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NSTA Position Statement:
The National Science Teachers Association recognizes that many kinds of learning experiences, including science competitions, can contribute significantly to the education of students of science. With respect to science competitions, such as science fairs, science leagues, symposia, Olympiads, scholarship activities and talent searches, the Association takes the position that participation should be guided by the following principles:
- Student and staff participation in science competitions should be voluntary and open to all students.
- Emphasis should be placed on the learning experience rather than on the competition.
- Science competitions should supplement and enhance other educational experiences and be closely aligned or integrated with the curriculum.
- The emphasis should be on scientific process, content, and/or application.
- Projects and presentation should be the work of the student with proper credit to others for their contributions.
- Scientific competitions should foster partnerships between students, the school and the science community.
—Adopted by the Board of Directors