Science Fair Handbook
By Mr. Evans & Mr. Sattar
Table of Contents
Rules and Display Basics
Vocabulary and Sci. Method
How to Write Bibliography Entries
Data Collection and Presentation Pointers
Template for Project Report
Abstract and Template
Display Board Reminders
Be Prepared for Judging – Oral Presentation
Expectations ISEF Judging Criteria
B.P.A. Class Rubric
Science Fair Note / Fall
During the next few months your child has expressed a desire to compete in our annual science
fair and if you agree with their decision, they are thus required to complete a science fair project
which uses the scientific method to solve answer a question. Science projects are primarily
independent study assignments involving experimentation on a topic of individual interest. The
educational benefits are numerous and include development of many skills such as writing, oral
presentation, creative thinking and problem solving.
Students have been given directions during class and will continue to receive instructions for
the various steps of his/her project. Most of the work will be completed at home, and students will
receive a calendar noting due dates for each part of the project. Hopefully, this close supervision
will help your child develop good time management skills and will ultimately result in a quality
Your child may need you to monitor his/her progress and provide encouragement. Your
support is one of the keys to a successful project, but please do not allow your involvement to extend
any further than that of monitor in order to assure equity and promote student learning! Also, be
aware that a prize winning project can be completed for under 200.00 AED.
We are including a pamphlet of information that you will find useful. Please take time to read
this information carefully. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact the Science Dept.
Leave a message with the front office (001-555-5555), and we will return your call as soon as
possible. You may e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
You can find more science fair information on one of the several websites we support. Go to
www.sattaroc.com and then go to the Science Fair tab. You can read the detailed International Science
and Engineering Fair (ISEF) rules, look for ideas, and find other helpful tips.
Mr. Evans & Mr. Sattar
Science Fair Project Due Dates…2013-2014
**If you want BPA to purchase your board, 60.00 AED for your board is due before Nov. 5**
Need Ideas? www.sciencebuddies.org then Science Fair Project Guide
Each assignment is a test grade. Remember to keep a daily log book.
KEEP A COPY OF EVERYTHING YOU DO!
KEEP A COPY AT HOME AND BRING A COPY TO SCHOOL
HANDWRITE THE COPY IF YOU DO NOT HAVE ACCESS TO A PRINTER
Mark Your Calendar!!!
October 31, 2013
November 5, 2013
November 10, 2013
November 17, 2013
December 9, 2013
January 5, 2014
January 12, 2014
January 19, 2014
January 23, 2014
January 26, 2014
January 30, 2014
February 1, 2014
1. Research Plan AND Parental Permission forms (1A and 1B) due Wednesday, October 31,
Procedure plans – step by step
Data analysis plan
Safety Precautions and Name adult supervisor
If conducting a survey, attach survey to Research Plan
2. If you would like the school to purchase a board for you, your money is due by November 5,
2013 The price is 60.00 AED.
3. Note card / Note check will be Sunday, November 10, 2013. Keep note cards in an
Envelope with information from each source bound with rubber bands. At least 5
sources are required.
List source information for your bibliography on one side
List facts found from the source on the other
4. Rough Draft of Report (Literary Review) and Bibliography due Sunday, November 17,
2013. The report is to be written by hand – NOT TYPED. The bibliography needs to be
typed if possible. Six references required. The report should be about 10 paragraphs or 4
pages. Do not exceed 15 handwritten pages.
Report about background information on your topic (handwritten)
Bibliography of references / Literary Review (Type with size 12 Times New Roman
font, using correct APA format)
5. Final Copy with corrections, additions, and deletions; and all additional forms due
December 09, 2013 (Type with size 12 Times New Roman font)
Human Consent forms if giving a survey or using a human in an approved way
Safety forms if committee deemed a need for extra safety precautions
Expert advisor forms if committee deemed necessary
Disposal of waste forms if committee deemed necessary
Any other form deemed necessary by committee
6. Abstract and Report of Question, Purpose, Hypothesis, Materials, Procedures,
Experiment data, Results, Charts or Graphs Conclusion, and are due Sunday, January 19,
REMEMBER TO KEEP A COPY AT HOME FOR THE SCIENCE FAIR – SAVE IT ON YOUR COMPUTER AND FLASH DRIVE!
