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June 5, 2016 | George Mason University ->SCIENCE FAIR


The purpose of the mini science fair is to allow middle and high school students to think creatively, conduct background research, and develop a proposal for a unique solution that can help address important problems that face the medical field. Through this process, students will be able to think like scientists and learn how to make existing technologies even better.

Register Your Team and Challenge Abstract HERE

Theme of the Mini Science Fair:

The theme for this first youth symposium is Global Health. This area is broad, but especially for the first conference, we want students to have room to explore their own interests and see how computational and engineering methods can be applied.

Examples of areas in the Global Health Category include:

Infectious Disease (malaria, ebola, tuberculosis, etc.)

List of well-known infectious diseases - www.health.ri.gov/diseases/infectious/

Genetic Disease (cancer, Huntington’s diseases, Parkinsons, etc.)

List of well-known genetic diseases - www.genome.gov/10001204

Combating World Hunger

Students can think about how computer science and engineering solutions can help address these diseases. The competition is not limited to areas mentioned above. Students can also explore solutions for better patient care for individuals with these diseases, or an easier way to learn about the symptoms and diagnosis for a disease.

Apart from prizes for the top 3 (more or less depending on funding for awards) project proposals, we can also have awards for the best use of computer science or the best use of an engineering solution.

Before the Symposium:

Students will be able to form teams to help brainstorm and think of ideas. A few weeks before the symposium, the team will submit a brief abstract of their proposal. The abstract submission will take place on the symposium website.

The Symposium organizer will have research scientists available to help guide the teams.

During the Symposium:

At the symposium, there will be a time when teams will give poster presentations to various visitors at the symposium (family and friends) and will also present their idea to judges. The judges will score and determine the top projects, who will receive an award at the closing ceremonies.

Presentation Details:

At the science fair, individuals or teams can present their project in a variety of ways. The different options include a trifold poster board, powerpoint presentation on a laptop, or even printed out images and notes as a supplement. Presenters are not required to have a trifold poster board, and can instead determine what presentation method is best for them. The symposium organizers will provide a table for each project at the science fair.

Judging Criteria:

I. Research Question (10 pts)
  clear and focused purpose
  identifies contribution to field of study
  testable using scientific methods
II. Design and Methodology (10 pts)
  well designed plan and data collection methods
III. Creativity (15 pts)
  well designed plan and data collection methods
  project demonstrates significant creativity in one or more of the above criteria
IV. Presentation (25 pts)
a. Interview (25 pts)
  clear, concise, thoughtful responses to questions
  understanding of basic science relevant to project
  recognition of potential impact in science, society and/or economics
  quality of ideas for further research
Total Points Possible: 60