The STANSW Young Scientist Awards is a major project of the Science Teachers’ Association of New South Wales (STANSW). It has been running since 1992 and is headed up by a 15-member committee and a STANSW Executive members representing all sectors of education.
The Young Scientist Committee is composed of primary teachers, secondary science, maths and technology teachers, industry leaders and a representative from the Australian Museum. As a STEM-focused project, one of our committee members is the Senior Vice President of the Institute of Industrial Arts Technology Education (IIATE) and another Young Scientist committee member is an Executive member of the Mathematical Association of NSW (MANSW).
For Kindergarten to Year 12 students, Young Scientist offers worthwhile incentives to carry out scientific investigations or creating an innovative device.
In 2016 the STANSW Young Scientist Awards were restructured into three major categories (i) Working Scientifically (ii) Working Technologically and (iii) Working Mathematically. The major awards in each of these categories are headed up by the respective professional teachers’ body who are collaborating together to promote STEM education in NSW schools.
These respective category awards are:
(i) STANSW Scientific Investigations (Sponsored by the Science Teachers’ Association of New South Wales Inc)
(ii) IIATE Innovation and Engineering Design Awards Year 7 – 12 (Sponsored by the Institute of Industrial Arts Technology Education) and the OshClub Inventions and Innovations Awards Year K-6 (Sponsored by OshClub
(iii) MANSW Working Mathematically Awards (Sponsored by the Mathematical Association of NSW Inc).
Within these categories we have a host of sponsored awards that reward a large spectrum of the Working Scientifically, Working Technologically and Working Mathematically skills outlined in the respective NSW syllabuses.
Thanks to Sebel Furniture, our Principal sponsor, with added support from major sponsors, the Intel Foundation, Sapphire Foundation and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, we sent our top seven Year 9-12 projects to the 2018 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in Pittsburgh (May 2018). The Broadcom Foundation is also sponsored a Year 7-8 student to attend the Broadcom MASTERS International program which ran in collaboration with ISEF in Pittsburgh (May 2018).
Our ISEF delegation in 2018 also included the first Rural Young Scientist delegation of 2 projects and the Rural Young Scientist Teacher awardee and chaperone.
The STANSW Young Scientist Committee are giving as much support to Science, Technology and Mathematics teachers as possible through professional development activities we organise and through resources, readily available on our website. To the best of our knowledge, we are the only science fair in the world who have their past winning projects accessible to all teachers, parents and students. There is no set formula for setting out a project, however, following the order of one or two of these projects is the best way to start. We also have a Young Scientist Youtube Channel with nearly 50 model and innovation projects on display. Showing a few of these is the best way of launching project-based learning in any classroom environment.
As a State Fair, the STANSW Young Scientist awards forwards the majority of winning entries to the national BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards for more chances of prizes.