NWA Science and Engineering Fair

NW Arkansas Regional Science and Engineering Fair

March 08, 2024
Arkansas Student Union Ballroom

The NWARSEF — affiliated with the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF)— includes these Arkansas counties:

Baxter, Benton, Boone, Carroll, Crawford, Franklin, Johnson, Logan, Madison, Marion, Newton, Scott, Searcy, Sebastian and Washington

For more information, please contact:
Shawn Bell
Director, NWARSEF

The mission of the Northwest Arkansas Regional Science and Engineering Fair of the University of Arkansas is to endorse STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) literacy and increase STEM career awareness in Northwest Arkansas for 5th-12th-grade students and teachers through inquiry and problem/project-based learning. The vision of the NWARSEF is to improve STEM education by encouraging students — future scientists, technologists, mathematicians and engineers — to explore STEM disciplines through their own research and problem/project-based learning, to apply the knowledge gained from their research, and to communicate their results.

Tentative 2023-24 Timeline

ISEF Rules and Forms Download

  • ISEF Rules and Forms
  • ISEF Forms only
  • Rules Wizard - The Rules Wizard has been designed as a first step to help you determine what forms and approvals are necessary before beginning a science fair project. Answer each of the 9 questions and a result page will provide a list of forms and information based on your answers; these forms and the accompanying rules should be reviewed closely with a teacher or mentor BEFORE experimentation begins.
  • xNWARSEF: Official 17 Category Abstract Form

August - September

  • Scientific Review Committee (SRC) / Institutional Review Board (IRB) form, according to regulations of the International Science and Engineering Fair. https://www.societyforscience.org/isef/
  • Research idea developed
    • Bibliography begun

September - November

  • PreNWARSEF 2023 Teacher/Sponsor Orientation on Friday, Oct. 6 from 8:30 a.m. to about 1 p.m. Registration is free, but you must register by Wednesday, Oct. 4:https://forms.gle/jXkXeyfek9EvH3JT7
  • NWA Science and Engineering Fair Affiliation Agreement and SRC/IRB due NOW! LATE after Nov. 1
  • Research plan developed and all required forms signed prior to experimentation
  • Before experimentation begins, a local SRC or IRB must review and approve projects involving human participants, vertebrate animals and potentially hazardous biological agents
    • Student Checklist (Form 1A) completed and signed
    • Research Plan
      1. Rationale: Include a brief synopsis of the background that supports your research problem and explain why this research is important and if applicable, explain any societal impact of your research.
      2. Research Question(s), Hypothesis (es), Engineering Goal(s), Expected Outcomes: How is this based on the rationale described above?
      3. Describe the following in detail:
        • Procedures: Detail all procedures and experimental design including methods for data collection. Describe only your project. Do not include work done by mentor or others.
        • Risk and Safety: Identify any potential risks and safety precautions needed.
        • Data Analysis: Describe the procedures you will use to analyze the data/results.
      4. Bibliography: list a minimum of 5 major references, more are preferred
    • Approval Form (Form 1B) completed and signed by
      1. Student prior to experimentation
      2. Parent prior to experimentation
      3. SRC and/or IRBfcomf prior to experimentation
  • Checklist for Adult Sponsor (Form 1)
    • Filled in, signed/dated by Adult Sponsor prior to experimentation
  • Access more information on Rules for All Projects
  • All other forms required of project signed and dated appropriately
  • NWA Science and Engineering Fair Affiliation Agreement and SRC/IRB forms completed.
  • Experimentation and data collection


December — February

  • Local science fair held at school or district by Feb. 21, 2024


  • Top four 5th-12th-grade winners in each division and category are registered with the NWARSEF by Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024. All projects with abstracts are submitted into the NWARSEF database. Registration link: https://forms.gle/hQ5zcMBPX9tZGtEc9
  • Individual School and Project registrations fees due by March 08, 2024. The Division and Student Project fees are waived for new schools participating this year. Payment link: https://commerce.cashnet.com/UARKCMSE
  • All student project paperwork must be COMPLETED and DUE at the SRC/IRB meeting on 2/24 prior to NWARSEF.
  • At least one teacher from each participating school in the NWARSEF MUST assist with the NWARSEF Scientific Review Committee (SRC) on Saturday, Feb. 24, prior to the NWARSEF Registration link: https://forms.gle/MS9MGQsxmaJKTNLBA


  • NWARSEF — Friday, March 08, at the University of Arkansas Student Union Ballroom
  • Schudule of Events
  • ISEF representatives will meet on Saturday, March 09, 2024

March 29 & 30, 2024

  • State SEF at University of Central Arkansas in Conway for NWARSEF 9th-12th-grade winners.
  • Top five 9th-12th-grade representatives from each category can register for the State Science and Engineering Fair (SEF). Registration deadline (online): Friday, March 15.

April - June

  • 6th-8th-grade Thermo Fisher Scientific Junior Innovators Challenge (formerly Broadcom Masters) winners submit paperwork to TFSJIC.

May 12-17

  • ISEF in Los Angeles with NWARSEF finalists