There are a number of differences among the genealogy conferences with individual classes being offered concurrently, requiring attendees to make choices (including lectures, workshops, and track sessions on specific topics or by specific organizations); webinars, that offer single lectures by single presenters (but with the large number available from different sources at different costs or, in some cases, no charge); and institutes, requiring pre-registration, that focus on a single topic with intense instruction - including homework, in most cases (a bit more costly but usually last 5 days with one or more facilitators/instructors and usually inclulding a completion certificate at the conclusion of the event).
Due to the pandemic, a number of conferences and institutes are being presented in virtual format. This is much more desirable for many folks since it means taking advantage of these forms of education with no additional cost for hotels, travel, or costly meals. There is a lack of one-on-one networking, but anything that is "live-streamed" usually includes some Q/A. Sara and Jean look at the pros and cons of the different forms of genealogy education and how to prepare for some of the options.
Federation of Genealogy Societies (FGS) - 2-15 September 2020 (all virtual; registration open)
Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (registration opens on 8 August 2020, event on 10-15 January 2021 plus other events occurring at other times)
So. Calif. Genealogical Society (webinars & Jamboree - scheduled for 2022; virtual event in 2021)
National Institute on Genealogical Research; now Gen-Fed (event cancelled for 2020)
Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (watch website for 2021 registration; event to be held about this time next year)
Check for webinars and other virtual conferences at:
Free videos under "Help Center" - ? icon - at FamilySearch.org