CHI 2015 | Crossings | Seoul, Korea

April 18 - 23, 2015

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Authors | Student Design Competition : Call for Participation

Quick Facts

  • Important Dates:
    • Submission deadline: 5 January 2015 (5:00pm PST)
    • Notification deadline: 26 January 2015
    • Publication-ready deadline: 2 February 2015

  • Submission Details:
  • Selection process: Juried
  • Chairs: Youn-kyung Lim and Anirudha N. Joshi (
  • At the Conference: Accepted submissions will participate in a juried poster session. 4 teams will then be chosen to advance to the next round which will involve giving a short presentation.
  • Archives: Extended abstracts; posters; videos; USB and ACM Digital Library

Message from the Student Design Competition Chairs

This is the 13th year of the CHI Student Design Competition. The Student Design Competition continues to grow each year with increased international representation. The competition always draws a large audience at CHI and has also become a major recruiting opportunity for identifying talented students. In previous years, there have been over 60 international submissions from more than 10 countries and we hope to continue this trend in both submission numbers and quality. With your entries, we hope to make the first CHI Student Design Competition in Asia exciting, innovative, and attractive for all participants. We look forward to your entries.

New for CHI 2015:
  • This year we plan to have both posters and videos included in the ACM Digital Library along with the Extended Abstract.
  • A Video submission is required when you submit your Round One submission. Some videos may also be selected to be shown in the video showcase.
  • Student Design Competition submissions may be resubmitted to other design competitions (external to CHI).

Youn-kyung Lim, KAIST, Korea
Anirudha N. Joshi, IIT Bombay, India

What is the Student Design Competition?

The Student Design Competition is aimed at meeting three goals:

  • Provide an opportunity for students from a variety of design backgrounds (HCI, industrial design, product design, visual design, interaction design etc.) to participate in CHI and demonstrate their problem solving and design skills in an international competition against their peers.

  • Provide CHI attendees with refreshing perspectives on how design teams from different disciplines and different parts of the world approach a common design problem.

  • Provide CHI attendees with a chance to meet future professionals in our area, and provide competition participants with an opportunity to network with experienced HCI and Design professionals.

The Design Problem

The CHI 2015's theme is "crossings" which focuses on crossing the boundaries for meaningful new creations and possibilities. In this year's Student Design Competition, we adapt this theme of "crossings" and hope to open up the opportunities for students in the areas of HCI and Design from all over the world to show their visions and competence on enabling people from different cultures to be connected and to be heard and appreciated.

In the last few years, smart devices have become more or less standardized in their physical and graphical forms. While new groups of users are constantly emerging, quite a few people still stay away from the benefits of technology. The theme of this year's Student Design Competition is "Appropriating Technologies for New Cultures". We invite entries under this broad theme.

We are asking you to design a product, application, technology, or service that enable people who are a new and completely unexplored user group in any country to appropriate things and technologies around them. This user group may be a minority, an extreme case, or somehow disconnected from the mainstream. We ask you to showcase your best abilities of "maker cultures" to build new connections and to make less-voiced cultures be better heard. We ask you to use technology as a material for crafting and tinkering, and to make sure that you solve real problems, empower people in a unique way, and let them express their colors and needs.

For this year’s design problem, we particularly invite students’ careful considerations of the following criteria:

  • Does the solution solve a real problem of a real user group?
  • Is the user group disconnected from current technologies?
  • Does the solution use technology in a unique and creative way to solve the problem?
  • Were relevant prior works properly cited?
  • Were analysis, synthesis, design and evaluation sufficient and systematic?
  • Was the fidelity of the prototypes sufficient to demonstrate the ideas?
  • Was the solution well-presented?

Student Team Requirements

Teams must consist of at least two, but no more than five students. There is no limit to the number of teams that may compete from any given University or organization. However, one student cannot be part of multiple teams.

Submissions are invited from all students at all stages of their university careers, from undergraduate to postgraduate. While not a mandatory requirement, it is strongly encouraged that the teams put forward a multidisciplinary, multi-national team. 

Preparing and Submitting your Student Design Competition Submission

Student Design Competition submissions must be submitted via the  PCS Submission System by 5 January 2015, 5:00pm PST. The submission must have the following four components:  

  1. Extended Abstract.  Teams will submit a non-anonymized paper (6 pages maximum)  written in the Extended Abstracts Format summarizing their design solution and its evolution. Submissions not meeting the page limit or formatting requirements will be automatically disqualified. This document should be submitted as a single PDF and the file must be no larger than 4 Mb in size.

  2. Poster. The poster design should be reduced to one standard letter page in size and submitted in PDF format.

  3. Video. Teams must provide a supplementary video (MP$ file, max 5-minutes), with a file-size no larger than 100Mb, illustrating how your solution fits the lives of the users with the help of scenarios. It may also illustrate some details of the interface and the information presented. Please refer to the Video Showcase section for guidelines on the video submission.

  4. Proof of Student Status: submit a note signed by your academic supervisor verifying all of the following information:
    • your university

    • whether you were a graduate or undergraduate when the work was done

    • confirmation that you are currently registered in an academic program full-time (that at least 50% of their working week is spent following an academic course of study). Participants must be students pursuing an academic degree at the time of initial submission (Fall 2014). Transcripts or scanned IDs will not be accepted as a proof. All students must provide proof of their student status by the letter mentioned above. Each team must provide one proof package (a single file containing scanned signed letters for each team member) together with their project submission.

The Competition Structure

The competition follows a three-round process. Each round focuses on communicating the team's ideas through a different mode.

