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Strategies for organizing successful science projects

The organization of a school science project consists of several areas. The student should research the topic of interest before assembling and displaying the science project. This should be a priority. The topic of interest is simply the subject that the student is fascinated by. With effective and concise research and strong references, students can possess an award winning science project. Research on the topic of interest should require discipline and thorough investigation. The student should be prepared for any unexpected questions from judges, educators or spectators. The main components of a school science project are:

  • title and author
  • hypothesis
  • materials
  • results
  • discussion
  • conclusions
  • references

Title and Author (Título y Autor)

In this section, the student should clearly state the title of the science project. The title should have concise keywords to provide enough information about the project. Some science committees provide the specific rules and regulations.

  • Avoid long titles.
  • Avoid words difficult to pronounce or read.
  • Avoid calligraphy font.
  • Use clear, large font.

It should also display the principal author or authors that contributed to the project.

  • The main author is always listed first followed by subsequent authors.
  • Avoid listing authors in alphabetical order unless otherwise stated.
  • In the scientific field, authors are listed in a hierarchy manner.

Hypothesis (Hipótesis)

This is the main idea of the science project. Very often, it correlates with the title of the science project. Actually, it is almost always stated in a form of a question.

A hypothesis is an educated guess. It is the main question that the student is asking about the topic of interest. Hence, the hypothesis is the scientific question whether it can be proved or not.

If research was done thoroughly, then the hypothesis question can easily be formed. Almost always, hypothesis emerges from researching about the topic of interest.

Materials (Materiales)

This section simply states the items used for the science project. It should clearly list the items necessary for another student to repeat the experiments. This provides the validity and precision of the experiments and the scientists. Experiments are sometimes repeated many times for accuracy and precision.

  • Be specific in listing the materials used.
  • Use the metric system when describing any type of measurement.
  • Use numerical or bullet form to list items.
  • Avoid long descriptions.

Results (Resultados)

Depending on the length of the experiments necessary to test the hypothesis, then results can be developed. This section simply states the findings according to the experiments conducted by the student. Many times in science, the experiments may or may not go as planned. And that is perfectly fine. But be sure to state the facts not opinions.

  • Avoid biased statements.
  • Be clear about the findings.
  • Avoid statements that start with ‘this didn’t work’.
  • Avoid blaming science partners (if any) if experiments failed. Failed experiments may not necessarily mean a negative.
  • Use concise words to describe events.
  • Use the past tense to describe experiments.
  • Use complete sentences to describe results.

Discussion (Discusión)

Although sometimes omitted, this section provides a brief description of the experiments performed. Students can elaborate by discussing any drawbacks in experiments. But avoid making personal statements.

Conclusions (Conclusión)

This part of the science project basically informs the reader about the summary of the experiments and hypothesis. Here, a clear statement is made. The student should state whether the hypothesis was proven or not, according to experiments performed.

  • Avoid unambiguous statements.
  • Be specific.
  • Avoid all positive statements.
  • Use short complete sentences.

References (Referencias)

This section entails the main works that students used to research and develop experiments. Students should follow MLA or APA formats, if necessary. In organizing science reports, five steps should be followed for a more comprehensive and concise project.

After all the dedication and hard work, students should be proud of such a great achievement. In putting effort into your own work, it requires discipline and self-motivation. These are wonderful traits any student should be proud of and provides a successful future for other science projects.

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.

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