Download the Official Rules for the 2024 HEAD Competition.


  • Teams must consist of¬†2 – 4¬†undergraduate, grad certificate or master’s students¬†currently enrolled in a full-time or part-time program at the SAME accredited higher education institution. Sorry, students registered in doctoral programs are not eligible.
  • Each team may include a faculty advisor from their institution. Student teams should have a faculty advisor at the time of registration.
  • Teams must be able to attend Phase II of the competition to compete. Not all teammates are required to attend every element of the competition.
  • Faculty advisors are encouraged to attend but are not required.
  • Multiple teams may be represented by the same faculty advisor.
  • Only students are eligible to receive prizes. Faculty advisors are not to share in any awards.

Faculty Participation

  • As mentors, faculty are to guide and provide advice to their students.
  • Faculty may advise students on specific approaches or answer questions posed by the teams.
  • Faculty should not lead the analysis team.
  • Faculty may not participate in actual data analysis, nor perform any analytical or presentation development activity in support of the teams.
  • Faculty do not need to attend the event, although it is strongly encouraged for networking purposes.

Competition Format

The HEAD Competition features a two-phase competition, with each phase requiring student teams to analyze and generate business insight from a competition-specific dataset.

The 2024 HEAD Competition has returned to in-person competition.

Phase One – Poster Showcase:

  • Data and questions for the first phase of the competition are made available to registered teams ASAP.
  • Student teams work at their home institutions to analyze the supplied dataset and develop solutions to the phase-one problem.
  • Each team prepares and submits a poster summarizing their analysis and answers to the problem. Poster guidelines and examples of prior posters are available on the Posters page. Posters are to be submitted in either PDF or PowerPoint format.
  • Team members present the posters at the conference poster session and are assessed by a panel of judges. A general rubric is provided on the Judging page.

Phase Two – Datathon:

  • Teams are provided with an additional problem and dataset on the same or similar theme.
  • Student teams have approximately 18 hours to prepare and present their solutions to the judging panel on the second day of the conference. A general rubric for Phase Two is provided on the Judging page.
  • The Phase II problem release will be introduced online to all qualifying teams. Teams must submit an electronic copy of their analysis to the competition team (or a link to cloud-based presentations) to ensure that presentations are not modified after the submission deadline. Teams must do live presentations, but they may present their analysis using any format they desire such as PowerPoint or interactive data presentations including Tableau, Cognos Analytics, PowerBI, etc. The only requirement is they must be able to share their visualizations on-screen.


Prizes will be awarded to the winning teams during the award ceremony. Prizes are awarded to teams based on their overall competition performance.

First Place: $1500.00 CAD
Second Place: $1000.00 CAD
Third Place: $500.00 CAD

There may also be other poster awards and gifts presented at the conference.