CAT Principles

C-A-T stands for Conceptual, Aesthetic, and Technical


  • What kind of project are you making? What do you need to know about the particular medium/genre?
  • What is your project about? — What is the main idea, argument, or information you are trying to convey?
  • Who is your audience/user? — Is it your instructor? Your classmates? A community group? A high school class?
  • What are your goals? – To convince? To persuade? To inform? To call to action?


  • What is the look or style of your work?
  • Do the colors, font, contrast, and structure support your ideas?
  • Are your choices consistent and coherent?
  • Do your design choices connect with your intended audience(s)?


  • Did you use software and other tools competently?
  • If you used images — are they clear and properly scaled? (not pixelated, etc.)
  • If you used text — is it written at the appropriate level for the intended audience? Is it legible (both size and font)? Does it contrast with any backgrounds?
  • If you used sound — Is the audio clear and crisp? Are the sound levels balanced? Are the transitions unnoticeable?
  • If you used video — Is the orientation appropriate for the venue/viewing device? Does the video use proper white balance? Is the picture clear?