Information

Important Dates & Times

Thursday November 29, 2018 at 9:00 AM
Thursday February 28, 2019 at 12:00 PM
Tuesday April 02, 2019 at 9:00 AM
Tuesday April 02, 2019 at 4:00 PM
Tuesday April 02, 2019 at 9:00 AM

SIM_science_fair_without_year.jpg

2019 Eligibility Rules

1. Affiliated Fair. Participation in the SIM Science & Engineering Fair (SIMSEF) is open to students attending a public school, private school, or charter school located within San Bernardino, Inyo, or Mono Counties. Home-schooled students may participate in SIMSEF through the public school in San Bernardino, Inyo, or Mono Counties that they would attend if they were not home schooled, at the discretion and approval of the public school or school district administration. Students must advance to the SIMSEF by participating in a district or affiliate fair prior to advancing to the county level.

2. Divisions. Each applicant must be a student enrolled in grades 4-12 at the time of qualification. Students in grades 4-5 participate in the Elementary Division; students in grades 6-8 participate in the Junior Division; while students in grades 9-12 participate in the Senior Division. The division for team projects with students in different grades is determined by the highest grade represented.

3. Single Entry. Each student may enter only one project each year. Each project may have one to three authors. Team projects will be placed in competition with individual projects in the same categories, though judging panels will have a higher level of expectation for team projects commensurate with the number of students on the team. All work must be done by the student(s) named as author(s). Projects entered into the Fair under an individual's name but discovered by the judging panel to have been prepared by a team of more than one student will be disqualified.

4. Category Assignment. Students will indicate desired project category during online registration. Desired project categories will be reviewed during registration/abstract review. At such time, some projects may be reassigned to more appropriate categories as determined by the review committee. SIMSEF reserves the right to disqualify any project due to poor quality, incompleteness, or inappropriateness of project content.

5. New Research. Any project reentered from a past Regional Fair must show substantial new research and development to be eligible for an award. Final determination will be made by the category judges.

6. Supervision. Students not accompanied by their own parent(s) must be under authorized supervision by an adult escort, teacher, or administrator. Each student must have appropriate signed permission form(s) as required by his/her own school district. SIMSEF is not responsible for the supervision of any participant.

All Eligible Projects Will Not Necessarily Be Accepted. Each affiliated fair has been allocated a maximum number of projects which it may qualify to SIMSEF.

For a more detailed set of rules and regulations please see Pages 7-10 of the SIMSEF Handbook.

Please see the SIM Handbook 2018-2019 for any and all questions or clarifications.

SIMSEF Handbook 2018-2019, UPDATED 12-5-18

 

 

About Us

The San Bernardino, Inyo and Mono Counties (SIM) Science and Engineering Fair is an annual competition of science projects designed, developed and displayed by elementary and secondary students from schools in each county.

Participants share their creative abilities, knowledge, and interests with other students. Experienced judges, with background knowledge in specific areas of science critique the projects for qualities including scientific method, content, clarity of presentation and originality.

 

Please see the SIM Handbook 2018-2019 for any and all questions or clarifications.

SIMSEF Handbook 2018-2019, UPDATED 12-5-18

What to Expect During the Fair

EVENT SCHEDULE 

April 2, 2019 

Tuesday 

Safety screening of all projects 

7:00 – 9:00 a.m. 

Elementary project setup (Grades 4-5) 

7:00 – 9:00 a.m. 

Elementary judging (Grades 4-5 do not stay on site, not interviewed) 

9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. 

Junior/senior project setup (Grades 6-12) 

7:00 – 8:30 a.m. 

Orientation for juniors/seniors 

8:30 – 9:00 a.m. 

Junior/senior judging and interviews (Students only) 

9:00 – 10:45 a.m. 

Break for students (Location: TBD) – Snack provided for students 

10:45 – 10:55 a.m. 

Junior/senior judging and interviews (Students only) 

10:55 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 

Break for students (Location: TBD) – Lunch provided for students 

12:00 p.m. – 12:25 p.m. 

Junior/senior judging and interviews (Students only) 

12:25 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. 

Juniors/seniors dismissed for the day 

2:00 p.m. 

Project removal 

4:30 – 6:00 p.m. 

April 3, 2019 

Wednesday 

Project removal 

7:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 

April 4, 2019 

Thursday 

SIM Science & Engineering Fair Awards Ceremony 

5:30 – 8:00 p.m. 

Meeting for projects advancing to California State Science Fair (6-12th grade only) 

8:00 p.m. (immediately following awards ceremony) 

NOTE:   Please be advised student lunches are provided, however, if students have special dietary needs and/or allergies they are welcome to bring a lunch that meets their dietary needs. A snack will only be provided at the morning break. 

 

PROJECT SET UP AND REMOVAL 

Set Up: All projects must be delivered and set up at the indicated group time (listed above). All projects must pass the onsite safety inspection before they can be checked in and set up. Projects may be delivered and set up by a parent, teacher, or other designated person if the participant is unable to do so personally. 

