We are so excited that you are interested in joining us for the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair.


Before you Begin!

Make sure to complete some of the following items BEFORE you begin registration.

1st Determine if you want to compete for awards and prizes or if you would like to exhibit only!

Competing Division

(Grades 6-8 Eligible)

Competing Divisions

High School - Students in grades 9-12

Middle School - Students in grades 6-8

Showcase Division

Students in grades 5-11

Showcase Division

(Grades 5-11 Eligible)

6th Check your Emails!

If you didn't catch your Regional STEM Fair ID Number during registration, you will receive a notification email with it listed.


Be sure to check your SPAM folders for our emails as we will let you know if your registration is missing anything up until the event!

Project Registration

2nd Make sure that you can enter the Fair and that your schedule is clear for the entire day of the Event!

Read the General Information and FAQ pages if you have some questions.


3rd Decide on your topic and develop your experiment or design.


Remember your registration needs to be completed PRIOR to your experimentation.


4th Use the Student Checklist and the Road map to Registration to help you prepare for registration.

Complete the necessary items in order to make registration easier.



Begin registration using the buttons below.

Make sure you take note of your Regional STEM Fair ID Number!

Your Regional STEM Fair ID Number will be used to identify your project and

MUST be on the back of your Display Board.

Competing Division

(Grades 9-12 Eligible)

7th Submit Additional Pieces of your Project!

Submit your required Project Video, and your optional Project PDF and Quad Chart using the buttons below.

Submit Project PDF

Submit Quad Chart

Submit Project Video

Display Info for Virtual STEM Fair

Project Presentation, 2-Minute Project Video, and Quad Chart

Should the 2023 STEM Fair be held in person, the requirements laid out below may change.


Project Presentation/Display Info. Students will have five minutes to give judges a presentation on their project (which can be made using PowerPoint or other presentation software, a tri-fold board, a Quad Chart, or some other presentation that involves the student making a live presentation to the judges), and the judges will have five minutes to ask questions of each student. Students will have the ability to share their screen. Once their allotted time elapses, students will be automatically removed from the breakout rooms.


Project PDF. For ISEF, presentations will be reduced to a single PDF document limited to no more than 12 pages. This will replace the traditional tri-fold board you would normally produce for a STEM Fair. All text should be easily readable when viewing the entire page at once. The smallest allowable font size of body text is 14-pt., and an 18-pt. font is recommended. Exception: You may use a smaller font size, down to 10 pt., for figure captions or photo credits. More instructions here. The Sacramento Regional STEM Fair recommends students complete this requirement prior to the Fair, but this document is not a requirement of the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair.


Project Video. Students will also be required to produce a project video, summarizing your project at a high level to be used primarily for the public display of projects. While judges at ISEF will be given access to all of the materials you submit, they will be using the video if they need to perform further review your project. ISEF has asked that the videos do not include in-depth information, but rather make a brief 2-minute high-level overview. As it is now a requirement of ISEF, the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair has decided to make it a requirement as well. Additional video requirements available here. Videos will be due ahead of the Fair.


Quad Chart. A “quad chart” is a single page divided into four quadrants providing a high-level summary of the project. It is intended to be more visual than detailed to quickly introduce your judges to what is important about your project. The chart is broken up into four important sections: Research Question/ Engineering Objectives, Methodology/Project Design, Data Analysis & Results, Interpretation & Conclusions. Learn more here. The Sacramento Regional STEM Fair recommends students complete this requirement prior to the Fair, but this document is not a requirement of the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair.

Submit Project PDF

Submit Project Video

Submit Quad Chart

Helpful Websites


Sites to Help with Getting Started

1. Sparticl - A new web and mobile service for teens that collects the best internet resources in STEM.  (www.sparticl.org)


Sites to Help with Research

2. The National Science Digital Library - An online library for those interested in education and research in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. (www.nsdl.org)


Fun Sites

3. Code.org - This website has helpful tutorials on the basis of computer science, coding and programming. It even lets you learn coding with simple building blocks while playing your favorite games like "Angry Birds"! (www.Code.org)


4. Science News for Students! Pretty self-explanatory, but this news site can help you see what real world problem professional scientists and engineers are tackling - maybe you have a better solution? (Student.societyforscience.org/sciencenews-students)

Category Selection


Judged Categories:

The categories listed below are those that will be used at the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair. Many projects could easily fit into more than one category. We highly recommend that you review the entire listing of the categories before choosing a category that most accurately describes your project. Category judges are experts in their assigned field. These categories are judged based on either a Scientific Process or Engineering Design Process rubric. Please see below for information regarding your specific category:


Note: Students are able to change their selected category up until 2 weeks prior to the scheduled STEM Fair. Students are NOT able to change categories on-site.

