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AUSSEF Rules and Guidelines

Rules for entry to the Australian Science and Engineering Fair (AUSSEF)

Rules for entry to the Australian Science and Engineering Fair (AUSSEF)

  1. As a Regeneron ISEF-affiliated fair, a student must meet both of the following:
    1. be in Year 9-12
    2. not have reached age 20 on or before May 1 preceding the Regeneron ISEF.
  2. Entries must be uploaded to the AUSSEF website before 11:59:59pm Friday 17th November 2023. Any project uploaded after this time will have to submit an appeal that will be adjudicated by the AUSSEF Scientific Review Committee. To avoid problems with internet connections, students are advised to enter their projects well before the deadline.
  3. All submissions must include a report or design portfolio. A logbook detailing the progress of the project is also recommended. Videos or graphics showing how an innovative device works can also be submitted, if that will assist the judges. ICT programs can also be submitted – making sure operational and platform instructions are provided. Please ensure all submitted material do not include names of students, teachers or schools or other personal identifiers.
  4. To maintain the integrity of the judging process, students must ensure that every effort is made to make their entry anonymous – student names, school names, teacher names, and even their state or territory must not be made explicit. Even the submitted file names must be free of any personal identifiers. Title pages only need the title of the project and the year level of the student(s).
  5. All submitted work must be the work of the student(s). Assistance can be provided but this must be clearly documented in the Acknowledgements section.
  6. An Adult Sponsor must be nominated who can validate that the submission is the work of the student(s). The Adult Sponsor can be a teacher, parent, mentor or qualified scientist/engineer/mathematician. The Adult Sponsor should have had close contact with the student(s) throughout the timeline of the project.
  7. Team projects must have no more than three members. A team with members from different geographic regions in Australia may compete. Once a project has competed at AUSSEF, team membership cannot change and the project cannot be converted from an individual project to a team project or vice versa.
  8. The project may include no more than 12 months of continuous research, and experimentation or construction must have commenced on or after 1st January 2023. Background research and feasibility trials are permitted before that time.
  9. Longitudinal studies and projects which are continuations of a previous year’s work are permitted, but they must clearly document work performed before 2023. These projects which still be judged on the work performed on or after 1st January 2023.
  10. Projects that are demonstrations, ‘library’ research or informational projects, and/or ‘explanation’ models or kit building are not appropriate for AUSSEF.
  11. A research project may be part of a larger study performed by professional scientists, but the project submitted by the student(s) must be their own portion of the complete study.
  12. To be selected for ISEF, students over the age of 18 in May 2024, must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or else they will not be able to gain entry to the United States. According to US immigration policies, you are considered fully vaccinated if you travel more than 2 weeks after a 2-dose vaccine regime. You do not need to have received a booster. Students under 18 years of age in May 2024 are currently exempt from these regulations.
  13. Projects must adhere to local, state and Australian Federal laws, regulations and permitting conditions.
  14. The use of non-animal research methods and alternatives to animal research are strongly encouraged and must be explored before conducting a vertebrate animal project. Projects that involve vertebrate animals must meet the Animals in Schools requirements before any research can commence.
  15. Introduction or disposal of non-native, genetically-altered, and/or invasive species (e.g. insects, plants, invertebrates, vertebrates), pathogens, toxic chemicals or foreign substances into the environment is prohibited. It is recommended that students reference their local, state or national regulations and quarantine lists.

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Stuart Garth