Student Cluster Competition        
Student Cluster Competition
Student Cluster Competition

2019 Submission Guidelines

Submission Site:
Web Submissions Open:   February 7, 2019
Submissions Deadline:   April 26, 2019 (23:59pm AoE)
Acceptance Notification:   May 17, 2019

Team Proposal Guidelines

Submissions for the Student Cluster Competition will be ranked according to the rubric below. Reviews will be conducted by the SCC review committee and results with comments will be provided for all submissions that are received before the deadline. It is strongly suggested that the "Strength of Team" and "Strength of Hardware and Software" approach sections are written by the students on the team.

The SCC organizers highly encourage new and cross-institutional teams to broaden the reach of HPC. Institutions who are competing for the first time will receive 10 extra points. Teams consisting of multiple institutions are considered new if at least one institution in the team has never previously competed in the Student Cluster Competition at Supercomputing.

Proposals will be reviewed and ranked on a 100 point scale. The teams with the top scores will be invited to compete at SC19. All extra points will be added to the total score after the team has been scored according to the rubric below.

Strength of Team

10 Points

Explain why this team would do well in the Student Cluster Competition. Comment on the team's technical expertise, their scientific background, and their interest in HPC.

  • What HPC and/or computational science experience do team members have?
  • How is the team interdisciplinary? What non-computing or domain science disciplines are represented?
  • How do members create a team with a broad background of experience relevant to the competition?
  • Have any team members participated before?
  • How will prior competition experience impact the team?
  • How will HPC help team members in their academic careers? List specific reasons for wanting to participate in the competition.
  • Introduce the advisor and advisor's background
Strength of Hardware and Software Approach

20 Points

Explain the hardware and software architecture and discuss its feasibility.

  • Describe the hardware and software architecture in detail.
  • Explain why the software and hardware architecture will be successful.
  • Explain the strategy for running applications and/or optimization during the competition.
  • How is the architecture suited for the competition applications?
  • How will you manage your system’s administration and application workflow?
Strength of Vendor/Institution Relationship

15 Points

Discuss how the hardware will be provided by the vendor or supporting institution.  Describe in detail what support will be given by the vendor before and during the competition.  A vendor contact is required.

  • Will the vendor and/or institution provide hardware and fund equipment shipping costs as well as funds for other travel and travel-related expenses that are not covered by the competition?
  • What other support will the team receive from vendors and/or the institution?
  • If reviewers have questions about the architecture, who can answer those questions from the vendor and team?
  • If the team is planning to use a new architecture that is not generally available, what is the backup plan if the new architecture is not released or available by the start of the competition?
  • OPTIONAL: Provide a statement (e.g., a letter, email) from the vendor regarding agreement between the team or institutions and the vendor to support the competition. Please see the rules for the current competition for guidelines on expectations for vendors and SCC teams.
Strength of Diversity

15 Points

Describe efforts to broaden participation in underrepresented communities for team selection. Because the definition of "underrepresented" varies from country to country, authors should include a discussion of the ways in which their team includes under represented communities in their geographic region. In the United States, for example, some salient issues regarding diversity within advanced computing include the underrepresentation of women as well as racial and ethnic minorities.

  • Does the team include meaningful contributions by groups that are traditionally under represented in the country of the sponsoring institution?
  • What efforts made during the team selection process to approach under represented communities?
Team Preparation

15 Points

Discuss how your team will prepare to use HPC resources and/or learn computational science.

  • What courses are available and attended?
  • What HPC resources will be used to investigate the applications before vendor hardware arrives?
  • What is the team’s method for preparing for the competition?
  • How will your team utilize cloud resources during preparation and the competition?

25 Points

This category is for judges to make a general assessment about the overall quality of the proposal as a whole. This category should not be treated as a separate section in the proposal.

  • Was the submission consistent, complete, and well written?
  • Does the submission reflect a holistic approach that is likely to result in a positive learning experience for the team?
  • Does the team have the elements needed to successfully compete in the competition?