Judging Criteria

Scientific Method and Originality

Your exhibit should demonstrate clear scientific methodology: from the choice and formulation of a topic, through the design of experiments and collection of data, to accurate reporting and interpretation. Your presentation should reflect a good understanding of the scientific principles underlying your work. The judges will look for and reward evidence of originality and resourcefulness, uniqueness of approach and inventiveness in all aspects of the project.

Thoroughness and Effort

Your project should be complete and self-contained. It must reach a conclusion. You should plan your project: the scope of the topic, the scale of investigation, degree of detail etc., according to the time and resources you have available. Judging will balance the scope of a project and the thoroughness with which it has been carried out.

Technical and Graphical Skills

This aspect of your project should cover the construction of equipment and models, the care and presentation of living plants and animals*, the preparation and presentation of graphic materials etc., as appropriate. All should be carried out with thought and care, and as neatly as possible.


The exhibit should be designed to be visually attractive, informative and interesting. It should contain an appropriate balance of illustrative, graphical and textual information. It should not be overwhelming in content. Any more detailed information should be included in a separate report or log book.


*Any project involving animals (other than invertebrates) that affect or changes their normal routine, requires approval from the ethics committee of the New Zealand Association of Science Educators. For more information download Ethics Information of Students and Teachers or visit the New Zealand Association of Science Educators website.