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Congressional App Challenge



The Congressional App Challenge (CAC) is an annual competition hosted by members of Congress to encourage students in their district to learn how to code.  The winners get to go to Washington, DC for a reception and a two-day event called House of Code, their work is displayed in the Capitol Building, and they get other prizes.

The district-wide competition, now in its fourth year, takes place from June 4, 2018 through October 15, 2018.

The CAC is executed by the Congressional staff of each participating district, and coordinated by the Congressional Internet Caucus and the non-governmental sponsor of the project, the Internet Education Foundation (IEF).


All students in middle school or high school who have written an app for any platform between October of 2017 and October of 2018 are eligible to participate.  Students may submit apps individually, or in teams of up to four students, but no student may submit more than one app.

How to participate:

  1. Register by September 10, 2018 at
  2. Think of an app you would like to create.
  3. Design your app.
  4. Create your app.
  5. Submit anytime between June 4, 2018 through October 15, 2018.

A complete submission will include the following components:

  1. Sign-up Form (found on www.CongressionalAppChallenge.US). If students are competing as part of a team, the sign-up form must include the relevant information from each student.
  2. App Information
    • Title of your app.
    • The coding language used.
    • Short Description: What is your app trying to accomplish and why?
    • Tell us about a technical/coding difficulty you faced in programming your app and explain your coding solution.
    • Suggest improvements you would make to version 2.0 of your app.
  3. Demonstration Video
    • Students must create a 1-3 minute video, showcasing what your app does and how it works.  Videos that are longer than three minutes will be penalized per the judges’ discretion.
    • The video must be uploaded onto a public site such as YouTube or Vimeo so that judges may view it publicly.
      • Tell us your name(s) and the name of your app.
      • Clearly explain the purpose of your app in one sentence.
      • Explain the target audience and who your app is intended for.
      • Show us how your app is used.
  4. Exit Questionnaire
    • A MANDATORY exit questionnaire will be mailed to all students after the submission period closes.

Submission Requirements

  1. Submission Period opens on June 4, 2018 at 12:00pm Eastern Time (ET) and closes at 12:00pm Eastern Time (ET) on October 15, 2018.
  2. A student may compete in only one Congressional district.
  3. One application per student.
  4. Students may compete in either:
    • The district they live in; or
    • The district in which they attend school.
  5. Students may only compete in a maximum team of up to four members:
    • Teams with more than four members will be disqualified.
    • If competing in a team, at least two of the teammates must be eligible to compete within the district in which they are submitting the app.
  6. There is no age minimum, but the CAC is intended for middle and high school students only. Students may not participate after having graduated high school.
  7. The Challenge is subject to all applicable United States federal laws and regulations. Participation constitutes entrant's full and unconditional agreement to the Official Rules.


Note: Submitted apps must be created within one year of the submission deadline; any time after November 1, 2017. All apps must demonstrate knowledge of coding, but the app does not have to be published publicly for everyone to download and/or purchase.


Calling all app developers! I am looking for judges for my 2018 Congressional App Challenge (CAC). For information on what it takes to be a judge, please visit the CAC Judges Website. All applicants should submit their resumes to no later than Wednesday October 4, 2018.


  • Reviewing 3-minute demonstration videos of submitted applications
  • Reviewing short answer questionnaires
  • Judging based on a provided rubric
  • Meet the Timeline listed below


  • Previous experience working with app development or coding


  • June 4 – October 15: App submission period
  • October 15: Deadline for students to submit their app
  • October 20 – 28: Judging Period
  • October 29: Deadline for judges to submit selected winner to Office for approval
  • October 31: Deadline for offices to report winners to IEF
  • December 5: Deadline for offices to announce their winner
  • December 6: IEF will make National Winners Announcement


CAC Website

Student Resources