 

Removal: Projects must be removed on either Tuesday, April 2, 2019 from 4:30 – 6:00 p.m. or Wednesday, April 3, 2019 from 7:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. No projects may be removed before this time or after this time. Projects not picked up by 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, 2019 will be disposed/discarded of immediately. All projects removed from the Fair must be signed out by the student or a designee (chosen by student). Designees must have approval from the student (or group) to remove their project. Designees will sign a statement confirming that they are approved to remove the project.

 

Please see the SIM Handbook 2018-2019 for any and all questions or clarifications.

SIMSEF Handbook 2018-2019, UPDATED 12-5-18

Elementary - 01 - Behavior Science
Studies of behavior, conditioned responses, learning, psychiatry, or psychology in human and other animals.
Elementary - 02 - Biology Animals
Studies of vertebrate or invertebrate zoology.
Elementary - 03 - Biology/Other Kingdoms
Studies of plants, fungi, protists, and bacteria.
Elementary - 04 - Chemistry
Studies of chemical and physical properties of organic and inorganic materials.
Elementary - 05 - Consumer Science
Examination, comparison, analysis, testing of manufactured devices or trade name chemicals, materials, etc. Product quality, safety, and consumer satisfaction.
Elementary - 06 - Earth Science
Studies of geology, meteorology, oceanography, astronomy and space science.
Elementary - 07 - Engineering
Projects that follow the Engineering Design Process to develop solutions by building and testing prototypes of new or improved devices.
Elementary - 08 - Environmental Education
Projects using biological systems/organisms to study the impact of natural and man-made changes on our environment.
Elementary - 09 - Math
Studies in geometry, topology, number theory, statistics, computer graphics, artificial intelligence and modeling or stimulations.
Elementary - 10 - Physics
Studies of electricity, magnetism, aerodynamics, energy, physical properties of matter and applied mechanics.
Grades 6-8 - J01 - Aerodynamics/ Hydrodynamics (Junior Division only)
Studies of aerodynamics and propulsion of air, land, water and space vehicles; aero/ hydrodynamics of structures and natural objects. Studies of the basic physics of fluid flow.

What Belongs:
Effect of Dimples on Golf Ball Flight; Airfoil Stall Characteristics; Effect of Fins on Water Rocket Stability; Low Drag Launch Lug for Model Rockets.

What Doesn't Belong:
Ballistics studies comparing other than different shapes or surface textures belong in Materials Science or Applied Mechanics. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in Applied Mechanics.
Grades 6-8 - J02 - Alternative Energy (Junior Division only)
Studies of power generation using alternative energy technologies such as solar cells.

What Belongs:
Analysis of Nanocrystal Dye-sensitized Solar Cells; Maximizing the Power Output of a Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Module through the Use of Solar Concentrators.

What Doesn't Belong:
Ballistics studies comparing other than different shapes or surface textures belong in Materials Science or Applied Mechanics. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in Applied Mechanics.
Grades 6-8 - J03 - Applied Mechanics & Structures
Studies concerning the design, manufacture and operation of mechanisms, including characteristics of materials, dynamic response and active/ passive control. Testing for strength and stiffness of materials used to provide structural capability; studies and testing of structural configurations designed to provide improved weight and force loading or stiffness capabilities. Senior Division only: includes aerodynamics, hydrodynamics and fluids projects.

What Belongs:
An Underwater Glider for Marine Exploration; Measurement of CD Variations; Tensile Strength of Composite Materials; Bridge Design; Can Foam Make Steel Stronger?; How Does Arch Curvature Affect Strength? How Do Different Foundations Stand Up to Earthquakes? Sr. Div: “Arrow” Dynamics; Measuring the Effect of Aerodynamic Design on Vehicular Drag.

What Doesn't Belong:
Junior Division aerodynamics/ hydrodynamics projects belong in Aerodynamics/Hydrodynamics. Engineering studies of soil stability during earthquakes belong in Earth & Atmospheric Sciences.
Grades 6-8 - J04 - Behavioral & Social Sciences
Studies of human psychology, behavior, development, linguistics and the effects of chemical or physical stress on these processes. Experimental or observational studies of attitudes, behaviors, or values of a society or groups within a society and of the influences of society on group behavior. Includes gender and diversity studies, anthropology, archaeology and sociology. Studies may focus on either normal or abnormal behavior.?Senior Division only: includes studies of cognition.

What Belongs:
A Study of the Senses in Stress Management; Racial Awareness in Infants; AIDS Awareness in Teens; The Effect of Authority Figures on Group Decision Making

What Doesn't Belong:
Animal behavior projects belong in Zoology or Mammalian Biology. Junior Division projects studying memory, learning, and sensory perception belong in Cognitive Science.
Grades 6-8 - J05 - Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology
Studies at the molecular, biochemical, or enzymatic levels in animals (including humans), plants and microorganisms, including yeast. Studies of biological molecules, e.g., DNA, RNA, proteins, fats, vitamins, nutrients.