**THIS IS MR. EVANS’ AND MR. SATTAR’S COPY for GRADING- We may write on it if corrections are needed – Bring corrected
copy to the Fair
ABSTRACT on separate page - 250 words or less – summary of your project
(Type with size 12 Times New Roman font)
Report (Type with size 12 Times New Roman font) – Do this after your experiment is
Actual material list
Actual procedures – step by step
Data (refined and written on table or chart) OR summarized – NOT RAW DATA
Results – summarized
Charts, graphs, pictures – Organized visual representation of results
Conclusion – State whether you proved or disproved your hypothesis AND tell why
7. Oral Presentation Due – Sunday, January 23, 2011 (write out what you will practice saying)
8. Total project with board, log and all the parts due Sunday, January 26, 2013 by 8:30 a.m.!
9. Judging – Tuesday and/or Wednesday. Be prepared to tell the judges about your project.
10. Judging – Vertical 1-5 grades/ 6-8 grades/ 9-12 grades Thursday AM.
11. Judging – Overall Competition 1-12 grades Thursday PM.
12. Parent Night Thursday, January 30, 2014. Win Ribbons will be on projects for parent night.
13. Pictures for the Newspaper on Wednesday or Thursday. Take projects home Sunday
14. Regional Science Fair for U.A.E. first through third place winners. Date to be announced.
Science Fair Project Research Plan
Name: ________________________________ Class Period_____ Date _________
PROJECT TITLE: ______________________________________________________
Topic: Circle the category you think your project would be in.
Earth and Planetary Science
Behavioral and Social Sciences
Engineering (Materials and Bioengineering)
Cellular and Molecular Biology
Medicine and Health Science
Engineering (Electrical and Mechanical)
Physics and Astronomy
Energy and Transportation
If conducting a survey, attach draft of survey to this research plan.
If all your information will not fit in space provided, staple it to the paper.
Purpose (What do you want to learn): The purpose of this project is to learn…
Question/Problem being addressed:
Hypothesis: If / Then statement that can be tested.
Materials: List all of the materials you plan to use.
Procedures – Step by Step: Like a good recipe – include amounts. How do you plan to
do your experiment? Write the steps you plan to follow. Remember others should be
able to duplicate the steps. (If using a survey, attach a copy of your survey to this
How will you provide a control for your test? What will you do to provide a control
trial that is not altered by the independent variable? This is done so that a “normal”
outcome can be established for your experiments to be compared to?
How many sets of trials will you test?
What variables are you keeping constant? List the variables you have to keep the
same to make sure you are only testing one variable.
What steps will you take to make sure only the independent variable is being tested?
Independent variable(s): What one factor are you changing in each trial? As the
scientist, “I” am changing this.
Dependent variable(s): What factor will be changing as a result of your independent
Data Analysis - Circle one:
Quantitative Data (counted or measured) or Qualitative Data (described with words)
Make the chart or table you will use to record your data in an organized way. Attach
it to this packet.
How will you display the results: circle all that apply
line graph pie graph bar graph other: ____________
*Remember to put the independent variable on the x axis and the dependent variable
on the y axis.
Safety Precautions: What safety measures will you take? How will you dispose of
materials when you finish? Which adult will oversee your work?
The Science Fair will be at the end of January
www.sciencebuddies.org then Science Fair Project Guide
Bring your projects to school that morning. Do not bring before Sunday – January 26th morning.
With your board, bring all your reports, log book, and forms, but keep a copy at home.
Some Science Fair Rules – Official Guidelines: http://www.societyforscience.org/isef/rulesandguidelines
1. No glass, water, dirt, waste, food, sharp items, controlled substances, dry ice, fire, tanks, unshielded machinery ,
lasers, heat, or chemicals. These may not be displayed under any circumstances. DISPLAY PICTURES INSTEAD.
2. No electricity. Batteries may be used. No car batteries!
3. You may experiment with invertebrates, but not vertebrates. Human subjects may only be used in surveys, and if
used, a Human Subject Form must be completed for each person involved.
name on the front of
No more than 108” tall when placed on a 36” tall card table
4. Do not write your first. All project plans must be approved by your teacher and the science fair committees.
5. You must have a backboard! You can make one from a cardboard box if you have to. Standard tri-fold boards
can be purchased at school for 60.00 AED before November 5th, or at local Teacher Supply Stores, Lulu’s, Carrefore.
following on attractive lettering and correct spelling. Be creative! The board may be a color other than white.
