Secondary Models and Innovations

The Processes Of Working Technologically


By constructing a model  of an innovative device or application, you are fulfilling many technological skills from the Technology (Mandatory) Years 7–8 Syllabus; Design and Technology Years 7–10 Syllabus; Design and Technology Stage 6 Syllabus; Engineering Studies Stage 6 Syllabus and even the NSW Science K-10 (incorporating Science and Technology K-6) Syllabus. The technology emphasis of each of these NSW Syllabuses is to develop an understanding of the design process to enable you to manage, interpret, shape and alter their environment to improve their quality of life at home, school, in work places and in the broader community. This is achieved through the processes of Working Technologically.


The Models and Innovations category of the STAWorking Technologically SecondaryNSW Young Scientist Awards provides the perfect framework for you to develop skills in applying the following processes of Working Technologically:

  • Identifying a need or a problem
  • Generating ideas and research
  • Planning an innovative device
  • Constructing model
  • Producing solution or prototype
  • Testing and evaluating
  • Communicating






Your formal design folio should embrace a comprehensive coverage of the displayed processes of Working Technologically. Within each process, a number of suggested sections are recommended, however, we understand there will be some flexibility in your final order:


Identifying a Need or Problem

  • Beneficial: identify a need or problem that is beneficial to someone you know or a particular group in society 
  • consider addressing an issue of technological significance
  • Improvement: develop a solution that is an improvement over current alternatives


Generating Ideas and Research

  • Gathering Ideas: use idea-generation techniques such as brainstorming when developing creative design ideas
  • sketch different ideas and use market research techniques for a targeted group of end users to develop and test design ideas
  • consider the advantages and disadvantages for each design idea – evaluate the long-term and short-term consequences of particular design ideas
  • Background Research: include relevant background research when generating creative design ideas
  • evaluate the originality of your design by exploring similar related innovations


Planning an Innovative Device

  • Materials: make considered choices in the selection of materials
  • research appropriate technology to make design project successful
  • Production: plan production methods for the model of the innovative device
  • prepare and implement time and action plan for the design process
  • estimate financial costs and benefits including social, financial and environmental


Constructing Model

  • Risk Management: apply risk management practices
  • adopt safe procedures in the model’s construction
  • Skills: demonstrate technological skills in the construction process
  • make good use of finishing techniques to enhance the appearance of the model


Produce Solution or Prototype

  • Solution to problem: produce a solution which is an original and useful solution to the initial need or problem
  • produce a model that consistently performs its intended purpose
  • produce a solution that is an improvement over current alternatives
  • Future Developments: discuss modifications or alternatives to the final prototype
  • suggest worthwhile directions for future developments


Testing and Evaluating

  • Testing: organise a series of trial runs to test the reliability of the model
  • carry out an exhaustive testing regime to show that the model works as intended
  • Evaluating: carry out a full evaluation, discussing strengths and weaknesses of the innovative device
  • obtain direct feedback from the specific group or person that the device was designed to assist
  • document and evaluate decisions made throughout the design process using specified criteria for success
  • self-assess and peer-assess product solutions


Communicating your Final Design

  • Folio: a well-sequenced and developed design folio that is evidence of considerable time-taken
  • providing clear evidence of planning and preparation
  • Model: communicating how your model operates to the intended audience
  • incorporating different media in the presentation of your working model
  • Display: producing an informative poster that describes how your model works
  • using clear and concise language to communicate the operational details of the working mode
  • Marketing: consideration of marketing options for your model
  • effectively conveying your future ideas for your model



For the Young Scientist Awards, your model of an innovative device or application must be displayed at the University of Sydney, along with a design folio or logbook and a one page A3 or A1 poster explaining how your model works, specifically for the judges. If you are regional or for some reason, you are unable to set up your model at Sydney University, then you must submit a short video showing how your model works and a design folio or logbook, sent electronically using the online registration system.