Digital Design Challenge sparks bright ideas

More than 300 students from 50 schools around Australia will take part in this year’s 9th annual International Secondary Schools Digital Design Challenge.

The competition will be hosted by the Queensland College of Art Griffith University (QCA) in Brisbane on July 19.

Within just three hours students will have to conceptualise a product and then design it using the computer software of their choice.

Students are able to compete at QCA, while those from further away can undertake the challenge at their school and submit entries online. This year also includes entries from Singaporean and New Zealand schools.

Competition manager, Design lecturer Larry Vint, said students would receive a design brief and then be assessed on their creativity and innovation in tackling the problem and their technical skills used in illustrating the design and presentation of their plan.

This year’s challenge theme is to demonstrate to the community how households can improve water conservation.

“Students can do any amount of sketching and planning with pencil and paper first, and then complete the design exercise using their computer,” Mr Vint said.

He said the competition was designed so teachers benefited as much as students.

“Teachers are able to mingle and discuss work programs, software programs, the results they have achieved, teaching strategies, classroom layouts, operating systems, network issues and student projects.”

The 2007 winners will be announced at a ceremony at QCA on Friday, August 24 where judges — all members of the Design Institute of Australia — will give feedback to competitors.