Colorado State Science Fair, Inc.

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Colorado Science and Engineering Fair

Dear Parents of CSEF Finalists:

This page includes information that will help students who have been chosen by their regional science fair to attend the Colorado Science & Engineering Fair (before, during and after). The 2018 CSEF will be April 5 - 7, 2018 at the Lory Student Center on the Colorado State University campus in Fort Collins, CO. If you are helping your student with a project as an Adult Sponsor or Designated Supervisor, please visit the Forms, Rules & Guidelines page for details on what forms and/or reviews are required.

Pre-CSEF Activities:

  • CSEF Registration:
    • all students MUST register with the CSEF by March 10th
    • all team members of a team project MUST submit their OWN registration form
  • Finalist Verification Form:
    • this form is printed from the confirmation page that comes up after the student has registered
    • the student, a parent, the adult sponsor and the regional fair director must ALL sign off on this form
    • this form also acts as the permission slip for the student to participate in the CSEF
  • Abstract Submission:
    • each registered project MUST submit either an Individual Project Abstract form or a Team Project Abstract form by March 9th
    • students should print the abstract form that comes up AFTER submitting to the database and all team members must sign the abstract as well
    • KEEP the original and submit a copy to the regional fair director
  • Paperwork Submission:
    • students should submit their signed Finalist Verification Form, a signed copy of their Abstract and copies of all required Intel ISEF (or Middle School) forms to their regional fair director, not the CSEF
    • each regional science fair has a unique deadline for submitting their paperwork to the CSEF Director, please contact your Regional Fair Director for instructions
  • Registration Payment:
    • the registration fee (checks or cash only) is $40 per STUDENT (not per project) and must be received by CSEF by April 1st
    • checks must be made out to CSEF or Colorado Science and Engineering Fair
    • if the school or district or regional fair is paying for the student, please make sure they send the check to the CSEF (see Contact Info) before that deadline
  • Abstract Review:
    • per the CSEF policy on project review, the judging captains of each category in both divisions will begin reviewing the abstracts that are registered in their category after March 9th
    • if the judging captains feel that the project doesn't fit the registered category, they will suggest a new category
    • please note that the student has the final say in whether or not their project is moved to a new category
    • students can also review the abstracts of other students by accessing the Abstract Database
  • Project Review:
    • the CSEF Scientific Review Committee will review all projects submitted for competition to make sure the students have followed the rules and guidelines for pre-college research and have the appropriate prior approvals
    • if there is missing information or forms, the REGIONAL FAIR DIRECTOR, ADULT SPONSOR and TEACHER will be contacted for clarifications and completion of the paperwork
    • if you as the parent are not listed as the Adult Sponsor (Form 1), please work with the adult who did sign Form 1 to make corrections as that is their job
  • Tour Pre-Registration:
    • students may pre-register for up to 3 tickets for any of the tours and/or presentations that are organized for Friday, April 6th after the guest speaker
  • Volunteer Sign-Up:
    • CSEF happens only because there are hundreds of volunteers involved each year
    • parents are encouraged to sign-up for any number of our volunteer jobs - the biggest need is on Thursday, April 5th
    • please note that volunteers will receive a CSU parking permit for the day that they volunteer

CSEF Activities:

  • Parking at Colorado State University:
    • navigating the CSU campus can be confusing and parking can be even worse; please refer to the Finalist Handbook page 25 for parking instructions for each day of the competition
    • please note that the shuttle between the Equine Center and CSU's main campus will run beginning at 7 a.m. and ending at 6:30 p.m.
    • during the non-peak times (11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m.), only one shuttle will be running at a time
    • once you are on campus, it is best if you plan on staying on campus for the day
    • it is suggested that if you plan on visiting campus on Friday, that you visit the Parking Services Office in the Lake Street Parking Garage to purchase a daily permit ($12) that will allow you to park in pretty much any lot (NOT METERED) on campus
  • Finalist Check-in:
    • we will open check-in for students to pick up their registration packet and T-shirt as soon as the exhibit hall is ready, but no later than 9 a.m.
    • there will be a designated spot for students to line up to wait their turn
    • volunteers will be directing their questions to the student - please listen, but don't interrupt unless spoken to
  • Project Set-up:
    • all projects will be assigned a specific spot in the exhibit hall - please make sure they set up in the correct spot by matching the project number on the registration packet with the table hang tag
    • students should bring at minimum, their project display board, their research notebook (log book), their formal project research paper and their ORIGINAL ISEF (or Middle School) forms with them
    • all projects MUST be set up by 11 a.m.
    • project set-up instructions will be printed on the registration packet and in the Finalist Handbook pages 6 - 8 - PLEASE READ!!
  • Display & Safety Inspections:
    • all projects must go through a display & safety inspection by 11:30 a.m.
    • please make sure your student will pass by reviewing the guidelines ahead of time
    • they will need their Intel ISEF (or Middle School) forms in order to pass the inspection, so if the teacher has them, make sure the teacher is at the CSEF or gives them to the student before arriving at CSU
  • Official Photography:
    • all students must have their pictures taken with their projects as part of the set-up process by 11:30 a.m.
    • we use these photos on the CSEF web site and share the photos to special award organizations for their newsletters when asked
    • if you don't want us posting the photo, please decline on the Finalist Verification Form
  • Tour Ticket Pick-up:
    • tour/presentation tickets that have been pre-registered for can be picked up and paid for in Room 322 of the Lory Student Center from 8:30 - 11 a.m.
    • students can also register for tickets during this time in the same room, if they didn't pre-register
  • Judging:
    • between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., ONLY JUDGES will be allowed in the exhibit hall for reviewing projects without students, everyone else will be turned away
    • ONLY Finalists will be allowed in after 1:30 p.m.
    • students will be released by a CSEF official around 5 p.m.
    • there are two sets of judges who will be interviewing students - Grand Award Judges and Special Award Judges - and not all students within a category will be interviewed by the same total number of judges because Special Award Organizations are looking for very specific project criteria
  • ISEF Rules Review/Update:
    • for parents interested in learning more about the rules and guidelines that govern pre-college student research, there will be a session put on by the CSEF SRC in Room 312 of the Lory Student Center on Thursday from 2 - 2:30 p.m.
  • Guest Speaker:
    • the featured CSEF guest speaker key note will be held in the Lory Student Center Theater on Friday, April 6th at 9 a.m.
  • Tours/Presentations:
    • students registered for tours or presentations should plan on being at least 10 minutes early to the time printed on their ticket as some groups have to walk across campus to the featured lab
  • CSEF Award Ceremony:
    • the award ceremony will be held at the Timberline Church starting at 6 p.m.
    • please allow 2 1/2 to 3 hours for the ceremony - we are handing out almost 500 individual awards to the students
  • Public Viewing:
    • students are required to be at their projects to talk to the public on Saturday, April 7th from 9 to 11 a.m.
  • Pizza Party:
    • everyone is invited to partake in some pizza and students are eligible for door prizes before tearing down their project and heading home at 11 a.m.

Post-CSEF Activities:

  • Award Ceremony Photo Orders:
    • during the award ceremony, we will be taking pictures off stage of the winners and you can order a printed copy of the photo - order forms will be in the finalist registration packet
  • Claiming Special Awards:
    • some special awards require the student to send in information (such as a W-9) in order to process the payment - please help the student do this as soon as possible after the CSEF
  • Broadcom MASTERS Nominations:
    • for those middle school students who were nominated for further competition with their project, they must complete the online nomination (information packets are given to the student during the award ceremony) by early June
  • Intel ISEF Registration:
    • for those students chosen to compete in the Intel ISEF as representatives of the state of Colorado through CSEF, they MUST complete their online registration and finalist questionnaire by April 10th
  • CSEF Surveys:
    • we value you and your student's input into their experience at the CSEF and will have paper copies of the survey available in the finalist's registration packets or you will be able to complete the form online

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Last modified 12/13/17