What Belongs:
Lipooxygenase Influence on Lipofuscin Granule Formation in Bananas; Effects of P1 Precursors on Virus Growth; Isolation of Pre-mRNA Mutants in Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Determination of Ascorbic Acid Concentration in Orange Juice Using a Redox Reaction; Effects of Food Preparation on Vitamins.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the physical properties of biochemicals such as oxidation reduction reactions belong in Chemistry. Functions of major organ systems belong in Mammalian Biology or Zoology.
Grades 6-8 - J06 - Chemistry
Studies in which chemical properties of nonbiological organic and inorganic materials (excluding biochemistry) are observed. Some studies involving physical properties are appropriate, including phase changes, crystal structures and formation, intermolecular and intramolecular forces.

What Belongs:
Isolation, Purification, and Specific Rotation Determination of Ricinoleic Acid; Conductivity of Electrolytes; Does Water Purity Affect Surface Tension?
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Chemical studies of metabolic processes (e.g. fermentation and/or yeast), processes mediated by biochemical intermediates (e.g. enzymes), or biological organic molecules belong in Biochemistry. In the Junior Division, projects that deal with the characterization of chemical products in everyday life belong in Materials Science or Product Science (Physical).
Grades 6-8 - J07 - Cognitive Science (Junior Division only):
Studies of learning, memory and cognition in humans, using human or animal models for human processes. Studies of the effects of chemical or physical stress on cognition. Includes projects on subliminal perception, optical illusions, recall and observations (e.g.?reliability of eyewitnesses), and the interaction of different senses.

What Belongs:
Does Age Affect Implicit Learning?; The Effectiveness of Flash Cards vs. Computer Scripts; Optical Illusions; Subliminal Persuasion by Television; Eyewitness Identifications; Effect of Curcumin on Memory.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Studies examining basic human senses and physiological, rather than psychological, reactions belong in Mammalian Biology. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in Behavioral and Social Sciences.
Grades 6-8 - J08 - Computational Systems & Analysis:
Studies that focus primarily on the development or use of computational systems for applications in the biological, physical, or engineering sciences, such as analyzing big data, modeling and simulations, autonomous navigation, and bioinformatics.

What Belongs:
Neural Network Model to Predict Future Body Mass Index; Safecopter: Developing a Collision Avoidance System Based on an Array of Time-of-Flight 3D Cameras; Using Artificial Intelligence Systems for Autonomous Visual Comprehension and Handwriting Generation; Value of Splines in Modeling the Extragalactic Background Light; Assessing the Practicality of Asteroid Deflection Strategies Using Simulation; Mathematical Models of Cancer Development in the Human Digestive System.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects using computers or mathematics as a tool (without developing a program or a model) or that include actual experimentation to study a different subject belong in that category. For example, a computer-based analysis to identify obesity driver genes would belong here, but if the project also experimented with those genes it would then belong in Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology. Computer hardware projects belong in Electronics & Electromagnetics.
Grades 6-8 - J09 - Earth & Atmospheric Sciences (Junior Division only):
Studies in geology, seismology, physical oceanography, marine geology, coastal processes, atmospheric physics and chemistry, meteorology and climatology including measurements, models and the effects of climate change.

What Belongs:
Gravity Current Velocities; Beach Sand Fluctuations and Cliff Erosion; Dependence of Liquefaction upon Soil Composition; Influence of Site Effects on Peak Ground Acceleration in the Northridge and Whittier Narrows Earthquakes; Solar Activity and Refraction Properties of the Ionosphere. The Effect of CO(2)-Induced Carbonic Acid on Calcium Carbonate in Sea Water
{brl} What Doesn't Belong:
Studies concerning human-caused pollution and its effects on the environment, other than climate, belong in Environmental Science. Studies of methods to mitigate pollution's effects on the environment, including climate, belong in Environmental Engineering. Earthquake engineering projects (other than soil stability) belong in Applied Mechanics & Structures. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in Environmental Science (climate) or the relevant basic science (e.g., Physics & Astronomy, Chemistry, etc.).
Grades 6-8 - J10 - Electronics & Electromagnetics:
Studies in geology, seismology, physical oceanography, marine geology, coastal Experimental or theoretical studies with electrical circuits, computer design, electro-optics, electromagnetic applications and antennas.

What Belongs:
Satellite Reception Without a Dish; The Gauss Rifle; Transmission of Information by Laser; Are Maglev Trains Practical?
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects that merely use electronics to study something else (e.g., hearing in birds) belong in another category (Zoology in this example).
Grades 6-8 - J11 - Environmental Engineering:
Projects which apply technologies such as recycling, reclamation, restoration, composting and bioremediation which could benefit the environment and/or the effects of pollution on the environment.

What Belongs:
Newspapers as Mulch; Oil Control; Water Hyacinth: Primary Water Treatment?; What Soil Conditions Best Control Soil Erosion While Assisting Growth?; Designing a New Home Sewer System.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects that measure or survey environmental impacts without any mitigation of those impacts belong in Environmental Science or Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. Projects that study the mitigation of climate change through alternative energy production belong in Alternative Energy.
Grades 6-8 - J12 - Environmental Science:
Projects surveying, measuring, or studying the impact of natural and man-made changes on the environment. Examples include: floods, fires, biohazardous spills, acid rain, earthquakes, air pollution and water pollution.

