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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions about Intel ISEF

When and Where is Intel ISEF?

These are the dates and locations for Intel ISEF until 2019:
Los Angeles, California, May 11-16, 2014
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, May 10-15, 2015
Phoenix, Arizona, May 8-13, 2016
Los Angeles, California, May 14-19, 2017
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, May 13-18, 2018
Phoenix, Arizona, May 12-17, 2019

Who participates at the Intel ISEF?


Students that compete in Intel ISEF emerge from a worldwide field of millions of science fair participants during the academic year. They move on to compete with students at more than 450 regional SSP and Intel ISEF affiliated science fairs around the world to win the right to attend the Intel ISEF. Each affiliated fair may send a pre-determined number of projects to the Intel ISEF (as factored by participation and high school population) to compete in 17 different categories.

What is an SSP-affiliated science fair?


An SSP-affiliated science fair is a research-based high school competition that is a member of the Intel ISEF network. These competitions exist in 46 states and the District of Columbia, and 70 countries, regions, and territories. To affiliate, science fairs agree to follow basic guidelines for fair operations and Intel ISEF rules governing student research, but are ultimately responsible for their own management. Fairs are conducted at local, regional, state and national levels. Find an SSP-affiliated fair in your area


What are Intel ISEF awards?


More than 600 individual and team awards are presented every year at the Intel ISEF. Each entry is judged at least four times with category awards given in first, second, third and fourth place. Awards are $3,000, $1,500, $1,000 and $500 respectively in each of the 17 categories. The top winner of the Intel ISEF receives the Gordon Moore Award, and $75,000, with the next top two winners each receiving a $50,000 award. Additional awards worth over $2 million are provided through the Intel ISEF Special Awards program, and include tuition scholarships, summer internships, scientific field trips, and laboratory equipment. They are provided by Intel and about 70 other corporate, professional, and government sponsors annually.


Who are the judges at the Intel ISEF?


Each year about 1,000 science, engineering, and industry professionals serve as judges for the Intel ISEF. All judges have a Ph.D. or equivalent degree and/or six years of relevant experience. Judges volunteer their time and pay their own travel and accommodation expenses. Learn more about becoming a judge.


What is the history of the Intel ISEF?


Society for Science & the Public, then Science Service, created the National Science Fair for high school winners of local and regional science fairs, first held in Philadelphia in 1950. In 1958, the fair became international for the first time when Japan, Canada, and Germany joined the competition. This annual fair has since grown into the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair with affiliated fairs in about 70 countries, regions, and territories. See a detailed history of the fair, with the number of affiliated fairs and finalists, as well as fair location, by year on our Intel ISEF By Year page.


Contact us for more information about the Intel ISEF.

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