Please use the
back of your board:
Name is how your
needs to be set
Period for science
Academy – Sports
Project Display Basics
- 30" front to back (deep)
- 48" side to side (wide)
- 108" floor to top of your display
Measure from floor with project on a card table.
Table height may not exceed 36”
No more than 48” wide
Title of Project
No more than 30” deep.
(Graphs & Charts)
Your abstract, log book, and report, along with copies of all your forms, must be on your table in front of your board.
Parts of a Science Fair Project and Scientific Method Diagram
1. Title – Choose a catchy title. Be specific!
2. Purpose – What exactly are you trying to discover by completing this project?
3. Hypothesis – Tell how you will test your prediction, then based on what you know, try to guess
an answer for your question. Make a prediction of what will happen as a result of your experiment,
and write it as a statement that can be tested. If _________, then________.
4. Procedure – Explain step by step what you plan to do, or what you did, in order to prove or
disprove your hypothesis. Remember to follow safety rules when doing your experiment. Make a
list of the materials you use. Include all tools and items. Write the amount of each item used, and
remember to use metric measurements. Like a good recipe, others should be able to replicate it.
5. Results – Explain what happened when you performed your experiment. Record this regularly in
log book, and then write as an official report in the result section of your presentation. Use charts.
6. Conclusion – Explain what you learned as a result of your project. This can tell if your hypothesis
was supported or not supported.
7. Model – on table A 3-D representation of your project. Check list of rules about allowed items.
8. Abstract – on table A summary of your project. It should be no more than 250 words (one side of a
page). Be brief. Include your hypothesis, procedures and your conclusion.
9. Report – on table A written report of information pertaining to your project title. Use research
materials such as books, magazines, the internet, etc. Be sure to cite the source of your
information and do not copy information word for word. Citing your sources means telling people
where you got your information. At least 6 sources should be cited in the bibliography.
10. Science Log Book or Journal - on table A daily record of the work on your project kept in book.
11. Data – You need to include graphs and/or charts to show a visual picture of your data.
12. Pictures – optional You may include pictures of your experiment, but not of yourself. No sensitive
photographs! No faces in the pictures.
REMEMBER TO USE
For more information: www.putnamscienceonline.com – Science Fair Page
An If / Then Statement
About what you will do
and what you think will happen
Change your question to an “If/Then” statement. Use the knowledge you gained from your
literary review (background Research) to make an educated guess about what will happen.
Developing your Hypothesis.
1. Make your hypothesis an IF/THEN statement to show exactly what you are testing and what you expect
the result to be.
2. Make your hypothesis a TESTABLE statement. At the end of your experiment you want to be able to
say, “My hypothesis was supported” or “My hypothesis was not supported.”
3. NEVER change your hypothesis after experimenting. Remember, it is just an educated guess. The
reason for a hypothesis is to remind you of the goal of your investigation. It forces you to think and plan
before you begin. If the prediction stated in the hypothesis does not match the actual outcome, it is ok.
4. Your hypothesis should include the reasoning behind your prediction. Support your point of view with
Based on the information I learned from my background research, I have formed the following hypothesis.
If _______________________, then _____________________________________________________.
OR WRITE THIS:
My hypothesis states that if ______________________, then ____________________________. This
hypothesis is based on ____________(tell why you think this is going to happen)_________________.
Study everything known about your topic & cite resources!
explains how the two
variables are related
How things work
Vocabulary / Concepts
Vocabulary / Concepts
Vocabulary / Concepts
People / History
People / History
People / History
SEARCH OUT INFORMATION
Concerns or Benefits
1. Go to the library and record the topic information gathered and bibliographic information into your log
2. Talk to professionals in the field, take notes and record their address, occupation, etc. into your log
3. Write to companies for information or visit their websites.
4. Be on the lookout for areas of the topic that are not well understood. This may lead to NEW information
with your research. Define words that are needed to understand your project. Explain the main ideas
driving your experiment.
Organizing your Information:
5. Use a note taking technique. Put facts and bibliography information on the same
6. Organize everything you have learned about your topic with an outline.
7. Narrow your information by focusing on one particular idea at a time.
8. Write about your topic. Define and explain things. Stick to your topic.
Bibliography Worksheet – Record this information as you read about your topic!!! 6
References are required!!!!
