome the opportunity to celebrate them and the important work they do. We crowdsource the majority of our program, so the content is truly reflective of the community's interests and priorities."