What Belongs:
The Effects of Fires on Flora and Fauna; How Does Water Quality Affect the Abundance and Diversity of Micro-invertebrates; Bacteria Pollution in Our Beaches; An Analysis of Dissolved Oxygen and Density in Ballona Creek.

What Doesn't Belong:
Junior Division studies that measure or model climate change and its effects belong in Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. Studies of methods to mitigate pollution's effects on the environment, including climate, belong in Environmental Engineering. Studies performed under unrealistic or simulated conditions to examine the negative effects of substances or conditions on living things belong in Toxicology.
Grades 6-8 - J13 - Mammalian Biology:
Studies of growth and developmental biology, anatomy and physiology in all mammals, including humans. Studies of the behavior of all mammals in their natural habitats (or reproductions of them).

What Belongs:
Effect of Age on Aerobic Abilities; Peripheral Vision; Correlation of Strength with Gender; Effect of Vaccination on Antibody Development in Neonatal Bovines.Lung Capacity, Age, and Exercise; Crossed Hand-Eye Dominance

What Doesn't Belong:
Projects studying physiology of birds, insects, etc. belong in Zoology. Studies of the effect of chemicals on a physiological function may belong in Toxicology. Studies in which animals serve as a model for human learning or behavior belong in Cognitive Science (Jr) or Behavioral & Social Sciences (Sr).
Grades 6-8 - J14 - Materials Science (Junior Division only):
Studies of materials characteristics and their static (not in motion) physical properties. Includes measurements and comparisons of materials durability, flammability and insulation properties (thermal, electrical, acoustic, optical, electromagnetic, etc.).

What Belongs:
Which Metal Conducts the Most Heat? What Is the Effect of Duct Tape as an Insulation Material? Sun Protection on the Courts: A Test of Colors and Materials in Tennis Clothing; Which Building Material Disrupts a Wireless Connection the Least?

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of fundamental properties of matter (e.g., specific heat) belong in Physics and Astronomy. Studies comparing and testing natural and manmade products for effectiveness in intended use in real-world, consumer-oriented applications belong in Product Science (Physical).
Grades 6-8 - J15 - Mathematical Sciences:
Studies of mathematics (e.g., algebra, geometry, logic), and computer science (e.g., artificial intelligence, and the design, improvement, or optimization of algorithms, computer languages, operating systems, or software architecture.)

What Belongs:
Maximally Dispersed Points on a Sphere; Knot Mathematics; Mathematical Optimization of Multiple Precision Multiplication; Computerized Deductive Reasoning Using Bipartite Rules; Using Global Optimization to Separate Mixed Signals in a Noisy Environment; The Algebra and Geometry of Quasicategories; A Combinatorial Proof for the Geometric Series, Binomial Theorem, and the Square of a Polynomial with Tiling

What Doesn't Belong:
Computer programming projects belong in Computational Systems & Analysis. Projects using mathematics or computers as a tool to study a different subject, that develop an engineering solution, or that lead to a specific experiment, belong in that category.
Grades 6-8 - J16 - Microbiology (General):
Studies of genetics, growth and physiology of bacteria, fungi, protists, algae, or viruses. Includes surveys of bacterial contamination.?Senior Division Only:?includes projects described within the category Microbiology (Medical).

What Belongs:
Studies of Light Producing Bacteria; Enhancement of Algae Lipid Composition through the Manipulation of Temperature, Light, and Nutrient Levels; The Utilization of a Photobioreactor to Optimize the Growth Rate of Lipids in Microalga.

What Doesn't Belong:
Projects studying photosynthesis or fermentation belong in Biochemistry. Projects using bacteria as a tool to study another subject belong in that subject.
Grades 6-8 - J17 - Microbiology - Medical (Junior Division only):
Studies of prevention, diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases caused by pathogenic bacteria, fungi, or viruses. Includes all antimicrobial studies except testing of commercial antimicrobials.

What Belongs:
Effects of Spices on Escherichia coli growth on food; Antibiotic Resistance in Bacteria; Effects of Hand Washing on Absenteeism in Schools

What Doesn't Belong:
Projects using bacteria as a tool to study another subject belong in that subject. Testing of commercial antimicrobial products belongs in Product Science (Biological). Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in Microbiology (General).
Grades 6-8 - J18 - Physics & Astronomy:
Studies of the physical properties of matter, light, acoustics, thermal properties, solar physics, astrophysics, orbital mechanics, observational astronomy, planetary science and astronomical surveys. Computer simulations of physical systems are appropriate in this category.

What Belongs:
Emissivity as a Function of Geometry; Do High Temperature Superconductors have a First Order Phase Transition?; Chaotic Pendulum; Photometric Detection of an Extrasolar Planetary Transit; Jupiter's Decametric Emission; Solar Activity and Geosynchronous Satellites.