Resources to consider:
Library – encyclopedia, books, journals and professional magazines
School – textbook, school library
Reliable Internet Resources – colleges and universities, government agencies, museums, botanical
gardens, magazine publishers – Discover, National Geographic
Community interviews – Experts in fields related to your topic, college and university professors,
questions to internet scientists at NASA and other reliable places
Businesses and Agencies - ask government agencies or businesses for brochures and information
Collect this information for each Printed Source:
title of the publication
title of the article if it's a magazine or encyclopedia
date of publication
place of publication of a book
name of the publishing company of a book
the volume number of a magazine or printed encyclopedia
the page number(s) the information you are using is from
Collect this information for each Website:
the Web address for the page (called a URL)
author and editor names (if available)
title of the website
title of the page (if available) or video
the company or organization who posted the webpage
volume number if an electronic newsletter or magazine publication
date you looked at the page to write information
Collect this information for each Interview:
first and last name
occupation and employer
professional degrees or certificates
number of years in the field of expertise
date of interview
Computer Internet Search Guide
1. Log on to computer and open the Internet. Go to www.putnamscienceonline.com and go to Computer Lab Link.
2. Watch this video: http://www.freetech4teachers.com/2009/01/teaching-internet-search-strategies.html
3. Get started by using a search engine below. Remember to write all information needed for bibliography.
List your Key Words: _______________________, ____________________________, ____________________________,
________________________, ________________________, _____________________________, __________________,
_______________________, ________________________, ___________________________, ______________________
to leave out
around words that should
For each website you record facts from, record the following information on your notes.
Date found by you:
Ask the Right Questions
How do (independent variable) and (dependent variable) relate to each other?
What is the relationship between (independent variable) and (dependent variable)?
Who discovered __________? Who invented _____________? When was ___________ invented or discovered?
What is __________ used for?
How does __________ help people? How can ___________ harm people?
Use a Search Engine from the list below.
Fact Monster / choose encyclopedia: http://www.factmonster.com/
Encyclopedia Search: http://www.encyclopedia.com/
Columbia University Press / Encyclopedia: http://education.yahoo.com/reference/encyclopedia/
Other websites for searching science topics
Government Agencies for Kids: http://www.kids.gov/
Science Kids: http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/
Search Government Agencies for Science: http://www.science.gov/
Archived “Ask a Scientist” questions – Michigan State University: http://www.pa.msu.edu/sci_theatre/ask_st/date_index.html
Science Bob - General Science Categories: http://www.sciencebob.com/research/index.php
Government Science Information byTopic: http://www.science.gov/browse/w_133A.htm
Discovery Education - Scroll Down to Web Resources for Science:
Reference Desk: http://www.refdesk.com/science.html
Museum of Science and Industry Chicago: http://www.msichicago.org/
People in Science – Biography Site: http://scienceworld.wolfram.com/biography/
Rader's Network of Science and Math Sites: 4Kids…: http://www.kapili.com/index.html http://www.kapili.com/topiclist.html
Sites Listed by Science Topics: http://www.beaucoup.com/1scieng.html
How to Write BIBLIOGRAPHY ENTRIES…
6 MAJOR REFERENCES ARE REQUIRED!!!!!!
You must write a Literary Review or a Report of Background Research. This is
research on your topic which you will summarize into a written report. All your
resources must be listed in your Bibliography or Reference List.
References/Bibliography: Your bibliography or reference list should include any
documentation that is not your own (i.e. books, journal articles, websites, brochures,
USE RELIABLE RESOURCES! DO NOT USE WIKIPEDIA!
USE: Encyclopedias, Universities, Government Agencies, Experts, Books, Magazines
Use APA style. Bibliography is alphabetical and not numbered. The first line is
at the margin and the second line of same reference is indented.
*List the sources in alphabetical order using the author's last name. If a source has more than one author,
alphabetize using the first one. If an author is unknown, alphabetize that source using the title instead.
Article from a magazine
Shultz, F.B. (1973). Spiral Structures, Dust Clouds, and Star Formations. American Scientist, 61, 524-536.
Author. (year). Article title. Magazine title, volume number, page numbers.
Book with an author
Peebles, J.B. (1980). The Large-Scale Structure of the Universe. New York: Princeton University Press.
Author. (year). Book title. Location: Publisher.
Chapter or portion of a book
Thompson, R.L. (1986). The History of Earth. (pp. 238-250). New Orleans: Putnam Publishing Company.
Author. (year). Book title. (pages read). Location: Publisher.
Book with an editor
Andrew, B.H. (Eds.). (1980). Interstellar Molecules. San Francisco: D. Reidel Publishing Company.
