The MacConnell Award celebrates comprehensive projects that address a detailed and specific planning process resulting in a facility that supports the educational goals of the district, the needs of a community and is student-centered for active and dynamic learning. It addresses all components of the criteria in an exceptional manner. The James D. MacConnell award is the most prestigious of all the Association's Awards – and is awarded to the most distinctive submission. There is one winning project and several finalists identified.
Project Awards recognize projects that positively impact the learning in a community and best satisfy the criteria. Projects that are submitted to the MacConnell Award, but are not named as Finalists will also be entered in this category. The jury can elect to award any number of these awards (if any) and can also move projects between categories of Project Awards and Special Commendations at their discretion.