Metro News: Calgary students team with programmers to create education app

By: Aaron Chatha, Metro News Published on Sun Oct 18 2015

The organizers of the Edu App Challenge have one goal in mind: fill the technology gaps in education with input from their greatest resource – the students.

On November 6 to 8, students will join forces with professional developers, designers, teachers and entrepreneurs to create a prototype app within 48 hours.

What kind of app? That depends entirely on the students.

Representatives from Calgary schools will be on hand to talk about education problems regarding technology, and then pitches will be heard on how to address those problems.

I think because it’s going to come from the community, really from students and teachers, these will be ideas of substance. It’s not coming from just one person, but it’s a community driven app, and I think that’s what we need to really break open this education tech space.
— Hannah Cree, organizer of EDU App Challenge

The best pitches will be accepted, and groups will be formed from a balance of students, teachers and developers. Cree said many students are already very in tune with technology, but they may not be using it in the most productive ways.

There’s a lot of fears kids will just surf Facebook and Instagram, and those fears are because that’s what their parents do. So, we want to create interactive apps the make them think and change and edit, and employ critical thinking.
— Cree explained.

During the challenge, industry professional, from sectors including arts, education, technology and sales, will drop in to chat and mentor students. When it’s over, the groups will present their prototypes to a panel of judges, who will award $10,000 in prizes.

Registration is available to anyone older than 14 at www.eduappchallenge.org.