You can also view the ISEF Categories here.


Remember: Once you have your idea, please ensure you will be following the Rules & Guidelines.  Be sure to read the Student Handbook for help with the Scientific Method! Begin the electronic registration, using the Registration Guide to help you.

  • Behavioral and Social Sciences -
    • The science or study of the thought processes and behavior of humans and other animals in their interactions with the environment studied through observational and experimental methods.
  • Biology & Health Sciences – includes Animal, Cellular & Molecular Biology, Microbiology, Plant Sciences, Health Sciences and Transitional Medical Sciences:
    • Focuses on human or animal body systems or overall health.


  • Chemistry – includes Biochemistry, Chemistry,  Chemical Energy and Pharmacology:
    • Studies that explore the identification of the substances of which matter is composed; the investigation of their properties and the ways in which they interact, combine and change; and the use of these processes to form new substances.
  • Sustainable Technology – includes Biomedical Engineering, Physical Energy, Environmental Engineering, and Green Chemistry:
    • Focuses on sustainable or green materials or products.


  • Applied Engineering – includes Engineering Mechanics, Materials Science, Robotics and Intelligent Machines:
    • Studies that focus on engineering that involves movement or structure.  The movement can be by the apparatus or the movement can affect the apparatus.
  • Computer Software & Technology - includes Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Embedded Systems and Systems Software:
    • The practical approach to computation and its applications.
  • Physical Sciences & Math – includes Earth and Environmental Sciences, Mathematics and Physics & Astronomy:
    • Focuses on the science of matter, energy, mathematical functions and applied mathematics.


Scientific Process Categories:

Engineering Design Process Categories:

Interview Tips


Remember: You will begin with a short 2-3 minute presentation about your project BEFORE the judges ask you any questions. Here are some tips:


  • Practice does make perfect when it comes to speeches! You ARE allowed note cards to help you remember details and numbers, but we know that you will know your project better than that!
  • Start with the BIG, GENERAL IDEA or QUESTION that you began with - everything has a beginning.
  • Connect the big general question or idea to your research topic.
  • Provide a brief overview of highlights, like a movie trailer.
  • Excite your audience about your project!
  • Used sparingly, humor, charm, and eye contact may help you connect with your judges.
  • Communicate in a natural manner, not rushed, perhaps just a bit slower than usual.
  • Draw from what you know by heart — so that it doesn’t sound overly “memorized.”
  • Place your project into context - how does it affect the real world?
  • Wrap up and let your judges know you would be happy to answer questions and always remember to say thank you!



Please dress your best, there will be pictures taken!

Business casual attire is suggested.

Interview Judging Criteria


Project Understanding/Knowledge

  • Clearly explains the purpose or problem of the project
  • Explains the basic underlying concept(s)
  • Answers questions knowledgeably
  • Clearly communicates information about the project
  • Maintains a logical train of thought when describing or explaining aspects of the project
  • Understands the concepts of variables and controls
  • Logically draws a conclusion, based upon results
  • Acknowledges and describes any assistance from others
  • Provides evidence that any assistance is within reasonable limits
  • Presents project in a clear, understandable fashion
  • Has an acceptable project format with all sections completed
  • Follows a standard format for citation, including endnotes and footnotes (i.e. APA or MLA)
  • Provides appropriate drawings, photographs and models to describe the project, attracts and holds attention