What Doesn't Belong:
Electromagnetic propagation studies (e.g., antennas) belong in Electronics & Electromagnetics. Junior Division projects studying the characteristics of materials such as insulation properties belong in Materials Science.
Grades 6-8 - J19 - Plant Biology:
Studies of the genetics, growth, morphology, or physiology of plants. Studies of the effects of fertilizers on plants.

What Belongs:
Emissivity as a Function of Geometry; Do High Temperature Superconductors have a The Effects of Organic and Inorganic Fertilizers on Plant Growth; Effect of Rhizobium on Legume Plants (Pisum); Transpiration of Plants Under Different Light Sources.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies using plants for indication or remediation of environmental pollution belong in the appropriate environmental category. Studies of the negative effects of chemicals on plants belong in Toxicology.
Grades 6-8 - J20 - Product Science - Biological (Junior Division only):
Comparison and testing of commercial off-the-shelf products for quality and/or effectiveness for intended use in real-world consumer-oriented applications. This category is reserved for experimental methods involving biological sciences and processes

What Belongs:
Preventing Pumpkin Decomposition; Antibacterial Soap vs. Antibacterial Gel: Cause for Concern? Tylenol Brand vs. Store Brand Acetaminophen; Does Orange Oil Really Work?

What Doesn't Belong:
Biological studies that do not include a commercial off-the-shelf product but are only testing potentially new consumer applications belong in their respective Life Science Category. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in the relevant basic science.
Grades 6-8 - J21 - Product Science - Physical (Junior Division only):
Comparison and testing of commercial off-the-shelf products for quality and/or effectiveness for intended use in real-world consumer-oriented applications. This category is reserved for experimental methods involving non-biological, physical sciences and processes.

What Belongs:
Water Absorption in Eight Selected Hardwoods With and Without Sealants; Best Plywood for Homemade Skateboards; Cotton, Linen, Wool: Which One Lasts Longer?; Fire Resistance of Roofing Materials; Which Laundry Detergent Works the Best? Shock Attenuation in Baseball Helmets.

What Doesn't Belong:
Non-biological studies that do not include a commercial off-the-shelf product but are only testing potentially new consumer applications belong in their respective Physical Science category. Senior Division projects otherwise appropriate for this category belong in the relevant basic science.
Grades 6-8 - J22 - Toxicology:
Studies of the effects of the negative effects of chemicals, toxins, medicinal and nutritional factors, prescription drugs, natural remedies, food components (caffeine) and other potentially harmful factors (such as temperature, carbon dioxide, radiation) at the cellular or higher levels on plants and animals.

What Belongs:
Effect of Caffeine on Daphnia; Copper Toxicity of Marine Embryos; The Effects of Intermittent and Constant EMFs on Drosophila; The Effects of Petroleum Contaminated Water on Aquatic Plants.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the positive or beneficial effects of external factors such as nutritional components, medicines, vitamins, natural remedies, and fertilizers, belong in the relevant basic life science (e.g., Mammalian Biology, Zoology, Plant Biology, etc.) Studies of changes in actual ecosystems due to pollution belong in Environmental Science.
Grades 6-8 - J23 - Zoology:
Studies of growth and developmental biology, anatomy and physiology in animals other than mammals. Studies of the behavior of all animals (excluding mammals) in their natural habitats (or reproductions of them).

What Belongs:
Hot Fish, Cold Fish: Respiration in Goldfish; Hearing and the Dominance Hierarchy of Crickets; Effect of Gravity on Living Organisms; Invertebrates in Kelp Holdfasts; Auditory Stimuli in Interganglial Neurons of Acheta domesticus; Bird Responses to Boar Rootings.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the positive or beneficial effects of external factors such as nutritional Studies of mammals belong in Mammalian Biology. Studies in which animals serve as a model for human behavior belong in Behavioral & Social Sciences.
Grades 9-12 - S03 - Applied Mechanics & Structures
Studies concerning the design, manufacture and operation of mechanisms, including characteristics of materials, dynamic response and active/ passive control. Testing for strength and stiffness of materials used to provide structural capability; studies and testing of structural configurations designed to provide improved weight and force loading or stiffness capabilities. Senior Division only: includes aerodynamics, hydrodynamics and fluids projects.

What Belongs:
An Underwater Glider for Marine Exploration; Measurement of CD Variations; Tensile Strength of Composite Materials; Bridge Design; Can Foam Make Steel Stronger?; How Does Arch Curvature Affect Strength? How Do Different Foundations Stand Up to Earthquakes? Sr. Div: “Arrow” Dynamics; Measuring the Effect of Aerodynamic Design on Vehicular Drag.

What Doesn't Belong:
Junior Division aerodynamics/ hydrodynamics projects belong in Aerodynamics/Hydrodynamics. Engineering studies of soil stability during earthquakes belong in Earth & Atmospheric Sciences.
Grades 9-12 - S04 - Behavioral & Social Sciences
Studies of human psychology, behavior, development, linguistics and the effects of chemical or physical stress on these processes. Experimental or observational studies of attitudes, behaviors, or values of a society or groups within a society and of the influences of society on group behavior. Includes gender and diversity studies, anthropology, archaeology and sociology. Studies may focus on either normal or abnormal behavior.?Senior Division only: includes studies of cognition.

