Competition Guidelines

Research Guidelines

  • Missouri Junior Academy adheres to the rules, guidelines, and protocols promoted by the Intel ISEF.
  • All projects must follow the same protocols as your regional fair and must be certified by the appropriate committee (SRC or IRB) before experimentation begins.
  • If your project is subject to any specific certifications, a copy of the certifications MUST be brought to the state competition.  Presentations without these certifications from their regional science fair committee will not be eligible for competition.
  • The necessary certification forms are available through Society for Science and the Public.

Oral Presentation

  • Presentations are limited to twelve minutes with three minutes for questions from judges.  Presenters will not be allowed to go beyond the allotted time.
  • Presentations are subject to the following guidelines:

PowerPoint 2000 or newer.

Compatible with Windows XP or newer.

Presentation should be on a portable jump drive.

NO VIDEO CLIPS (mov. Quick Time, Real Player, etc.) will be allowed in the visual presentation.

Presentations will be checked in immediately following registration.  Please plan to arrive early to allow for all steps in the registration process.


Poster Presentation

High School Students who have won a district competition and will be competing at the state meeting are welcome to prepare a poster subject to the following guidelines.

  • The posters are to be set up prior to the high school paper presentations and remain up until after the High School Awards Ceremony on Friday Afternoon.
  • The poster session will be closed to all people except the judges during the judging period (1:00 PM – 3:00 PM).
  • The competition is limited to high school students only.
  • All poster displays must be free standing and can not exceed the following dimensions (including table):

30 inches (76 centimeters) deep

48 inches (122 centimeters) wide

108 inches (274 centimeters) high including table

Research Paper

To participate in the state competition, each qualifying student will submit a project abstract and project paper during the registration process.

  • The abstract is a brief summary of the project in less than 250 words. The submission should include the title, followed by authors and then the abstract itself.
    For example:
  • Student, Sally and Joseph Otherstudent.
    The currently literature contains relatively few critical analyses of color preferences in adolescents. With this study we hope…

  • The paper should be formatted in a style typical of a scientific research paper format (introduction, materials and methods, results, discussion, literature cited). Papers should be brief and concise. All content that is not the students should be cited using in-text citations and fully cited in the literature cited section. For further guidance on writing a scientific paper, you may contact the district director.


  • Recognition will be given to each of the top four competitors by the Junior Academy.  Competitors will be placed in appropriate categories and judged within their category.  The categories will vary from year to year depending on the papers submitted.  One cash prize per category is not mandatory.  Only high quality papers will likely be competitive.
  • Judging will be based on both technical merit and visual presentation of the research.
  • Any project using, Potentially Hazardous Biologicals, DNA, Humans or other Vertebrates must display the appropriately signed ISEF forms with the poster display.
  • Direct any questions regarding the poster session to Teresa Boman or Mary Kilmer