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Information Technology Services Contest

Last Revised: 05 February 2015

Highlighted information is new for 2012

Highlighted information is new for 2011


See General Contest Information for information common to ALL OF BULLINGTON'S SKILL CONTESTS. Please print a copy for your records.

Written testing for most contests will be held ON-LINE through your schools' Testing Liaison.
Testing will be open beginning Monday, March 12.
The deadline for taking the on-line tests is Wednesday, March 17.
No provisions are being made for make-up testing on-site.
See the State SkillsUSA Director's Memo for the policy on substitutions and late registrations.

New for 2011: only the top THREE places will be called to the stage. Students and advisors will be able to check their scores and placement on-line shortly following the awards ceremony.

Print the General Instructions for each of your competitors and have them become acquainted with the competition BEFORE arriving at the conference.

Each contestant will be required to bring his or her printed resume. It will be presented to the judges upon entry to the contest area. A deduction will be applied to your overall score if you do not have a resume.

PLEASE NOTE: Contestants will need to move in to the Convention Center at 2:00 Sunday afternoon to set up equipment and allow maximum time for the contest on Monday. No guarantee of equipment safety can be made, but a security guard will be on hand all night with orders to allow no one in Monday until State Staff arrive.


Schedule for Sunday afternoon:


2:00-2:30--All contestants set up equipment


Instructors: please stay with your contestants until equipment is completely set up. Have had problems in past years with some equipment, unknown passwords, etc. and REALLY needed instructor intervention. If this will be a problem, let me know in advance. Please do not leave the contest area until your computer stations have been checked out by the judging staff and okayed.

Please attach prominently to your equipment a mobile phone number to contact for equipment removal.

Please put your mobile phone number on the Judges' Scenario so the Chairman may call you to clarify the problem and secure any passwords or work through any other issues that might force the station to be unusable, resulting in a forfeit for your students and placing them at a distinct disadvantage.


3:30--All contestants leave contest area


Present this memo to security or State Staff as your pass to accompany your contestants to the Information Technology Services contest area only.


The Technical Committee has requested that contestants dress in attire appropriate for field service. There will be a provision on judges' scoring sheets to reduce a contestant's score for inappropriate attire.



The following materials may be brought to the contest site on or before the day of setup or may be brought with the competitor the day of the competition.

Cabling Materials

  • 1 – 3 to 4 ft length of Cat 5 cable

  • 4 – RJ 45 connectors

  • Crimp tool for RJ 45 connectors

  • Cable cutter

  • Cable stripper

  • Cable tester

  • Safety Glasses

  • 2 – #2 Lead Pencils

Each school is to supply a set of THREE computers, identical, if possible, with identical software or hardware faults that will be assigned by the technical committee. This will allow for a Secondary station, a Postsecondary station, and a spare to be used in the event of a fault unrelated to the intentional fault, or for use to switch out with stations that have been serviced by students while judges re-insert the intentional fault.

Each computer should be as far as possible IDENTICAL, with same hardware configuration, O/S, and application software, if applicable.

  • Each computer should include appropriate ESD protection equipment, if the bug is hardware related, or if it requires the contestant to determine if hardware or software related, since lack of ESD equipment available at the station would be a give away. These should be put in place at the time the stations are set up and will be treated as an integral part of each station. Contestants will be penalized for failure to use the provided ESD protection.

  • Each competing school needs to supply TWO copies each of TWO documents:

    • TWO COPIES of a printed SCENARIO to be given to each contestant as they enter the station, stating the nature of the problem (symptoms) NOT the solution. At the judges option, they will be briefed from this by the judge or handed the printed scenario to read for themselves.

    • TWO COPIES of a printed SOLUTION for judges' use only, to allow them to observe whether or not the contestant correctly identifies and correct (if applicable) the fault, and INSTRUCTIONS on how to REINSERT the fault quickly for the next contestant. Please be concise but explicit.

  • Please remove all password protection from machines to be used during the contest. Any stations which come up requiring a password will immediately be abandoned, thereby placing your students at a distinct disadvantage in overall competition. This was a serious hindrance last year, as instructors could not be found and contestants did not know passwords.

  • Where the fault is in software, hard drives equipped with removal trays (see below) are required to allow for quick turnaround by judges. A spare hard drive, identically configured, for each computer, also equipped with a removal tray is required for these stations.

  • Please attach prominently to your equipment a mobile phone number to contact for equipment removal


MS/PC-DOS, IBM PC-Compatible work station including:

  • Note: Back up hard drive before bringing to contest: drive may be formatted at the contest to clear off any operating systems and programs or data

  • Extension cord, three-wire, grounded, 25 foot, orange, with good connections

  • Surge Protected Multi-Outlet Strip

  • Cables (power, printer, etc.)


  • Windows emergency boot disk with CD-ROM driver so that the CD drive is available after booting from the floppy disk

  • Diagnostic software you would routinely take with you on a service call

  • Other drivers (necessary for your hardware/software)

  • Manuals for software


  • Basic Electronic Hand Tools (including slotted and Phillips screwdrivers, as well as nut drivers)

  • Other tools you would routinely take with you on a service call

  • Anti-static strap and work mat (each contestant needs a wrist strap, each computer you bring needs an anti-static mat)

  • Test equipment (digital multi-meter)

  • Diagnostic software including anti-virus software

  • One computer related reference book or notebook (National competition standard is The Complete PC Upgrade and Maintenance Guide published by Sybex, or equivalent.)

Software must be legally purchased and licensed by the school. No "Pirate" software will be allowed for the protection of the Technical Committee, judges, and state staff. Use of manufacturers' manuals will be permitted during the contest.

Please attach prominently to your equipment a mobile phone number to contact for equipment removal if judges finish up before 4:30 (which they frequently do)

At approximately 4:30 p.m. and when the judges have approved the tear-down, contestants and advisors will be allowed back into the contest site to dismantle, repackage, and remove all their personal equipment. Positive identification may be required. Contestants failing to return and remove their equipment as directed will be disqualified! Please bring your own cart to assist in the removal of your equipment.


As agreed at August Conference each instructor is requested to secure a minimum of $50.00 in prizes for each student that you bring to the State SkillsUSA Championships. Please contact your Awards Chairman for details and to let him/her know of industry awards you have secured.  I know many of you have already been hard at work securing the awards. These awards should be labeled with the name, address, and contact person for the donating industry so that the contestant they are awarded to can send an appropriate expression of his or her appreciation.


The contest will consist of online written test covering knowledge of PC computer hardware and software, online SkillsUSA knowledge test, and a practical test involving computer hardware and software installation, setup, troubleshooting, and operation. The written test will contribute 20% to the total score and 80% will be divided among the various practical tasks as assigned by the Technical Committee as well as a customer service task. The SkillsUSA test will be used as a tie-breaker only, which is consistent with National SkillsUSA competition.

The following points are included for instructor to reference as you prepare students to compete: (From the judges' tally sheets). As you can see, soft skills comprise 9 of the 20 points available for each station.



  • 4 points:  CORRECTIVE ACTION

  • 1 point:  APPEARANCE (dress, grooming, demeanor)

  • 1 point:  GREETING (warm, introduces self and company, explains why here)

  • 1 point:  ATTITUDE (positive, helpful, sympathetic, reassuring)

  • 1 point:  SPEECH (good diction, pronunciation, complete sentences, correct grammar)

  • 2 points:  COMMUNICATIONS (appropriately technical, fully explains problem, corrective action)

  • 2 points:  RESOLUTION (solves problem or offers to repair off-site, offers loaner)

  • 1 point:  CLOSURE (clearly explains next action, customer responsibility, company responsibility)

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