Premier Farnell Technology Challenge 2017
Key Stage 5 students are given the opportunity to learn about the latest coding technology and design their own concept to help others with the help of Premier Farnell.
FOCUS: Help students to understand more about emerging technology and design as well as develop entrepreneurial and creative skills.
300 Post-16 students from across Leeds, Bradford, Wakefield and Calderdale took part in the Premier Farnell Technology Challenge 2017 where they were asked to design and create their own piece of technology to help someone with a physical or sensory impairment.
Students from 14 schools and college attended workshops at Leeds Beckett University where they were set their brief and took part in coding and UX design workshops, as well as met volunteers from their chosen user groups. These included people with dementia, visual impairments, arthritis and complex needs.
Students then had four weeks to order their kit from Premier Farnell and create their prototypes. Each school/college had their own competition, presenting and demonstrating their idea to judges from Jet2.com, Tunstall, Arris, LightStart, Egton Digital, Disability Services Team at Leeds City Council, InHealthcare, O2, Ayup, RNIB, Team17 and RabbIT to name a few. The competitions form part of the FutureJobs programme, a service from aspire-igen, Leeds City Region LEP, the Education & Skills Funding Agency and the European Social Fund.
A winner was chosen at each competition and they attended a Regional Final on 5 December at Aspire Leeds. Judges from Premier Farnell saw all the winning prototypes and chose to award a prize based on how well students met the brief from their users.
The judges prize was awarded to Prince Henry's Grammar School with their pill dispenser for people with visual impairments. Students had taken into account that there are so many different shapes and sizes of pills and so had developed a prototype to ensure the dispenser would release just the right number of each pill when programmed by a user or carer.
The people's choice award, voted on anonymously by everyone who attended the Regional Final, went to Shipley College. Their Dataface idea uses facial recognition to inform a person with dementia if a visitor is known or safe.