What Belongs:
A Study of the Senses in Stress Management; Racial Awareness in Infants; AIDS Awareness in Teens; The Effect of Authority Figures on Group Decision Making

What Doesn't Belong:
Animal behavior projects belong in Zoology or Mammalian Biology. Junior Division projects studying memory, learning, and sensory perception belong in Cognitive Science.
Grades 9-12 - S05 - Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology
Studies at the molecular, biochemical, or enzymatic levels in animals (including humans), plants and microorganisms, including yeast. Studies of biological molecules, e.g., DNA, RNA, proteins, fats, vitamins, nutrients.

What Belongs:
Lipooxygenase Influence on Lipofuscin Granule Formation in Bananas; Effects of P1 Precursors on Virus Growth; Isolation of Pre-mRNA Mutants in Saccharomyces cerevisiae; Determination of Ascorbic Acid Concentration in Orange Juice Using a Redox Reaction; Effects of Food Preparation on Vitamins.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the physical properties of biochemicals such as oxidation reduction reactions belong in Chemistry. Functions of major organ systems belong in Mammalian Biology or Zoology.
Grades 9-12 - S06 - Chemistry
Studies in which chemical properties of nonbiological organic and inorganic materials (excluding biochemistry) are observed. Some studies involving physical properties are appropriate, including phase changes, crystal structures and formation, intermolecular and intramolecular forces.

What Belongs:
Isolation, Purification, and Specific Rotation Determination of Ricinoleic Acid; Conductivity of Electrolytes; Does Water Purity Affect Surface Tension?
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Chemical studies of metabolic processes (e.g. fermentation and/or yeast), processes mediated by biochemical intermediates (e.g. enzymes), or biological organic molecules belong in Biochemistry. In the Junior Division, projects that deal with the characterization of chemical products in everyday life belong in Materials Science or Product Science (Physical).
Grades 9-12 - S08 - Computational Systems & Analysis:
Studies that focus primarily on the development or use of computational systems for applications in the biological, physical, or engineering sciences, such as analyzing big data, modeling and simulations, autonomous navigation, and bioinformatics.

What Belongs:
Neural Network Model to Predict Future Body Mass Index; Safecopter: Developing a Collision Avoidance System Based on an Array of Time-of-Flight 3D Cameras; Using Artificial Intelligence Systems for Autonomous Visual Comprehension and Handwriting Generation; Value of Splines in Modeling the Extragalactic Background Light; Assessing the Practicality of Asteroid Deflection Strategies Using Simulation; Mathematical Models of Cancer Development in the Human Digestive System.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects using computers or mathematics as a tool (without developing a program or a model) or that include actual experimentation to study a different subject belong in that category. For example, a computer-based analysis to identify obesity driver genes would belong here, but if the project also experimented with those genes it would then belong in Biochemistry/ Molecular Biology. Computer hardware projects belong in Electronics & Electromagnetics.
Grades 9-12 - S10 - Electronics & Electromagnetics:
Studies in geology, seismology, physical oceanography, marine geology, coastal Experimental or theoretical studies with electrical circuits, computer design, electro-optics, electromagnetic applications and antennas.

What Belongs:
Satellite Reception Without a Dish; The Gauss Rifle; Transmission of Information by Laser; Are Maglev Trains Practical?
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects that merely use electronics to study something else (e.g., hearing in birds) belong in another category (Zoology in this example).
Grades 9-12 - S11 - Environmental Engineering:
Projects which apply technologies such as recycling, reclamation, restoration, composting and bioremediation which could benefit the environment and/or the effects of pollution on the environment.

What Belongs:
Newspapers as Mulch; Oil Control; Water Hyacinth: Primary Water Treatment?; What Soil Conditions Best Control Soil Erosion While Assisting Growth?; Designing a New Home Sewer System.
{lbrl} What Doesn't Belong:
Projects that measure or survey environmental impacts without any mitigation of those impacts belong in Environmental Science or Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. Projects that study the mitigation of climate change through alternative energy production belong in Alternative Energy.
Grades 9-12 - S12 - Environmental Science:
Projects surveying, measuring, or studying the impact of natural and man-made changes on the environment. Examples include: floods, fires, biohazardous spills, acid rain, earthquakes, air pollution and water pollution.

What Belongs:
The Effects of Fires on Flora and Fauna; How Does Water Quality Affect the Abundance and Diversity of Micro-invertebrates; Bacteria Pollution in Our Beaches; An Analysis of Dissolved Oxygen and Density in Ballona Creek.

What Doesn't Belong:
Junior Division studies that measure or model climate change and its effects belong in Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. Studies of methods to mitigate pollution's effects on the environment, including climate, belong in Environmental Engineering. Studies performed under unrealistic or simulated conditions to examine the negative effects of substances or conditions on living things belong in Toxicology.
Grades 9-12 - S13 - Mammalian Biology:
Studies of growth and developmental biology, anatomy and physiology in all mammals, including humans. Studies of the behavior of all mammals in their natural habitats (or reproductions of them).