Author. (editor). (year). Book title. Location: Publishing co.
Book with no author or editor
Merriam-Webster’s collegiate dictionary (11th ed.). (2005). Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster.
Title of book (edition number). (year). Location: Publisher.
Bergmann, P.G. (1993). Spiders. In The new encyclopedia Britannica (Vol. 26, pp. 501-508). Chicago: Encyclopedia
Author. (year). Title. Name of encyclopedia (volume number, pages used). Location: Publishing Company.
Electronic book with no author
Heuristic. (n.d.). In Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary (11 th ed.). Retrieved from http:www.m-w. com/
Harrison, J. (Producer), & Schmiechen, R. (Director). (2000). You Can Count on Me [ Motion picture]. United States:
American Psychological association (Producer). (1992). Biodiversity Matters [Motion picture]. (Available from
Changing Our Minds, Inc,., 170 West End Avenue, suite 25R, New York, NY 10023)
Name or producer or director. (tell whose name it is – producer or director). (year film made). Title of movie or tv series)
[tell whether movie or television show]. (how to get movie)
Robertson, J. (2000). Planning for College. The College Board. Retrieved June 7, 2000, from http://
Author. (date written). Title of article. Title of website. Retrieved date, from URL address
Research and Training Center for Science Fairs. (2009). Guidelines for presenting a science fair project (3 rd ed.)
[Brochure]. Meridian, MS: Putnam, S.
Author. (date). Title ( edition) [Brochure]. Location: Publisher.
Smith, J. Veterinarian. 611 Owens Street, Columbia, MS 39429. (August 15, 2009).
Person, Occupation, Address, Date interviewed or contacted
More about an Interview
Because this is not recoverable data, it is not supposed to be included in the bibliography. It should be cited within the report,
but for all grade leel purposes, we will list it in the bibliography.
Include a summary of the interview in the log book or journal you kept of the work you did on your science fair project.
*Bibliography: List the sources in alphabetical order using the author's last name. If a source has more than
one author, alphabetize using the first one. If an author is unknown, alphabetize that source using the title
Your log book should contain accurate and detailed notes of everything you
do for your research project. Good notes will show you are consistent and
thorough. It will also help you when you write your ABSTRACT, RESEARCH
PAPER, and DISPLAY.
1. Use the logbook like a diary or journal. Date everything and record
everything about your project and results.
2. A log book is a notebook that must be bound with stitching
or glue so that the pages are not removable.
2. Your log book should be written in ink only. Do not use
pencil or printouts from a computer (except graphs and charts).
Your Log Book
3. Put your name and school on the back of your log book. Put
the title of your project on the front.
4. Include notes on readings and bibliographic
5. Include your thoughts, ideas, and trials.
6. Include your raw data (all of the measurements you collect during your experimental trials).
7. Staple in copies of graphs or charts.
8. Attach photos and label them.
9. Date every entry and enter each science activity you do.
10. Do not try to make your log book neat. It should be readable, but you may cross out information you
don’t want as you work. Never remove pages from your logbook and never use white out.
Write about your topic in your log book.
Write all of your thoughts, ideas, what you know already about your topic.
Remember to date the pages.
Write in your log book at least two times a week.
You can start looking up information about your topic.
Web sites and reference books are a good start. If you can, contact someone who works with anything to
do with your topic.
This is a great source of information and a possible way to work with an expert.
Add any information you gather into your log book.
DO NOT START YOUR EXPERIMENT
BEFORE THE SCIENCE FAIR COMMITTEE
APPROVES YOUR PROJECT!!!
REMEMBER: SAFETY FIRST
Parental Supervision is required if using sharp
objects or fire.
Wear Protective Eye Wear if there is a possibility of
splashing or flying materials.
Follow your project plan carefully. Do not change it unless you
get permission to do so. Remember it has been approved.
Keep detailed log book notes in ink of every experiment, measurement, and observation you do. Be sure to
include things that don’t work as well as the ones that do. You will use all of this information later, so take
Keep your procedure controlled and exact. Think about what you are doing and how you might explain to
someone else so that they can do it exactly the same to get the same results.
Only test 1 variable at a time.
Remember to include the following in your experiment:
Control Group This is the set of test items that are treated normally. It is a parallel experiment omitting
the procedure being done to the other trial. It is used as a standard of comparison in judging effects.
Experimental Groups Sets of test items that undergo the various manipulations of variables.
