I have a few questions about ISEF?
So I just won a trip to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (aka ISEF) and im super excited!! but i do have a few questions to those who have been there before:
1. How's the overall experience?
2. I heard the judges ask really tough questions. My project is not amazing and so I'm afraid of that. Is that true? Are the questions hard?
3. Are the projects/judges intimidating?
4. Any tips? Comments? Something you wanna share?
- 1 decade agoBest Answer
I DID NOT USE SPELL CHECK< SO BARE WITH ME>
first of all WOOT!!!! High Five!!
Im a vetern of ISEF lol, ive been every year so far that ive been old enough for my regional fair.
It is freakin awesome, Its just so unbeliveable to be in the presences of so many people like you with similar intrests that actualy understand what your talking about. Its extremely awesome. Its a week long, and sometimes it feels like youve been there for a month, and other times its like youve only been there for an hour lol. You will need to get some pins or buttons representing your state or town, becuase on the first night they have a pin swap usualy. You get to mingle with all the other students, and dont be shy!!! Dont be afriad to randomly start talking to someone! Dont be taken aback by some of the youger students too, there are some times 13 year olds there too. There are parties just for the students (the pinswap is one of them) and they usualy have a mocktail bar and music. You will want to bring extra clothes, when it was in Alburqurque it rained every single day lmao, and it was in the dry season!!!! it was so funny becuase we were ment to have dinner outside and we had awesome food, then it started to rain and we all ran inside, just imagine it, over 1500 students at least all running to the convention center with fajitas and lemonade!
Its not nerdfest as some people may think of it, its like an extrememly selective party of science minded teens. This is random, but last year at Atlanta one of my friends made a banna explode, so there are lots of random opertunities that you wouldnt get any other way. There is also a LOT of walking involved some times. You may want to bring a backpack to the judgeding that has your dress shoes and wear sneakers until then becuase at the end of the day your feet will HURT! Some of the judges are hard to understande becuase of thick accents. Dont be afraid to ask them to repeat them selves, chances are they are thinking the same thing about you.
The judging is pretty hard, becuase they expect more of you. Read up on the science behind your project. Memorize everything that is involved in your research. Use wikipedia to study about all the terms and random parts in your project. Look up anything that has happened recently about your project, for example last year i took my system of wireless electricity transmission and research i had conducted on different mediums through which to transmit it, so i read up on on MIT's witricity and my favorite scientist of all time, Nikola Tesla. You also want to know about what you DONT want them to ask a head of time. When this happens you need a plan of how to answer what you WANT them to know and the quickest way to change the subject as smoothly as possible. Also while your there go to the presentation they usualy have about communicating your research, its awesome, they teach you little tricks of the trade of speaking and hey usualy have it the day before the judgeing so YOU NEED TO GO!!!!!! Ive been doing this for A LONG TIME but i still go to that every single year.
No matter what your project is, its your project. you may not think its amazing like finding the cure for cancer or green energy, but there is a use for every single science. You need to remember that what you did is jusst as important as every one else's and remember, YOU ARE THE EXPERT OF YOUR OWN PROJECT< THE JUDGES ARENT!!! They may be experts in the same field, but they werent following you through every single step! Remember that!
Also, you'll be EXTREMELY NERVOUS THE FIRST ISEF JUDGING BUT DONT SHOW IT!!! You have the oppurtunity to go to more fairs beyond ISEF, judges wont pick someone that is scared to death!! Stay comfident even if you have no idea what it is your trying to answer.
The judges will seem intimidating, but dont let it bother you. Youre intemidationg to them!! You may be the person that replaces them in a few years!!! They are older, and are sometimes in aw of us, or we remind them of themselves when they were our age. As for the projects, remember this when you compare your board to others-- A GIANT BOARD DOES NOT MAKE AN AWESOME SCIENCE PROJECT< AND NEITHER DOES A TITLE IN PARRAGRAPH FORM!! ITS CALLED A SCIENCE FAIR AND ENGINEERING FAIR< NOT A LETS SEE HOW BIG WE CAN MAKE THIS LOOK THIS YEAR FAIR! ITS THE SCIENCE INVOLVED, DEFENTLY NOT THE MONEY!
I have seen boards that were regular cardboard and kinda ahem, crappy, do very very well, better than mister stuffy pants who has a LCD screen in his board. The board doesnt matter, its the KNOWLEDGE that is ON THE BOARD. You just need to remember that your are an expert with your work and to be friendly and you will do well.
also, this is very important:
NEVER UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE TELL A JUDGE WHEN THEY ASK YOU WHAT COLLEGE YOU ARE THINKING ABOUT! JUST SAY IM STILL LOOKING OR I HAVE A FEW THAT IM THINKING ABOUT BUT STILL NOT SURE OF!!!!!!!!
YOU COULD BE A POSSILBE RECIVER OF A NICE BIG SCCHOLOSource(s): Years of science fair geekdom experience lmao
- 4 years ago
Karl, definitely a 70s influence. They seem like a cool band. I just picked up their album. Anyway, good song. Not their best, but a good one. 1. Yes 2. Sort of, although they remind me a lot of My Morning Jacket, who's a current act. 3. Well, you got the album name already, but I'd say Alt/Folk Rock? I don't know, classifying bands never works out for me.
- Anonymous1 decade ago