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Congressional App Challenge

The Congressional App Challenge
This year will mark the Second Annual Congressional App Challenge, which was established by Congress in 2013.  Similar to the Congressional Art Competition, the Congressional App Challenge tasks high school students in each Congressional district with a specific project and objective in related Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields.  

This year’s competition:
Participating students will develop an app on a platform of their choice (iPhone, Android, Linux, etc.).

All completed applications will be submitted via video presentation no longer than four minutes, to be reviewed by a panel of judges based on the following criteria:

o   Quality of the idea (creativity/originality)
o   Implementation of the idea (user experience/design)
o   Demonstrated excellence of coding and programming skills 

Participation and Rules:
The competition is open to all students who are at least 13 years of age (as of November 9th, 2015) and are eligible to enroll in a high school located in Virginia’s Fourth Congressional District.

If students attend school outside of their home congressional district, they may compete in either their home district or their school district.

Participants may compete individually or in teams of up to 4 students.

If a team wishes to enter the competition, at least 2 members of the team must be eligible to enter in the 4th Congressional District of Virginia.

November 9th – Contest opens (Students able to submit apps)
January 15th  – Contest closes  (Deadline for entry submissions)
February 22nd   – Competition winner(s) selected and notified 

Contest Registration and Guidelines
During the Competition Submission Period, participating students must complete a digital student contact form and create an account on www.challenge.gov and register for the Congressional App Challenge.  In providing a complete submission, each contestant (or one representative from a team) will be required to provide a link to a video no longer than 4 minutes that explains what the app does, what tools were used to create the app, and how it works. Once the app has been submitted, students will receive an exit questionnaire, through email, which must be completed in order to conclude the submission process. After the submission period has ended, the submission cannot be modified in any way before the completion of judging.  More information pertaining to online requirements and compatibility can be obtained at www.challenge.gov. All entries must be an original in concept, design, and execution.

To Register:
To enter, the student must create an account on www.challenge.gov and then register for the House Student App Contest under their participating Member of Congress’ profile during the Competition Submission Period. Students must all complete a Congressional App Challenge Student Sign-Up Form. All entries must be an original in concept, design and execution.

  1. Register for the House Student App Challenge
  2. Complete a Congressional App Challenge Student Contact Form
  3. Submit completed app and demonstration video
  4. Complete exit questionnaire


Resources for Students and Teachers
36 Resources To Help You Teach Kids Programming
CodeAcademy.COM self-taught courses in HTML/CSS, Python, Ruby, and PHP
MIT App Inventor tutorial to develop mobile apps on Android phones.
Scratch a simple visual programming language 
Alice is used to create 3D animations 

Development Kits: 
Apple iOS Developer Program
Android- Develop for Android
Windows Apps


 For questions about the competition or more information, please contact Nicole Bunce at 804-318-1363

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