Al Ain Hundreds of school pupils from across the country will show their talent and creativity in the UAE University\'s fifth IT Marathon on Thursday. The contest is jointly organised with Microsoft Imagine Us, a leading technology competition for high school pupils in the UAE, for the first time. Some 400 pupils representing more than 70 schools are expected to take part. Special efforts have been made to involve pupils with special needs, a spokesperson for the university\'s Faculty of Information Technology said. \"The aim of this event is to expand young minds\' enthusiasm for information technology and to encourage IT innovation,\" the spokesman said. The university has worked with the whole UAE education sector to invite pupils to spend a day at the faculty and participate in three competitions. Since last year, the IT Marathon has been co-organised by the Abu Dhabi Education Council. The event will also include interaction with the school team coaches and presentations from industry participants on the latest innovations. In the first competition, participants will solve programming problems, create illustrative graphics and interactive web applications, and troubleshoot basic computing and network systems. The top three ranked teams will win valuable prizes. Pupils will put on display their school IT projects in the second contest. Projects will be judged, with the finalists asked to make a short presentation to decide the winner. In the third competition, Pupils from grades 1-9 have been divided into two categories to show their talent and creativity by developing interactive stories, games, animation, simulation and other interactive multimedia applications. Over 50 projects have been submitted in this category and the best 15 have been selected.