VEX U Improvements?

The discussion popped up today (Yesterday?) on the discord thread about a few items that could be done to improve VEX U.
A couple of things I always thought would help improve VEX U are:

  • Bigger fields I think VEX U deserves to have a bigger field and have the same game as VRC adapted to it or if the GDC somehow gained capacity to create a new VEX U game it would be cool to have something unique.
    @jmmckinney did a gorgeous render of just a blank field with this for me a while ago. image

  • I always liked the idea of having teams may it be two large robots and two small robots or some sort of third robot combination I think it would make a much more interesting scenario.

  • Per the discussion today VEX Worlds falls on finals for a lot of colleges, which is not great or convenient.

What other items would you like to see for VEXU?


But if they require bigger fields, some schools have both vex u teams and ms or hs teams, they will require to buy another feild?

Unless I am mistaken a lot VEX U teams are not associated with HS/MS programs in a sense that they share fields and resources, I could be completely wrong, but from the midwest’s teams that I can think of off hand non are like this.

Also it would only be part of a field, 28 titles, 4 walls and adapters for the walls.

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I think Team VIRUS 3547/MCCC is the only program that has IQ, VRC, and VEX-U all at the same time. We own 5 VRC fields, and host one VEX-U event, so the bigger field is not really a resource issue, just means we can’t run VEX-U and VRC events simoltaneous.

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I would love to see more freedom with motors and hardware. V5 motors are great, but there are worlds where brushless motors and servos can be even better. With V5 and custom electronics, it would be cool to push the boundaries.

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Less reliance on V5. Allow freedom of control system usage. I also want to use VEXPro electronics.

Imo, VEX U

My friend joked about this, but winners get internships at IFI lol.

I’ve argued since 2013 that the field sizes should be different than VRC HS and MS.

VEX U for the longest felt like extended HS VRC.

How do most teams qualify to WORLDS? In Florida the VEXU teams do skills at VRC events. This would be a hard sell to set up an additional field to do a couple of skills runs.


There are actually quite a few VEXU teams who are supported by their previous high schools in terms of parts, funds and fields. As new fields would be an interesting change to VEXU, I don’t believe the majority of teams can afford to do this or accommodate for the larger space requirement.
In terms of Worlds, the date does happen to fall on most colleges dead week or finals weeks which does restrict the attendance of a lot of team members. Pushing the date back say 2 weeks could increase VEXU attendance significantly.
Qualifying Criteria has seemed a little broken over the past few years as like 30% of Worlds in 2019 came from the skills/waiting list


And I’m fairly certain the World Champs didn’t actually compete in an official tournament all season

+1…everyone on the MCCC team had to skip their last lecture before finals, then come back for finals! Delay the U-tournament until May, and it would be great!


Good point. While it’s not a big deal to set the big fields for a U-tournament, we have done U-skills a couple times during lunch break at a VRC tournament.

Yeah it honestly feels like the timing of Worlds run incongruous with the college finals schedule.

I’m certain it’d be more expensive to host a separate event with the Worlds like feel for VEX U teams if you pushed it back 2 weeks. Venue availability and everything considered.

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This thread has been fun to read, here are my thoughts on various points:

Bigger fields - I think this would impose too much additional work on teams and EPs to be feasible. As others have mentioned, lots of VEXU teams do skills runs at HS/MS events, which would not be possible if the field sizes/layouts were different. Bigger fields would also make it more difficult for EPs (most of whom already run HS/MS events) to host VEXU events. The WV VEXU qualifier (consistently one of the world’s largest VEXU events) is super easy to organize because it’s held the day before our VRC states, so basically all we have to do is set up everything a day earlier. That event would be significantly harder to put together if the field size/layout were different.

More electronics freedom - I think this would be really cool. I would love it if VEXU teams could use more-powerful VEXPro motors in applications where they’re useful, and even lighter IQ motors in places where you don’t need all the power of a V5 motor. For various reasons, however, I think this is unlikely to happen given the current robot and match control hardware.

Worlds conflicts with college finals - In addition to being inconvenient for many VEXU teams, this is also inconvenient for me as a volunteer. This year I got home from Worlds at 8:00 PM on Tuesday, then had an exam at 10:00 AM on Wednesday, which was definitely not ideal.

Pushing only VEXU Worlds back a couple of weeks does not solve my problem, and poses new cost and logistical problems as already discussed. I would instead be happier if they pushed the whole event back 2 weeks, to early/mid-May. At this point, most college students are done with finals, but most schools in the US are still in session.


The problem with pushing it back further though is it then cuts into AP/IB exam season for HS students. Not only that, State testing for many states also starts then.


What about June? Almost all ap testing I know of is over and most colleges are wrapping up a little bit earlier than high schools.


A world championship for only VEX-U certainly wouldn’t include all the glitz of VRC, but I don’t think college students need to have all that, either. A smaller venue would work fine.


Well guess it depends. Do VEX U students want that same Worlds feel and seeing everything there is to see at Worlds, or do they just want a real chance to compete?

So if they push VEX U back a little bit… where do you hold it to make it worth it?

Heck at that point if VEX U Worlds is held separately from the rest of it, I’d want more program changes to really open up the games and allow more freedom.


I think you could easily make it a massive event at a university, maybe rotate around university to university let them show off each ones great programs and venues.

What program changes would you want?