Large Sample Size Use at least 5 test items per experimental group. The greater the number used the
Repetition Repeat your trials many times to collect enough data to average and to demonstrate the validity
of your method.
Re-Do or Extend the Experiment If the experiment is flawed or leads to other needed information, be
prepared to revise or extend the experiment until an answer can be deduced.
Seek to Understand your Data Record Data as you perform the experiment. When finished, evaluate
Fill in the data tables and use the data to create graphs.
Collect and prepare other forms of data-recordings, photos, drawings-that will support your
Develop descriptions, explanations, predictions, and models.
Think critically and logically to make the relationships between evidence and explanations.
Recognize and analyze alternative explanations and predictions
Record Results and Analyze Data
Use tables and charts to
organize data as you do
Use graphs to visually
display your final data.
On your BOARD.
Keep this in the Logbook.
Used to show the relationship
A good data table includes a title that describes the
information being collected, and it identifies the
variable and the unit being collected on each data line.
All data is totaled and a
percentage is determined for each
Time (seconds) / Distance (meters) / Electricity (volts)
Used to compare data.
Growth of mutant tomato plants
Determine the Boiling Point of Substance x
Degrees from University of Southern Mississippi,
Science Fair PowerPoint: A Guide to Science Fairs,
Science and Math Education Outreach Program
Used to show data results over a period of time.
Heating of martian mucus
T im e (m in )
REPORT - Science Fair PROJECT Report
Write a full and complete explanation of your science story. Use
For your Science & Engineering Project you will write a report
about your total experience. Most of this is already written in your
Just add a few more explanations about how it actually happened and include graphs,
charts, and photos.
Check your sentence structure and spelling.
Write as if you are someone on the outside looking in.
Contents of the Report:
Title Page - include project title
Table of Contents - number each section and list here. Do this last.
Introduction - use background information, question, purpose, and hypothesis.
Materials & Procedures - write detailed material lists and step-by-step procedure instructions
Results, Photographs, Drawings -- present results in tables and graphs, and explain in words. Do not
use raw data. Discuss problems or errors that may have happened. Show pictures.
Conclusions - summarize results and share your conclusion. Tell whether or not data supported the
Acknowledgments/Credits - thank those that helped: mentors, parents, teachers, etc.
Bibliography - list the reference materials used in alphabetical order: books, websites,
papers, journal articles, and communication with experts.
Type your report on the computer and print out a nice copy, or neatly write by hand.
SAVE YOUR WORK ON YOUR COMPUTER AND ON AN EXTERNAL DRIVE
KEEP A PAPER COPY FOR YOURSELF
Put the copy in a notebook along with completed necessary forms and any other written
material you want the judges to see.
Remember to save you work
Always Project Report Template
…State the question you wanted to answer
…not because your science teacher told you to
…Write about why you were interested in this topic and what you hoped to learn.
…a statement that is testable. If ____________________, then ____________________.
Independent variable (IV): the one factor being tested (changed in each trial)
Dependent Variable (DV): the result
Constants: the factors that must be kept the same to ensure that only the IV is causing the result
…list the materials you used
…tell steps in a way that others can replicate the experiment
…include the variables and control
…tell how many trials you performed and observed
…IF YOU HAVE TO START OVER, EXPLAIN WHAT HAPPENED SO WE UNDERSTAND WHY
…State your findings – what happened as a result of your experiment
Data: Charts / Tables
… Show the numbers
Graphs or Pictures showing sequence of events if data is qualitative
…state whether your hypothesis was supported or not
… state why or what makes you draw this conclusion
Other Notable factors
…ways you could make your experiment better, things that happened that affected the outcome of your experiment
…Thank people who helped you and give credit to those who deserve it
Writing an Abstract
An abstract is a short summary of your complete project. It is limited to 250 words or less.
Writing your abstract.
Most of the information has already been written into your log book and project report. The purpose of an
abstract is to allow someone to quickly understand what your project was about and what the result was.
You should include:
TITLE Keep the title brief and descriptive. Think of someone reading just the title and having a very
good idea of what your project is all about.
QUESTION / PROBLEM Look at the copy of the Research Plan. Can you make a short sentence or two saying the
PURPOSE Again, look at the copy of the Research Plan. Can you make a short sentence or two saying the same
HYPOTHESIS RULE! Even if your result did not match your hypothesis, Do NOT re-word your hypothesis. You
should use it just the way you wrote it in the Research Plan.