  1. Science
  • The hypothesis is clearly stated and the student has a systematic plan for testing the hypothesis (methods)
  • The project shows depth of study, effort, and understanding of theory or facts
  • Project exhibits orderly recording and analysis of data
  • Sampling techniques and data collection are appropriate to the problem
  • Scientific procedures are appropriate and organized
  • Conclusions formulated are logical, based on the data collected and relevant to hypothesis


- OR -


2. Engineering

  • The project has clear objective relevant to needs of potential user
  • Product or process has been tested
  • Product or process is both workable and feasible economically and ecologically
  • Project exhibits orderly recording and analysis of data
  • Testing procedures are appropriate and organized
  • Conclusions are logical and based on the data collected
  • Creativity/Complexity/Understanding
  • Selects a unique or creative topic
  • Scientific literature has been searched
  • Demonstrates creativity and complexity in project design
  • Demonstrates understanding of the topic by:
    • providing rational for data and conclusions
    • suggesting future extensions/research

Project Interview Tips

Suggested Project Timeline

Awards Guide


Grand Prize Awards

Three Grand Prize Awards are given to the most competitive Category Award winner projects in the High School Division. Three Grand Prize winners will be selected to take an all-expenses-paid trip to advance to compete in the Regeneron International Science & Engineering Fair to be held in May. Check out where the ISEF will be hosted this year at: www.societyforscience.org/isef/


Category Awards
Only projects submitted in the Competition Division will be awarded. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded in each of seven categories in the High School Division. First, second, third, fourth and fifth place prizes will be awarded in each of seven categories in the Middle School Division.


 All projects are consolidated into 7 eligible STEM areas for the category awards that include:

  • Applied Engineering
  • Behavioral & Social Sciences
  • Biology & Health Sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Software & Technology
  • Physical Sciences & Math
  • Sustainable Technology


California State Science Fair Awards
First place winners in each category in the High School & Middle School Divisions will qualify to participate in the California State Science Fair. Second place winners in each category in the High School and Middle School Division will be selected as alternates for the California State Science Fair.

*Note: Students from Butte, San Joaquin, and Solano counties are NOT eligible to advance to the California State Science Fair through Sacramento Regional STEM Fair.

Broadcom MASTERS Awards
Middle School Competition Division award recipients will be nominated to participate in the Broadcom MASTERS (Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars) competition dependent upon Broadcom's parameters.

Participation Awards
All participants in the Fair receive a certificate of participation and a commemorative pin. Other items and mementos may be handed out as well.


Special Awards
A number of individuals, companies and organizations provide special awards for projects that meet specific criteria. Last year, over 30 special awards were given out. To see a list of our typical Special Award Sponsors, click here.

Pin Design Contest

How to Enter

Do you consider yourself somewhat of an artist? If so, we want you to help us design our 2023 STEM Fair pin! Each year, the NorCal STEM Education Foundation provides pins to participants at the Sacramento Regional STEM Fair to commemorate the event. These pins travel with the winners who go on to compete in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair and are traded among competitors from all over the world! Imagine YOUR design traveling to Europe, Asia, even Australia!


The contestants for the Pin Design Competition will be featured virtually at the 2023 Sacramento Regional STEM Fair and the winner will be named at the Awards Ceremony.


Rules to Enter
All designs should be scalable (submitted in EPS format) and visually appealing when reduced to 1 ½ x 1 ½ inches. Designs will be displayed in color in two sizes for voting. Designs will be displayed on one side of one 8 ½ by 11-inch piece of paper. Designs will be shown in a print area of 4x6 and a pin preview thumbnail of 1 ½ by 1 ½ inches. Winning pins will be re-designed in the submitted image's likeness and manufactured no larger than 1 ½ x 1 ½ inches. Pin designs should state "2023" and "Sacramento Regional STEM Fair."  The chosen pin is subject to change to reflect the name of the 2023 Fair.


Individual submissions only. Contest is limited to students in grades 5-12 that reside in the NorCal STEM Education Foundation's service area.


Rules & Regulations
For a detailed look at all rules and regulations that apply for the Pin Design Contest: look here!


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P: (916) 441.3150

F: (916) 442.4182


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The mission of the NorCal STEM Education Foundation is to inspire and engage students to become interested in pursuing scientific, technological, engineering, and mathematical (STEM) degrees and careers.

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