2011 Video Topics
Many of the greatest innovations of our time were first designed to solve a simple problem. This year's Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge will encourage young people to solve everyday problems using science and innovation. Along the way, their innovative ideas just may revolutionize the way we live.
Specifically, students will be challenged to identify an everyday problem related to the way we move, the way we keep ourselves healthy, or the way we make a difference. The problem should directly impact them, their family, their community, or the global population. The idea must be a new innovation or solution, and cannot simply be a behavioral change or a new use for an existing product.
The challenge is to create a one- to two- minute video that...
- explains the problem and how it impacts them, their family, their community or the global population;
- describes a new innovation or solution that could solve or impact the problem;
- explains the science, technology, engineering and/or mathematics behind their innovation; and
- illustrates how their innovation could both address the everyday problem they've identified and have a broader impact locally or globally.
The following are thought-starters within each category. Students are encouraged to consider one of these topics or come up with their own ideas within these categories.
- The Way We Move
Millions of people around the globe are moving everyday-walking, biking, driving, taking the bus or ferry, or traveling on horseback, just to name a few.
What kinds of technologies, innovations, or solutions might:
- Help reduce traffic accidents, jams or other transportation safety hazards?
- Create greener transportation solutions?
- Improve airline screening and/or security tools to make air transportation safer and/or more efficient?
- Overcome the challenges presented by weather elements (snow, ice, rain, storms, heat, wind, etc.) or natural disasters that might impact transportation?
- Make transportation more accessible to people with disabilities, limitations or challenges?
- The Way We Keep Ourselves Healthy
From the ball field, to the living room, to the classroom, ensuring the health and safety of others is of paramount importance.
What kinds of technologies, innovations, solution might:
- Improve protective gear for sports and activities to reduce injuries for athletes?
- Detect and/or prevent food poisoning?
- Prevent the spread of germs or illness when you're sick?
- Create a new way to reduce or fill cavities?
- Improve the way drugs or vaccines are administered to treat disease or illness?
- The Way We Make a Difference
Science touches every part of our lives, especially in times of need.
What kinds of technologies, innovations, solutions might:
- Protect people in the event of an emergency? (for example, communications, shelter, first aid, clean air/water)
- Serve unique populations with special needs? (physical challenges, under-resourced families or communities, etc)
- Improve the quality of life for people living in another part of the world with environmental consciousness?
Entries will be scored using the following judging criteria:
- Creativity (ingenuity and innovative thinking) (30%);
- Scientific knowledge (30%);
- Persuasiveness and effective communication (20%); and
- Overall presentation (20%).