STEM Competition

House App Contest

This year marks the first annual Congressional Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Academic Competition, the “House App Contest.”  This new competition is designed to engage student’s creativity and encourage their participation in STEM education fields.  Established by Members of the U.S. House of Representatives in 2013, this competition is a nationwide event that allows high school students from across the country to compete by creating and exhibiting their software application, or “app,” for mobile, tablet, or computer devices on a platform of their choice.  Throughout the completion period, participating students will be provided opportunities to engage with various STEM educational partners located within the community to mentor and assist them with their app development.  

The “House App Contest” is open to all high school students in the 19th district of California. Students entering the competition must submit their app’s source code online during the Competition Submission Period between 12 PM Eastern Standard Time on FEBRUARY 1ST, 2014, and 11:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time on APRIL 30TH, 2014, as well as provide a YouTube or VIMEO video demo explaining their app and what they learned through this competition process.

Can I Participate?

  1. Members of Congress must opt-in for their district to participate in this competition. If a Member does not opt-in, constituents in their district will be ineligible to participate. Find out if I am eligible.
  2. The Competition is open only to high school students who reside in a participating district or who are eligible to attend public high school in that district. Individuals submitting on behalf of teams must meet the eligibility requirements for individual Contestants

To Register

To enter, the student must create an account on and then register for the House Student App Contest under their participating Member of Congress’ profile during the Competition Submission Period. All entries must be an original in concept, design and execution.

  1. Register for the House Student App Challenge
  2. Register at

Resources for Students and Teachers

Development Kits

Software design tools

Design tools are used to support the application design process before actual coding of the application. One artifact in app design is called a wireframe. Creating a wireframe as part of the design process can help you to design a visually attractive and functional app. Read an introduction to web wireframes.

Free Wireframe Resources

Software design tools vary widely in terms of their features and the time required to become productive. You may want to take a look at several tools to find one that is a good fit for your skills and project.

Free Graphic Design Resources

PSD stands for ‘Photoshop Document’. It is the default Photoshop file format and is widely used and supported to some extent by competing programs.


  1. Understand the copyright and terms of use before using design or template resources in your House Student App Challenge project. Most of these are free for non-commercial projects but may require attribution. In your contest submission document the resources you used to create the app.
  2. This list is a sample of available tools. There are many more resources available on the web. Feel free to search for additional resources.