Things to do Prior to the Competition

The following information will go over how to prepare for a VEX IQ Tournament

The following things should be done a few days before the Tournament:

  • Organize and make sure your Engineering Notebook (Also Known as the Design Notebook) is organized.
    This is very important as you will be evaluated on this and can possibly win an award if you have a solid notebook.
    The nicer/neater you make this notebook, the better YOU will look in front of the judges.
  • Make sure you know the rules of the game, as well as all the “Technical aspects”, the rules can be found here.
    (NOTE: this link is for the current game of Crossover 2016-17)
  • Make sure that you, as a student are the one that petitions any and all rulings. Judges will not listen to any of the problems or concerns that your parents raise. Rulings as well as arguments and disputes will only be contested when a student makes a note, parents and coaches have ZERO say in a VEX IQ tournament. Parents are spectators and your moral support not participants.
  • Know what events you are participating in:
    • Engineering Design:
      • Present your Engineering Notebook to the judges, discuss your design as well as how you came up with it
    • STEM Presentation:
      • Present your topic that you researched to the Judges
      • 2016-17: Topic & Rubric
    • Driver Skills
      • Drive your robot on the field and do your best to score as many points as possible
    • Programming Skills
      • Program your robot to move, by itself and score as many points as possible as well as showing your awesome programming skills.
    • Team Work Challenge
      • Coordinate with other teams during multiple matches and work together to score as many points as possible.

Tips for Teams to Prepare for VEX IQ Challenge Events


At VEX IQ Challenge events, students showcase their knowledge and skills in designing, building, repairing, and programming a robot, documenting their learning in an engineering notebook, and delivering a STEM Research Project presentation, with minimal adult assistance. While adults may assist students in urgent situations, they should never work on a robot or the research project without the students on that team being present and actively participating.

Keep it simple and get the whole team involved in solving the VEX IQ Challenge.
 Provide plenty of time to practice with the robot and the STEM Research Project presentation.
 Enjoy the learning experience!

Preparing for the Event

 Review the details of the event on
 Download consent forms, for each student and adult to complete, from the “VEX IQ Challenge Teams” page:
 Review the rules in the official Game Manual on the “Current Challenge” page:
 Review and follow the requirements of the robot Inspection Checklist on the “Current Challenge” page:
 Review and follow the guidelines for the STEM Research Project presentation on the “Current Challenge” page:
 Install all robot firmware updates, available at
 Check Game ruling updates and share questions on the VEX IQ forum at
 Make sure your team members know their team number.
 Exchange event-day contact information with all team members.
 Plan to wear comfortable clothes and closed-toed shoes. Team shirts and costumes are cool!
 Use the event site details to make team lunch plans.
 Advise the event contact of any special accommodations that are requested by your team.

Bring to the Event

Enthusiastic and energetic students and adults.
 Signed consent forms for all students and adults.
 Engineering Notebook. The notebook is submitted at the team check-in desk.
 Water and non-perishable snacks, if permitted by the food and drink policy for the event venue.
 A fully charged robot, with your robot license plate attached to two opposing sides. To purchase robot license plates, visit:
 Spare parts and the robot kit, labeled with your team number.
 Charged batteries and a battery charger. Assign a team member to monitor battery usage.
 Laptop computer, laptop charger, and a download cable for robot programming.
 Extension cords and power strips. Be careful to keep cords clear of walkways.
 A watch, highlighter, clipboard, and a timekeeper assigned to keep your team on schedule.
 Protective eyewear is not required, but prepare your team for safe participation in the event.
 Materials required for your team’s STEM Research Project presentation. Make a copy of any engineering notebook pages that your team may use in its presentation.
 Decorations for your pit area. Giveaway items are optional.
 Camera to capture the action and memories.

At the Event

 Provide adult supervision of students at all times. Adults are responsible for student behavior and are expected to set a good example during the event. Follow the event chaperone policies.
 Have an adult check in your team and turn in your forms and Engineering Notebook as soon as you arrive.
 Get your robot inspected as soon as possible after check-in.
 Get started by setting up your pit area. Keep your pit area neat and well organized.
 Give your team a sense of the event layout, including the location of the practice game fields, Information Desk, First Aid station, restrooms, and lunch area.
 Establish a meeting place at the event in case team members get separated.
 Keep track of your personal belongings.
 Highlight your team number on your match schedule, so students are on time for Teamwork Challenge matches.
 Make sure your team is scheduled for a STEM Research Project presentation time that does not conflict with your Teamwork Challenge matches. If a conflict develops, alert the Information Desk or Judge Advisor.
 Remind the event staff of any special accommodations requested by your team.
 Drink lots of water and eat snacks. Be sure to follow the venue food and drink policies.
 Share your positive team spirit, including cheers and dances.
 Take time to meet other teams. Share your learning experiences.
 Demonstrate courtesy and respect to all event staff and participants at all times.

Matches and Project Judging

 Things will happen beyond your team’s control. Don’t worry – that’s to be expected.
 Give all interested team members an opportunity to drive the robot. One out of every four qualifying matches will not count toward the team’s Teamwork Challenge ranking.
 Know your team’s Teamwork Challenge match schedule. Don’t be late to a match, as it will start without you.
 Make sure your robot is within the maximum allowed size throughout the match.
 The only team members permitted to be by the playing field are the two student drivers.
 Follow the directions of the field managers and referees at the game field.
 Turn on the robot before the match starts.
 Have fully charged robot batteries – test them in the pits before the match.
 If the robot or programming doesn’t work, check for firmware updates.
 Put the controller on the floor before touching the robot or reaching onto the field during the matches.
 Switch the controller between the two drivers halfway through the match.
 Upon arrival at the Skills Challenge field, advise the field staff of your team number and the Skills Challenge your team will try, Driving Skills or Programming Skills.
 Student drivers are the ones to share any scoring questions or concerns with the referee before the field is re-set. Referees will not review recorded replays of matches.
 Offer positive encouragement and support to all team members throughout the day. Make the event a great learning experience for everyone involved!

After the Event

 Celebrate your team’s accomplishments.
 Keep in touch with new friends from the event and share your learning experiences.
 Prepare for great new learning experiences in the VEX IQ Challenge!