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Dr. Samuel Hibben of Westinghouse conducting a lighting demonstration for the STS 1945 Finalists

Great Science Projects

A Student Science series on how to achieve excellence in independent research

To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science."

Albert Einstein and Leopold Infeld. The Evolution of Physics. London: Cambridge University Press, 1938.)

We all share what it takes to be a scientist: creative imagination. Conducting an independent research project gives us an opportunity to use creativity and imagination to investigate what science and mathematics can reveal about the world — and ourselves. Research may establish facts and reach new conclusions.

An independent research project is an experiment you do by yourself or with a partner, class or school. You or your team design, carry out and interpret the experiment on your own.

Doing research take time. And it’s hard work. That’s why a teacher, parent or expert can help. And whether you’re tackling your first project or just need a refresher, the following resources can help, too.

This series, Great Science Projects, will help you, step by step, toward the successful completion of an independent research project. It will help you pick a project. It will help you as you conduct your experiment. And it will help you present your findings. You should find this information useful whether you are preparing for a science fair, a classroom project or just experimenting on your own.

This catalog of resources draws from articles from Science News for Students . It also gathers information from other sites, maintained by other organizations, useful to anyone curious about conducting research. Wherever we link to another site, we provide a short description of what you’ll find there. These pages also include hints on how to find more information on your own, whether at your local library or through tailored searches on the Internet.

This series on Great Science Projects is intended to be a general guide. It is not specific to any of Society for Science and the Public (SSP) science competitions. However, we do link to other pages that are related to the three SSP competitions.  More information specific to the competitions can be found at the following links: Broadcom MASTERS, Intel ISEF, Regeneron STS.  

And if you have questions or have suggestions for this site, please do not hesitate to email us at

Best of luck on your quest!

Next: How to Think Like a Scientist

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