What Belongs:
Effect of Age on Aerobic Abilities; Peripheral Vision; Correlation of Strength with Gender; Effect of Vaccination on Antibody Development in Neonatal Bovines.Lung Capacity, Age, and Exercise; Crossed Hand-Eye Dominance

What Doesn't Belong:
Projects studying physiology of birds, insects, etc. belong in Zoology. Studies of the effect of chemicals on a physiological function may belong in Toxicology. Studies in which animals serve as a model for human learning or behavior belong in Cognitive Science (Jr) or Behavioral & Social Sciences (Sr).
Grades 9-12 - S15 - Mathematical Sciences:
Studies of mathematics (e.g., algebra, geometry, logic), and computer science (e.g., artificial intelligence, and the design, improvement, or optimization of algorithms, computer languages, operating systems, or software architecture.)

What Belongs:
Maximally Dispersed Points on a Sphere; Knot Mathematics; Mathematical Optimization of Multiple Precision Multiplication; Computerized Deductive Reasoning Using Bipartite Rules; Using Global Optimization to Separate Mixed Signals in a Noisy Environment; The Algebra and Geometry of Quasicategories; A Combinatorial Proof for the Geometric Series, Binomial Theorem, and the Square of a Polynomial with Tiling

What Doesn't Belong:
Computer programming projects belong in Computational Systems & Analysis. Projects using mathematics or computers as a tool to study a different subject, that develop an engineering solution, or that lead to a specific experiment, belong in that category.
Grades 9-12 - S16 - Microbiology (General):
Studies of genetics, growth and physiology of bacteria, fungi, protists, algae, or viruses. Includes surveys of bacterial contamination.?Senior Division Only:?includes projects described within the category Microbiology (Medical).

What Belongs:
Studies of Light Producing Bacteria; Enhancement of Algae Lipid Composition through the Manipulation of Temperature, Light, and Nutrient Levels; The Utilization of a Photobioreactor to Optimize the Growth Rate of Lipids in Microalga.

What Doesn't Belong:
Projects studying photosynthesis or fermentation belong in Biochemistry. Projects using bacteria as a tool to study another subject belong in that subject.
Grades 9-12 - S18 - Physics & Astronomy:
Studies of the physical properties of matter, light, acoustics, thermal properties, solar physics, astrophysics, orbital mechanics, observational astronomy, planetary science and astronomical surveys. Computer simulations of physical systems are appropriate in this category.

What Belongs:
Emissivity as a Function of Geometry; Do High Temperature Superconductors have a First Order Phase Transition?; Chaotic Pendulum; Photometric Detection of an Extrasolar Planetary Transit; Jupiter's Decametric Emission; Solar Activity and Geosynchronous Satellites.

What Doesn't Belong:
Electromagnetic propagation studies (e.g., antennas) belong in Electronics & Electromagnetics. Junior Division projects studying the characteristics of materials such as insulation properties belong in Materials Science.
Grades 9-12 - S19 - Plant Biology:
Studies of the genetics, growth, morphology, or physiology of plants. Studies of the effects of fertilizers on plants.

What Belongs:
Emissivity as a Function of Geometry; Do High Temperature Superconductors have a The Effects of Organic and Inorganic Fertilizers on Plant Growth; Effect of Rhizobium on Legume Plants (Pisum); Transpiration of Plants Under Different Light Sources.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies using plants for indication or remediation of environmental pollution belong in the appropriate environmental category. Studies of the negative effects of chemicals on plants belong in Toxicology.
Grades 9-12 - S22 - Toxicology:
Studies of the effects of the negative effects of chemicals, toxins, medicinal and nutritional factors, prescription drugs, natural remedies, food components (caffeine) and other potentially harmful factors (such as temperature, carbon dioxide, radiation) at the cellular or higher levels on plants and animals.

What Belongs:
Effect of Caffeine on Daphnia; Copper Toxicity of Marine Embryos; The Effects of Intermittent and Constant EMFs on Drosophila; The Effects of Petroleum Contaminated Water on Aquatic Plants.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the positive or beneficial effects of external factors such as nutritional components, medicines, vitamins, natural remedies, and fertilizers, belong in the relevant basic life science (e.g., Mammalian Biology, Zoology, Plant Biology, etc.) Studies of changes in actual ecosystems due to pollution belong in Environmental Science.
Grades 9-12 - S23 - Zoology:
Studies of growth and developmental biology, anatomy and physiology in animals other than mammals. Studies of the behavior of all animals (excluding mammals) in their natural habitats (or reproductions of them).

What Belongs:
Hot Fish, Cold Fish: Respiration in Goldfish; Hearing and the Dominance Hierarchy of Crickets; Effect of Gravity on Living Organisms; Invertebrates in Kelp Holdfasts; Auditory Stimuli in Interganglial Neurons of Acheta domesticus; Bird Responses to Boar Rootings.

