General Questions

What is LRSEF?

The Louisville Regional Science and Engineering Fair is an annual science and engineering fair held in Louisville, Kentucky. Students in grades 6-12 from 52 Kentucky counties may enter the fair.

In addition to winning trophies, cash and other awards, top Junior winners are nominated to enter the national Broadcom MASTERS competition. Top Senior winners win a trip to compete in the International Science and Engineering Fair.

Project Questions

Why should I do a science and engineering fair project?

If you enjoy solving problems and creating hands-on experiments, you can work independently and create a good science fair project. Your ability to put it all together with a research paper, a display board illustrating your work and rehearsing a short talk about your work will be very rewarding. These experiences will help you learn about the world around you in a different way than the typical homework assignment in science or mathematics. You can also meet new friends AND win prizes!

Does my school have to host a fair for me to enter the Louisville Regional Science & Engineering Fair?

NO! You can enter LRSEF independently. Each school is allowed to enter five projects in each category. A school fair is only necessary to narrow down the number of projects if there are more than five in a category. If your school does host a fair, you need to do your best at that event so you will be selected to come to LRSEF.

How long do I need to complete a competitive science or engineering project?

Most well-thought-out projects take 6-8 weeks to allow enough time to plan the project, conduct experiments, collect data, chart progress and document results.

What are the categories?

LRSEF has 22 project categories including Plant and Animal Sciences, Astronomy, Engineering, Mathematics, Computer Science, medical and behavioral sciences. Your project must fit into one of the 21 categories. For more information, visit the Student Resources section of our website.

How do I come up with an idea?

Ideas come from many places; radio, magazines, and newspapers. The main thing is to find a topic area that YOU care about. If you are interested, you will do a much better job. Do not just take a random idea that is not really yours because it is difficult to work hard on something you do not love thinking about. Additional resources are available in the Student Resources section.

I have an idea, but don’t know how to start. What can I do?

Check out the websites we recommend and look at the sample project ideas. Talk about your idea with your friends and family. If you are still stuck, contact LRSEF with a specific question. We will reach out to you and help you get started. If you are tackling a difficult problem, we can put you in touch with a local mentor.

Why do I need to fill out forms?

All science research has protocols to follow, and the forms we ask you to complete have been developed to reflect what would be required in a true research project. Forms are also necessary for your safety and protection.

I do not have a teacher to assist me. Can someone help me?

Definitely! Contact us at info@lrsef.org with specific questions. We will respond and help guide you through the process. You may also reach out to adult neighbors or friends with an interest in STEM subjects to help you.

May I work with a friend?

You may create a team of up to three people, but your project design must require teamwork. When the judges come to interview your team, 16 percent of your score will be based on how well a team worked together and the need for partner(s). Do not choose to work with a friend just because you think it will be easier. Work with a friend because you share the same passions and you feel your project will do better with his or her partnership.

How do I register for LRSEF?

Check the Registration Information Sheet for details on which registration group you are in. To register and file your project with STEM Wizard, click on the Apply Now tab on our website or go to https://lrsef.stemwizard.com/. Your registration and all of your project information must be complete by the registration deadline.

Fair Day Questions

How does morning judging work?

Each project will be judged at least once, but may be judged 2 or 3 times as Special Awards judging will be judged concurrently. Morning judging decides the first, second and third place winners within each category.

Do I have to stay by my poster all morning?

We understand that you may have to step away (i.e. restroom break, etc…), please do not stay away too long. Leave a note or make sure students around your poster area or volunteer gallery host know you will return shortly.

How will I know when I can leave for lunch?

A volunteer gallery host will release students for lunch by area as category judging has been completed.

If I do not attend the award ceremony and win an award, can my school get it to me?

As long as a representative of your school stays, yes.

How does afternoon judging work?

Afternoon judging consists of Special Awards judging and Best of Fair judging. Over 50+ Special Awards are given out (some are cash prizes) during LRSEF.

What is not allowed at the fair?

Some projects involve items that are not allowed in the fair. Please review this document to make sure you do not bring anything that is prohibited.