Design Expo Team Information

Resources for Registered Teams

Design Expo Informational Session -

The Design Expo committee hosted a virtual information session prior to the Design Expo. This session covered important information and provided a time for Q&A. For reference, the info session was recorded and can be found below.

Spring 2024 Information Session Slides 

Design Expo Workshops with the Van Pelt and Opie Library

Prepare for Design Expo and other term-end presentations the right way – with peer support, pizza, and help from dedicated library and university staff! You’re invited to four instructional work sessions to help you create compelling videos, visuals, and pitches for the projects you have dedicated so much time to. Pizza will be provided at each so you can grab a quick meal while you fine-tune your work!

Design Expo Day-of Information

Social Hour and Awards Ceremony

Starting at 2:30 p.m., all student teams, judges, sponsors and friends, and the Michigan Tech campus community are invited to a social hour at the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts with light refreshments, entertainment, and door prizes. Then, at 3:30 p.m., we will begin the Design Expo Awards Ceremony, where student teams will be recognized, and more than $3,000 in cash will be awarded.

We look forward to seeing your team participate at the 2024 Design Expo! Please read the following instructions carefully to understand registration.

Design Scoring 

Enterprise and Senior Design teams will be scored by judges over the course of two (2) days, Monday, April 15 through Tuesday, April 16, 2024. Prior to the start of Design Expo, judges will have the opportunity to review team video presentations and assign a score with the use of RocketJudge. During the in-person event, judges will submit additional scores based on project presentations (for Enterprise teams only) and/or project tabling.

Video Submission Guidelines

Each team will submit one video for Design Expo. Considering your team's overall size and current remote/distributed status, try to involve as many members as possible in the creation of your content while still being mindful of the video’s flow and duration (e.g. it’s okay to limit narrators to a subset of members).

Video Audience

Assume the audience is a general member of the public—they need to understand the basics of the problem(s) you’re addressing, why it’s important to address, the solutions you’re attempting, and any next steps you’d like to continue to address these problems.

Video Captioning

Video captions or subtitles are necessary to make video accessible. There are many ways to incorporate video captions. If you upload your video to YouTube, you can use their built-in subtitle and closed captions editor. You can also use a third-party captioning service like 3PlayMedia or Rev. Zoom also has a built-in audio transcript feature that can be enabled before recording. Check your video captioning options before starting your video recording.

Video Criteria

  1. Teams are responsible for completing their own video
  2. Video should adhere to length guidelines
    1. Senior Design: 2 1/2 - 4 minutes
    2. Enterprise: 6 - 8 minutes, with a 10 minute maximum
  3. Your video must have closed captioning.
  4. Videos should include at a minimum the following information:
    1. Project title, list of team members, department, and sponsor(s)
    2. The problem(s) you tackled
    3. A preview of your team's solution(s)
    4. A concise conclusion from your work
    5. And your team's recommendations moving forward
    6.  Acknowledgments
      1. Team name and team members (those actively speaking in the video and their roles)
      2. Brief team overview and summary of major projects/activities 
  5. For larger teams, use below sections to highlight projects of your choice within the allotted time
    1. Project objectives and significance
    2. Solutions and results
    3. Conclusions and next steps/future work
    4. Acknowledgments

When creating your video, incorporate visual elements to support your work, such as graphs, tables, figures, images, simulations, videos, etc. 

Booths & Visual Aids

The visual aid is up to your team's interpretation. You are encouraged to display aspects of your project, and for some, that may mean bringing in the actual 'thing' you created. Essentially, you are encouraged to focus on visual data, images, and recordings of an experiment or re-creation of a method. Your focus should be more on a conversation with attendees rather than attendees reading a poster and then asking questions. You are, of course, welcome to make a poster if you believe it will be a better fit for your booth; if your team would prefer to produce a poster, aim for a 36" x 48" or 41.5" x 60" sized poster. If your instructor/department already requires you to create a poster for your project, you may use the same poster for Design Expo.

Both poster or no poster options are perfectly fine for Design Expo. Please make your table display whatever you're comfortable with as a means to speak with folks who stop by to learn more. Please plan to have at least two students at your booth throughout Design Expo 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Use of Music

How you choose to use sound is up to you.  It can be music throughout, changing to narration in some places, perhaps with quieter background music behind the narration if it seems appropriate. If you use any music, be sure it is open source and/or royalty free. Do not use copyrighted music. This website, 14 Best Royalty Free Music Sites For YouTube Videos explains the legalities and offers some links to downloadable music that is open source and free of cost. Another excellent source is Free SFX.

Submit Your Video

Video submissions are due Sunday, April 14, 2024 by 12:00 p.m. Remember, your video must have closed captioning embedded in your video. If closed captioning is unavailable, please provide a transcription of your video.

We prefer MP4 format, but AVI, WMV, MOV, MPEG (1, 2, and 4), 3gp, M2TS, OGG, OGV will work too. A YouTube link will not be accepted. 

Tips for Creating Your Video

There are tons of video creation and editing software options out there. Some tried and true options would be to use Zoom to record your team discussing a PowerPoint, poster, and technical drawing. If you have already started working on a poster design for Design Expo, consider doing a voice over in PowerPoint or Prezi. The choice is up to you and your team. Whether you choose to create a simple video or something more complex, remember that we value thoughtful content and clear communication over design and production quality. If you're looking for more tips on how to create a video, check out Visme and Adorama. Remember:

  • Do use voice and visuals that concisely and accurately describe the project, the problem, the why, the solution, and the next steps.
  • Don’t forgo the important information in a quest to create a cinematographic masterpiece.

Many of your Enterprise and Senior Design projects are sponsored by or involve input from external/industry partners. These projects often include confidentiality and/or formal project agreements (sometimes referred to as ‘contracts’). It is recommended that any team working on such projects review these agreements with their faculty advisor and sponsor before submitting a video for Design Expo. Affected Enterprise and Senior Design teams need to consider the following when preparing submissions for Design Expo.

Confidential or proprietary information

Teams often receive such information from their sponsors. This type of information would be labeled as such and protected under a project or non-disclosure agreement acknowledged by your team members. Such information must NOT be included in any of your Design Expo materials. If you are in doubt as to whether your materials contain confidential or proprietary information provided by your sponsor, please have your faculty advisor and sponsor review your materials before presenting in a public setting.

Intellectual property

Intellectual property refers specifically to patentable inventions and copyrightable software that arise directly from your project(s). If you are in doubt as to whether you have information that could be considered intellectual property, it is a best practice to share your draft Design Expo materials with your faculty advisor and project sponsor for their review before presenting in a public setting.

Sponsor name use

Projects conducted under formal project agreements include name use restrictions. These restrictions allow teams to reference the project title and the sponsor’s name in Design Expo materials; however, written approval of the sponsoring company is required for any formal publicity, advertising, and new release activities. While participation in Design Expo itself is not considered one of these activities, many sponsors view the Design Expo as a publicity activity. To maintain good-will with your sponsors, it is recommended that you provide drafts of your Design Expo materials to your sponsor for review and approval.


Projects conducted under a formal project agreement generally include a publication clause that allows Michigan Tech student teams to present the project title and scope of work for academic purposes including the Design Expo. However, some sponsors have negotiated a review period that teams must honor. Please review the specific terms of your project agreement to make sure your team complies with all contractual obligations to your sponsor.