Round One: Extended Abstract and Supplementary Material

Teams will submit a short paper in Extended Abstracts Format (six pages maximum) summarizing their design solution and its evolution. Teams must provide supplementary material in form of at most 5-minute video. The video may illustrate how your solution fits the lives of the users with the help of scenarios. It may also illustrate some details of the interface and the information presented. Expert reviewers will evaluate submissions and a maximum of 12 teams will be selected to attend the CHI conference

The Extended Abstract should include:

  • A description of your chosen design focus and proposed solution, with a summary of the approaches taken within your design process, the real life problems that you are solving, and your main claims for your proposed solution with evaluation results
  • Reference to design principles, sources of inspiration, and HCI theory where appropriate and relevant
  • Acknowledgement of partial or incomplete solutions
  • Acknowledgement of any assistance drawn from outside the student team (advisors, faculty, domain experts, existing solutions, users, etc.)

The Supplementary Video Material may include:

  • Examples of significant contextual data and its analysis (primary, secondary research or both)
  • Key creative sources of design inspiration (existing designs and systems)
  • Sketches of the evolving solution
  • Scenarios depicting how the solution fits in the life of users and solves problems / engages them / entertains them
  • Details of the interface and information design where relevant
  • Highlights of significant evaluation results

All submissions must be in English and must include title and author information, including author affiliations. Please be sure that submissions do not contain proprietary or confidential material and do not cite proprietary or confidential publications. Due to tight publication schedules, revisions to the extended abstract will not be possible. The submitted PDF version should be camera-ready final version.

Round Two: Poster

Accepted teams will be expected to attend the conference to give a poster presentation outlining their design, and discuss their proposed solution with a panel of Student Design Competition Judges. A scheduled 80-minute poster presentation event will take place during the conference. Student teams will be expected to host their posters and discuss their approach, design method and solutions with the Student Design Competition Judges. The competition judges will select four teams to present their proposed solutions orally during a scheduled presentation session named "Student Design Competition Final". Teams will be also provided space in the convention center to display posters and discuss their proposed solutions with the CHI 2015 attendees.

Specific guidelines for preparing posters:

  • Each poster will have a display space approximately 8 feet wide and 4 feet high.
  • The poster is expected to follow the International Standards Organization (ISO) poster size format (A0). The dimensions for A0 format are 84cm x 119cm, or approximately 33" x 47". Either landscape or portrait orientation is acceptable.
  • Audiovisual and computing equipment will not be supplied. Power outlets will not be available. The participants may include QR codes in the poster to link to supplementary material online (such as scenario videos or interactive prototypes).

The poster must include:

  • The proposed solution's name, team name, school affiliation
  • The perspective taken to address the design challenge
  • A concise description of the proposed solution
  • Clear illustrations of key aspects of your proposed solution
  • Compelling, effective visual design

Round Three: Presentation

The four teams selected by the judges following the Poster Presentations will present their design process and solution during a short presentation to the Judges and CHI attendees. Presentations will be limited to 10 minutes plus a subsequent 5 minutes to answer questions from the judges and audience. Presentations must include:

  • The design process that was followed
  • A concise description of the proposed solution
  • Reference to design principles and theory where appropriate
  • Acknowledgement of partial or incomplete solutions

Student Design Competition Selection Process

Each team's short paper submission will be reviewed by both academic and professional design and usability experts.

Round one, the written submission, will be reviewed based on:

  • Use of appropriate design methods such as ethnography, contextual research, phenomenological/autobiographical methods, secondary research, reflection, critique, analysis, and empirical evaluation.
  • Clarity and credibility of design focus, purpose and solution relative to the posed challenge.
  • Originality and quality of the design solution, including claims and their supporting evidence.
  • Innovation within the design process.
  • Quality of design management.
  • Clarity of extended abstract and supplementary material.

Round two, the poster submission, will be judged based on:

  • Clear communication of key aspects of solution
  • Clear communication of design approaches
  • Clear communication of arguments for proposed solution
  • Craft quality of the solution

Round three, the presentation, will be judged based on:

  • Clarity and organization of the oral presentation
  • Relevance and clarity of presentation material (slides, video, etc)
  • Quality of argument used to justify why the solution is worthy of consideration
  • Quality, originality and relevance of design solution
Submissions should not contain sensitive, private, or proprietary information that cannot be disclosed at publication time.  Submissions should NOT be anonymous. However, confidentiality of submissions will be maintained during the review process. All rejected submissions will be kept confidential in perpetuity. All submitted materials for accepted submissions will be kept confidential until the start of the conference, with the exception of title and author information which will be published on the website prior to the conference. 

The top four entries to the Student Competition earn a Certificate of Recognition. The winning entry will be recognized during the closing plenary session of the CHI 2015 conference.

Upon Acceptance of your Student Design Competition

Student Design Competition authors will be notified of acceptance or rejection by 26 January, 2015.

Authors of all accepted submissions will receive instructions on how to submit the publication-ready copy of their Extended Abstract, Poster Design, and Video. Publication-ready submissions are due on 2 February 2015.

At the Conference

Submissions selected for round two of the competition will be evaluated during a poster session at CHI 2015. Based on the results from the poster session, the judges will select four teams to advance to the final round. During the final round, students will have the opportunity to give a short presentation of their research (10 minutes) followed by a question and answer period (5 minutes), which will be evaluated by a panel of judges. Winners will be announced during the closing plenary.

After the Conference

Accepted Student Design Competition papers, posters, and videos will be distributed in the CHI Conference Extended Abstracts, available on USB and in the ACM Digital Library. 

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