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Aviation and Space Education (AVSED) Airport Design Challenge Instructions

Competition Details


  1. Students may work individually or in teams of 2-5 students within the grade range specified.
  2. Students will research airports from their individual state and choose one to model their design after. While teams may choose any airport they prefer, choosing smaller, local airports may enhance the opportunity to interact with the airport management and gain a better understanding of the airport overall.
  3. Students will work together to develop a new map which closely resembles the terrain and environment near their home. Once completed, they will determine a suitable location to develop their airport.
  4. Students will develop specific parts of their airport based on assignments and guidance from FAA aerospace and engineering experts. Instructional videos, web links, and references will be available to assist them in understanding and duplicating each element of the airport properly (weekly focus tasks are illustrated in Table below).
  5. Students will collaborate on weekly knowledge check quizzes associated with specific assignments.
  6. Final design submissions must include either a video tour of the airport, narrated by the students and/or a slide presentation including still graphics of airport parts with written descriptions of each.
  7. Only the final submission will be judged; however, students must complete all knowledge check assignments.

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Award Categories

Certificates will be provided for grades K-6 and 7-12 in the following categories:

  • Primary Airport
  • Non-primary Airport

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Assessment Criteria

A panel of three independent reviewers will assess each entry, considering technical accuracy, creativity, innovation, and demonstrated knowledge (from weekly progress worksheets and final narrative). Each of the four factors will be worth up to 20 points per reviewer. The table below provides a comprehensive scoring rubric. The below categories will have two age groups – K-6th grade & 7th-12th grade.

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