Design brief

The 2018 brief: Quality Education

In 2015 the United Nations set a global agenda, Sustainable Development Goals, that address the world’s most wicked problems and prioritizes them to find solutions by 2030. With the support of Microsoft Design, we chose the SDGs for this year’s Student Design Challenge because we believe that design has a role to play in finding these solutions. Specifically, Human-Centered, Inclusive Design means designing for billions of people, and yet still have an impact for an individual. It seeks to reduce friction, increase access, and, create a lasting effect on people. Your creative and bold contributions are needed to demonstrate the power of design for good.

There are 17 SDGs and we urge you inform yourselves about all of them, but for this brief we will be working specifically with Quality Education.

There is a huge global education gap today rooted in many factors including lack of access to resources, materials, and opportunity. There’s a mismatch between the needs of people who want to learn and the tools, services, and, social structures available. Many individuals and communities are excluded today from receiving a quality education. Designing for inclusive, quality education means considering many shifting physical, social, environmental, and technological contexts.

We asked students to think about this challenge by starting with a specific form of exclusion: socio-economic, cultural, gender, emotional, physical or cognitive disability, etc. You can think about education projects through the lens of learning experiences for students, tools for teachers, or solutions for communities that address Gender Equality, Climate Action or other social aspects of the development goals. We want the impact to be motivated by positive influences, promote socially responsible behaviour changes and represent sustainable patterns which can be amplified, and, scaled over time.

Some examples of projects and products that respond to this challenge in radically different ways are:

How finalists are recognized

Our panel of judges awarded the most promising finalists a scholarship to attend Interaction 18 in Lyon, including: * Travel & Accommodation Lyon, France * Complimentary student registration at the conference * Mentorship and support during prototyping and iteration at the conference * A chance to meet and showcase your work in front of the best interaction designers in the world.

How we worked

The Student Design Charette is a perpetual work in progress that aims to respond to the shifts and evolving needs in our community. For 2018, we looked for applicants to demonstrate their unique talent and articulate a point of view regarding the role of interaction design in driving the Education agenda in their submission.

In Lyon, finalists were assigned teams and received a specific brief to work on during a 72-hour workshop.

At the conference, they were mentored and had the opportunity to present their work from the session in front of 1000 future colleagues.


  • November 23 Submissions Open
  • December 18 Submissions Deadline
  • December 25 Extended Submissions Deadline
  • January 4 Finalists announced
  • February 5-8 Finalists at Interaction18
  • February 8 Winner Announced

Who Is Eligible

The Charatte was open to both graduates and undergraduates. Participants were currently enrolled in or had graduated in 2017 from a program or course in interaction design or a related design field. Only individual applications were considered.

Since not all parts of the world have formal IxD programs, if applicants worked in interaction design and were a graduate or undergraduate student in any field, they could also participate.


This year’s submissions included two elements, a video and portfolio.

They were submitted through the Submittable platform


A video, 4 minutes or less in length, was submitted. We encouraged a custom video Student Design Challenge submissios, although elements from any previous work could be reused. The judges looked for interaction/ experience design ability and how applicants communicated thier thinking on the theme, rather than examining any design work done to create solutions around the theme. Team projects were welcome, but we asked applicants to let us know their role on the team.

The video must include:


We asked for examples of creative craft and ability to make an impact in the world through design. We were looking for personality and perspective, and waht applicants were passionate about!

A PDF or web link showed projects demonstrating: * Challenge/Opportunity space explored * Role(s) played in team projects * Examples of Creative Process * Final Outcomes


Sponsors, Microsoft Design

Code of Conduct   —   Copyright 2004 › 2018 Interaction Design Association   —   Credits   •   Media