Writing science fair research paper may seem like a challenging task but it is not as difficult as it seems. Science fair research papers are written in the form format that you may use to write a science project report. If your project includes people, animals, regulated substances, or hazardous materials, you can attach an appendix that includes special activities you needed to do for your project. There may be some additional sections in your report like bibliographies and abstracts.
Sections to include in your science fair research paper
Before you start writing a paper, check with your teacher about the rules and guidelines of the school, which you need to follow in the process of your paper.
The table of contents of your paper should consist of the following:
- Abstract. It is a short overview of the project. Usually has one or two paragraphs. In no case, it should be longer than one page.
- Entry. In the entry, you need to offer hypothesis, question variables, and explanation of what made you begin your research as well as what you hope to achieve.
- Background research. The research you have conducted before you started writing a paper.
- A list of sources. This is a list of all sources you have used in your research as well as supplies you needed to conduct it.
- Experiments. Here, you need to describe in detail the method you used to gather your information or make observations. Make sure to explain all the details so that someone could repeat your experiment step-by-step. Insert chart, all drawings, graphs, and other important data.
- An analysis of the information and discussion. Here, you need to include all the measurements and data from your experiment along with charts, graphs, and drawings. Explain the results and offer a summary of what you discovered during your observations. Contrast the results with published information you found in your research. If you have too much information that can be put on several pages, include it in an appendix.
- Conclusion. Sum up all your results. Include only information that you have stated before in your paper.
- Suggestions for further research. Sometimes you may be asked to provide suggestions on how your project can be expanded in the future.
- Acknowledgments. This is a brief statement that contains names of people who have assisted you in your project. Here, you need to thank them for their contribution to your success.
- Bibliography. In this section, you need to include all the magazines, articles, books, and interviews that you used to conduct your research.
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Using a sample of a science fair research paper
Participating in the science fair is one of the most interesting things you can do at school. This is when you need to come up with an interesting science experiment that you’d like to conduct and then show it to your family and friends. A lot of students participate in such events so that you can go around during the fair and watch the experiments of other students.
One of the unpleasant parts of a science fair is the writing of a research project on your findings. This is the most significant section of your task. You will need to conduct a research, offer a hypothesis, examine it, and then show your results. The paper will contain your results and your hypothesis.
To learn how to write a science fair research paper, get a good sample to see what you need to include in your project. This kind of paper is not the same as others since you need to provide data in terms of what test you are applying and the findings you are getting. You will need to conduct an experiment and then offer your summary.
Places where you can find good samples of a science fair research paper include:
- How to guides
- Instructional websites
- Image files
How to guides and instructional sites
There are a lot of websites that offer you instructions on how to do various things. Usually, you can find a good sample of a paper on one of such sites where you can learn how to compose an effective project. You will be offered a lot of assistance and explanations on how to do it. Having the visual and the instructions, it is better for you to understand how to prepare a professional paper.
Image files are an amazing place to find samples of various papers. Try using a search engine to see what you can find. This way, you can find a good piece that you can read and use the format for your own paper.
You can really learn a lot from someone else’s project. Read through the paper a few times to get the best idea. Analyze it by dividing it in parts and find different pieces that will be included in your plan. Then you can use the data to compose your own paper. You may want to copy the headlines from the paper and insert them in your own document and then just complete them section by section.
Research process for a science fair background
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- You will need to conduct the following research process to get background information on your project:
- You will need to use 60 index cards.
- Compile a list of 20 questions about your subject and provide answers to every question from three different sources.
- Write every question on one side of your index cards. One question per card. In total, you should have 60 cards.
- On the back of every index card, write answers to your questions. Along with the answer, provide all the necessary information about the source.
- Sort the cards out by a question number.
- Continue working until you have almost equal amount of information on every question and you feel that the subject has been fully studied.
- Sort out your questions into the main points that you will use as part of your plan and sources.
Background research is important so that you know how to design your experiment and how to write a science fair research paper in a professional manner. You need to answer some questions to make a background research plan. These tips will help you:
- Define the keywords in the question for your project. Brainstorm additional concepts and keywords.
- Use various question words to produce research questions from your keywords.
- Add a list of mathematical equations and formulas if there are nay to do your research plan.
- Do a background research on the history of similar inventions and experiments.
- Connect with other people who have more experience.
Writing the research paper
Before you start writing, think about the best order to talk about the major sections of your report. The best way is to start with your science fair project questions so that the audience knows the purpose of your paper. After that, ask yourself what information the audience needs to learn first in order to understand the rest of your paper. Usually the organization looks as follows:
- A science fair project topic or question
- Define the important concepts, words, and equations that talk about your experiment
- Offer history of similar experiments
- Give answers to the questions of your background research
As you will need to include a bibliography in your paper, you will need to take notes. You may find it convenient to take notes using cards. You can use the method described above.
Footnoting and referencing sources
When writing a paper, you may want to include pictures, words, diagrams, or ideas from your sources. There’s nothing wrong in copying such information as long as you reference it with the citation. If the information you are using is a paragraph, a sentence, or a phrase then you should include it in quotation marks that will tell the audience who actually wrote this information.
Reference citation is one of the best ways to reference information you copy in your science fair project. It is very easy. All you need to do is include the last name of the author, the year of publication, and the page number if necessary in parentheses after the facts you copy. Make sure that the source of the citation item is listed in your bibliography.
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