DESIGN AND TESTING CRITERIA For Engineering projects, include a brief description of your criteria.
PROCEDURES You do not need to list the materials in an abstract. Summarize the procedures by being less
specific than in the Research Plan. Some details may be necessary in order to explain the process best.
RESULTS Make this a short summary of results, using medians, means, and modes.
CONCLUSIONS Tell what the results mean and whether or not the hypothesis was supported.
Rules for Abstracts
• Abstracts must be typed or printed from a computer
• Limited to 250 words or less
• The abstract must be present in front of your display as a single document. Do not glue it to the board or
put it in the binder with the other reports and information
• Do not include cover sheets, graphics, or pictures
Title of Your Project
My hypothesis stated that _______________________________________________________________________
To test my hypothesis I _________________(summarize your procedures)_______________________________________
In conclusion, my hypothesis was (supported or not supported) because _______________________________________.
No Faces in pictures
Do not put your name on anything
except the back of each item
Use your title as your identifying
name and use it on everything
Keep a copy of everything at home
ON THE BOARD:
• Question, Purpose, Hypothesis
• Materials, Procedures
• Results, Charts / Graphs
• Photos, illustrations
IN FRONT OF THE BOARD:
• Folder or Notebook including
o Background Research Report
o Project Report
ON BACK OF BOARD:
• Title of Project
• School Name
Your display should SHOW and TELL. Make it visual, easy to follow, and informative.
• Keep it simple. Use a large colorful title and subtitles. Use bullets instead of paragraphs to discuss your project under each
• Use photos. You must have written permission from any individuals other than yourself in photos used on the display. Have
someone take photos of you during experimentation. Take pictures of your results, too. Do not include faces in your photos. Do
not include any disturbing photos.
• Be organized. Your display should be logically presented and easy to read. Follow the path of the Scientific Method or
Engineering Method from left to right, top to bottom.
• Have a Good Title. Simply and accurately represent your research. Use the same title on all your forms.
• Easy to Read. Your font size should be readable from at least 3 feet away. Your title should be in large letters, but not
overwhelm the board. Your subtitles should stand out and be easy to find.
• Follow the Rules. Your display is restricted by certain size, safety rules and what can be displayed. Please read the Rule
Book for details. Display all required and completed forms in your project notebook on the table in front of your display.
Practice for the Judging Process….I DO Say PRACTICE!
The Judging at a Science & Engineering Fair is usually done
by professionals in the field, teachers, and professors. The
style of questioning is informal and personal. Have others
pretend to be the judges to help you prepare.
Science Fair Checklist:
• Make sure you have all the parts of your project.
• Dress nicely.
• Use the restroom before judging.
• DO NOT leave your project area until the Science Fair
Coordinator announces your dismissal.
Usually 1 to 3 judges will come to you. They want to talk to you about your project. They
want to know if you learned anything new and if you did your project yourself.
Prepare a One to Two Minute Oral Presentation Ahead of Time:
Hello. My name is _________________________. I am a ________ grade student at _________________School.
The title of my project is ____________. The question I tried to answer was _____________________. I got
interested in the topic because _____________________________. My hypothesis was ___________________. I
investigated the works of ______________________ and _______________ to learn what they found about the
topic. The procedure I used to test my original hypothesis was to _________________. As a result of my
first investigation, I learned _________________________________. I then changed my procedure to include
______________________. My results, shown on these charts, graphs and in my paper, are _________________.
As a result of my investigation, I proved ________________________, but in the future, I’d like to try
_______________________ as a slightly different investigation. To me, my project is a very valuable one
because I can use the results in my everyday life when I ________________________. Do you have any
questions about my study? Thank you for judging my project.
Some of the questions judges might ask:
How did you get interested in this topic?
Where did your idea come from?
What question did you ask?
Why did you choose this project?
What was the hardest thing you had to do?
What experiment did you do to try to answer your question?
What did you think was going to happen in your experiment?
What happened? Were you surprised by the results? Did anything else surprise
What did you learn?
What was most interesting to you about your project?
If you were going to do the experiment again, would you change anything?
What part did you do? What did you get help with?
JUDGING – ISEF Criteria
I. Creative Ability (Individual—30)
1. Does the project show creative ability and originality in the questions asked?
• the approach to solving the problem?, the analysis of the data?, the interpretation of the data?
