Students, Grades 5-12


If you are interested in qualifying for the Intel ISEF Fair, please make sure you ALSO register for the Buckeye Science and Engineering Fair (BSEF). Student registration for the BSEF is open between February 15th and March 1st and you can register here: BSEF Student Registration.


This event is open to all students in grades 5–12.

The registration fee in order to compete at the SEE is $35 per project.

Science and Engineering EXPO

University of Cincinnati

PO Box 210096

Cincinnati, OH 45221-0096 

To participate, your school must be located in the southwestern Ohio district, which encompasses the following counties:

  • Butler
  • Clermont
  • Hamilton
  • Preble
  • Warren

Students from other counties can find the location of their district science day on the Ohio Academy of Sciences Web site.

Students who attend virtual schools, are home schooled or whose schools do not hold science fairs may participate as well.

Required Materials

Listed below are the required project materials and forms that are required for your registration. Within STEM Wizard, there will be milestones splitting up these requirements into manageable tasks that you can check off as you go. All Project Materials and Required Forms will be uploaded on STEM Wizard.

Project Materials:

  • An abstract
  • A final report that includes the Research Plan plus the collected data, discussion
  • of the results and conclusions
  • A video for the judges that will be private only for judges to view
  • Answers to specific questions from the judging rubric

Required Forms

  • Checklist for Adult Sponsor (1)
  • Student Checklist and RP Instructions (1A)
  • Approval Form (1B)
  • OAS Consent and Release

Supplemental Forms

  • Regulated Research (1C)
  • Qualified Scientist (2)
  • Risk Assessment (3)
  • Human Participants (4)
  • Human Informed Consent
  • Vertebrate Animal (5A & 5B)
  • Potentially Hazardous Biological (6A)
  • Human and Vertebrate Tissue (6B)
  • Continuation (7)

Additional Resources

Listed here are extra resources to support you in the completion of your project and your registration:

  • Student Video Instructions: This video will offer important instructions and tips on how to create your project video presentation. 
  • Video Upload to YouTube Instructions: This video shares the process of uploading your video to YouTube. It also includes how to change the settings so that the video is only viewable by judges and not a public video. 
  • Student Video Presentation Example: Here is an example student presentation that provides an idea of how these videos can be prepared.
  • ISEF Forms Walkthrough: This video outlines the process of filling out your ISEF Forms. 
  • Intel ISEF Rules Wizard: This “wizard” asks a series of questions about your planned project and will provide a list of forms that you need to complete.

Categories and Subcategories

The Ohio Academy of Science has made a significant change to the number and type of project categories. These new changes are driven by ISEF considerations. The twenty-two categories listed below are those that will be used at SEE and State Science Day in 2021:

  • Animal Science
  • Behavioral and Social Sciences
  • Biochemistry
  • Biomedical and Health Sciences
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Cellular and Molecular Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Computational Biology and Bioinformatics
  • Earth and Environmental Science
  • Embedded Systems
  • Energy: Chemical
  • Energy: Physical
  • Engineering Mechanics
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Materials Science
  • Mathematics
  • Microbiology
  • Physics and Astronomy
  • Plant Sciences
  • Robotics and Intelligent Machines
  • Systems Software
  • Translational Medical Science 

Many projects could easily fit into more than one category, therefore we highly recommend that you review the entire listing of the new categories before choosing the category that most accurately describes your project. If the project could be in multiple categories, it is best to select the primary category of your project rather than “Other.”

Additional descriptions about the categories and subcategories that will be used at SEE and State Science Day in 2022.

Types of Science Fair Projects

There are two types of science fair projects that are acceptable for the Science and Engineering Expo. You can choose to perform a traditional scientific experiment, where you test a hypothesis through experimentation, or an engineering design project, where you design a solution to a problem and test the outcomes.

The Scientific Method

  1. State a question or problem
  2. Gather background information
  3. Formulate hypothesis; identify variables
  4. Design experiment, establish procedure(s)
  5. Test hypothesis by doing an experiment
  6. Analyze results & draw conclusions
  7. Present results

The Engineering Design Project

  1. Define a problem or need
  2. Gather background information
  3. Establish design statement or criteria
  4. Prepare preliminary designs
  5. Build and test a prototype(s)
  6. Verify, test & redesign as necessary
  7. Present results

For a copy to any of these documents, visit the Ohio Academy of Science website to download your documents.