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National Science Bowl — Middle School

Photo of a group of students and adults standing on a stage. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu and First Lady Michelle Obama are standing among the students.

Photo of a small, indoor model car racetrack. People are kneeling around the track as they watch a race that is in progress.

The Department of Energy's Office of Science sponsors the National Science Bowl® competition. This fun, fast-paced academic tournament tests the brainpower of middle school student teams on science and math topics. It is well recognized that the middle school years are the most productive time to attract students to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) subjects. The National Science Bowl provides an opportunity for students to develop STEM skills in a non-classroom setting.

What is the Science Bowl?

This academic tournament challenges middle school students' knowledge of science. Student teams are questioned on life science, math, general science, physical science, and earth science.

Teams consist of up to five students and a teacher/coach. Four students participate on the team during each period of the competition, and one student serves as an alternate who can substitute for another teammate at halftime. See the Science Bowl rules for more general information.

Regional Competitions

The path to the National Science Bowl competition starts at one of 38 regional sites throughout the United States. To register, please visit the National Science Bowl® competition website to find the closest event to you — there will be a link to start the registration process. Regional competitions typically take place between January and February; the Colorado Regional Science Bowl is scheduled for January 28, 2012. The winning team of each regional competition advances to the National Science Bowl competition in Washington, D.C.

Note: Colorado does not offer a regional middle school competition.

National Competition

Middle School students participate in two competitions at the National Science Bowl: 1) the academic math and science competition, and 2) a model car competition. The model car competition, managed by NREL, challenges students to design, build, and race model cars.

For questions about the Science Bowl, contact the Workforce Development and Education Programs staff.