What Doesn't Belong:
Studies of the positive or beneficial effects of external factors such as nutritional Studies of mammals belong in Mammalian Biology. Studies in which animals serve as a model for human behavior belong in Behavioral & Social Sciences.

WHAT TO EXPECT DURING THE JUDGING 

Elementary Division Categories (grades 4 - 5) 

Separate awards are given for each grade level, except for team projects, which are judged at the highest grade level represented in the project. 

Team projects, which are produced collaboratively with two or three students in any eight areas of science listed below, are judged along with individual projects in the same category. 

Students in grades 4 and 5 will set up their projects but will not participate in an interview with judges.

Junior Division (grades 6-8) and Senior Division (grades 9-12)

Students in the Junior Division (grades 6-8) and Senior Division (grades 9-12) will meet with the judges and should expect the following:  

  1. You should prepare an oral summary of the important points of your project that you can present in 60 seconds or less.  

  2. Following your summary, you may find it useful to prepare several short capsule descriptions of important aspects of your project. You know your project better than anyone, so you should have the best ideas of what is important, but you could prepare answers for such questions as "Where did you get the idea for this project?" "What is special or distinctive about your project?" "What is the next thing you would do with your results?" "What questions has your project now generated?" You might also explicitly prepare for the question you hope the judges will ask.  

  3. If yours is a team project, one person should act as the team spokesperson at the beginning and present the introductory oral summary. This summary should include the rationale for the project being a group, rather than an individual enterprise, and how each member contributed. Each member of the group should be fully knowledgeable about the project and be prepared to then discuss his/her part.  

  4. Be sure to have each judge initial the form provided during the Fair. This is your record of your project's judges. Special Award judges may also judge your project, however they will not need to initial the form. Special Award judges are identified by a special name badge.  

 

What Should You Expect The Judges To Do?  

  1. You should be interviewed by two to five different judges for your category who will spend about eight minutes discussing your project with you. It is difficult to space these interviews equally, so do not get discouraged if there is a long wait between judges. Do not worry about comparing the number of your judges with your neighbors. You, or they, may be getting Special/Recognition Awards interviews.  

  2. Many judges prefer to learn about your project by asking questions. Be prepared for them to interrupt your presentation. 

SIMSEF JUDGING CRITERIA 

Science Project Judging Criteria 

Engineering Project Judging Criteria 

Research Question (10 pts.) 

  1. Clear and focused purpose 

  1. Identifies contribution to field of study 

  1. Testable using scientific methods 

Research Problem (10 pts.) 

  1. Description of a practical need or problem to be solved 

  1. Definition of criteria for proposed solution 

  1. Explanation of constraints 

Design and Methodology (15 pts.) 

  1. Well-designed plan and data collection methods 

  1. Variables and controls defined, appropriate and complete 

Design and Methodology (15 pts.) 

  1. Exploration of alternatives to answer need or problem 

  1. Identification of a solution 

  1. Development of a prototype/model 

Execution: Data Collection, Analysis and Interpretation (20 pts.) 

  1. Systematic data collection and analysis 

  1. Reproducibility of results 

  1. Appropriate application of mathematical and statistical methods 

  1. Sufficient data collected to support interpretation and conclusions/claim 

Execution: Construction and Testing (20 pts.) 

  1. Prototype demonstrates intended design 

  1. Prototype has been tested in multiple conditions/trials 

  1. Prototype demonstrates engineering skill and completeness 

Creativity (20 pts.) 

  1. Project demonstrates significant creativity in one or more of the above criteria 

Creativity (20 pts.) 

  1. Project demonstrates significant creativity in one or more of the above criteria 

Presentation (35 pts.) 

Poster - 10 pts 

  1. Logical organization of material 

  1. Clarity of graphics and legends 

  1. Supporting documentation displayed (e.g. notebook/journal) 

Interview – 25 pts 

  1. Clear, concise, thoughtful response to questions 

  1. Understanding of basic science relevant to project 

  1. Understanding interpretation and limitations of results and conclusions 

  1. Degree of independence in conducting project 

  1. Recognition of potential impact in science, society and/or economics 

  1. Quality of ideas for further research 

  1. For team projects, contributions to and understanding of project by all members 

Presentation (35 pts.) 

Poster – 10 pts. 

  1. Logical organization of material 

  1. Clarity of graphics and legends 

  1. Supporting documentation displayed (e.g. notebook/journal) 

Interview – 25 pts. 

  1. Clear, concise, thoughtful response to questions 

  1. Understanding of basic science relevant to project 

  1. Understanding interpretation and limitations of results and conclusions 

  1. Degree of independence in conducting project 

  1. Recognition of potential impact in science, society and/or economics 

  1. Quality of ideas for further research 

  1. For team projects, contributions to and understanding of project by all members 

 

 

Please see the SIM Handbook 2018-2019  for any and all questions or clarifications.

SIM Handbook 2018-2019 FINAL UPDATED 12-5-18.pdf

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