• the use of equipment?, the construction or design of new equipment?
2. Creative research should support an investigation and help answer a question in an original way.
3. A creative contribution promotes an efficient and reliable method for solving a problem. When evaluating projects, it is important to
distinguish between gadgeteering and ingenuity.
II a. Scientific Thought (Individual—30)
1. Is the problem stated clearly and unambiguously?
2. Was the problem sufficiently limited to allow plausible approach? Good scientists can identify important problems capable of solutions.
3. Was there a procedural plan for obtaining a solution?
4. Are the variables clearly recognized and defined?
5. If controls were necessary, did the student recognize their need and were they correctly used?
6. Are there adequate data to support the conclusions?
7. Does the Finalist or team recognize the data’s limitations?
8. Does the Finalist/team understand the project’s ties to related research?
9. Does the Finalist/team have an idea of what further research is warranted?
10. Did the Finalist/team cite scientific literature, or only popular literature (i.e., local newspapers, Reader’s Digest).
III. Thoroughness (Individual—15)
1. Was the purpose carried out to completion within the scope of the original intent?
2. How completely was the problem covered?
3. Are the conclusions based on a single experiment or replication?
4. How complete are the project notes?
5. Is the Finalist/team aware of other approaches or theories?
6. How much time did the finalist or team spend on the project?
7. Is the finalist/team familiar with scientific literature in the studied field?
IV. Skill (Individual—15)
1. Does the finalist/team have the required laboratory, computation, observational and design skills to obtain supporting data?
2. Where was the project performed (i.e., home, school laboratory, university laboratory)? Did the student or team receive assistance from
parents, teachers, scientists or engineers?
3. Was the project completed under adult supervision, or did the student/team work largely alone?
4. Where did the equipment come from? Was it built independently by the Finalist or team? Was it obtained on loan? Was it part of a
laboratory where the Finalist or team worked?
V. Clarity (Individual—10)
1. How clearly does the Finalist discuss his/her project and explain the purpose, procedure, and conclusions? Watch out for memorized
speeches that reflect little understanding of principles.
2. Does the written material reflect the Finalist’s understanding of the research?
3. Are the important phases of the project presented in an orderly manner?
4. How clearly is the data presented?
5. How clearly are the results presented?
6. How well does the project display explain the project?
7. Was the presentation done in a forthright manner, without tricks or gadgets?
8. Did the Finalist/team perform all the project work, or did someone help?
Science Fair Project Judging / Grading Rubric
Bradenton Prep. Academy
Project Title ______________________________________________________
Board Number ________
Category ________________________________ Extra Credit ______ Score ______ Total Score __________
The Following is a Rubric for Assessing each Part of Your Science Project.
Did not do
a project Late, incomplete
Late, all parts present
On time, missing some
On time and all parts present:
board, log book, forms, report,
Not used consistently
within the project. Did Almost complete, but some
details are missing.
Title or a couple
Messy, did not include
all information, incorrect
Log Book with
less than 5
Written with If or Then,
Written with if and then, but
Written correctly and is
but not both. Not a
or as a question.
used pronouns. Hypothesis
complete hypothesis or a
makes sense otherwise. Written as an if/then statement.
Complete, replicable, used
Project had too
Participant did more than Participant did many trials and
Project one trial, but one trial, and used variables
used variables correctly.
Missing Or was a display used variables correctly correctly. The test matched
Methods were explained
Missing parts and does
not show full
A single reference,
project at all
Could not explain much
about the project
States hypothesis, summarizes
procedures, and writes
conclusion. Less than 250
Incomplete log book, or
Log book mostly complete, Log book contains details and
log book does not make
but not enough details
Missing some categories
Does not summarize all
activities or too long
Missing 1 part, but done
All parts present and correctly
done with clearly stated
thoughts which relate to the
project. (bibliography graded
Required categories, but
does not show correct
Well organized presentation,
all required categories present.
Correctly communicates its
Several references with
At least 6 references, listed in
appropriate format (add + if
Well spoken, explained
Explained project, but could
project’s question, hypothesis,
not explain results or
procedures, data and
Displayed, but not
Tables and figures
Tables and figures used
consistent with project’s incomplete or with error.
Conclusion not reasonable. Logical conclusion was drawn.
Project’s parts do not Project’s parts support each
support each other, but
follow some logic.
All forms completed, signed,
and neatly placed with project
All parts of the project
represent one thought.
Great Effort was given.