Science Olympiad

About Science Olympiad

Science Olympiad is one of the premier science tournament organizations in the United States. It exposes
participants to many fields of science. A school can field up to 3 teams with 15 students per team covering
up to 23 events. Events cover a wide range of science topics and students compete in events with a
partner or two, receiving medals by event. Events fall into several categories – “knowledge” events that
require participants to study and take written tests, “build” events that require participants to build a
device and test it on the day of the tournament, “hybrid” events that include building a device & taking a
written test, and “chemistry” based lab events. Teams’ scores are determined by student scores in
individual events. Each student participates in 2-3 events out of available approximately 23 events
(number may vary from year to year).

Students from Grades 3 and 4 participate in Division A whereas students from Grade 6 participate in
Division B. Grade 5 students may participate in Division A or Division B but not both in the same
competition year. Teams start their competition year by participating in Regional tournament. VASO
holds multiple Regional tournaments for Division B and top teams from each Regional progress to the
next level of competition, State tournament. Up to top two teams from Virginia progress to National
tournament. Division A teams only participate in Regional tournament.


Interest meetings happen in September, and teams are formed in late September or early October.

Division A Regional tournament is typically held early November. Division B Regional tournament is
typically held early-mid February, State tournament in early April and National tournament in early-mid


Students express their interest in events to the coach who matches students with similar interest and
assigns events. Participants review the rule book published by Science Olympiad Organization and
prepare all topics covered under the event. Parents are responsible to mentor their own child and their
partner to prepare them for various tournaments by researching various topics under the assigned event,
finding material for them to study, and conducting quizzes.

More Information

Science Olympiad ( For general information about the program and the organization.
Science Olympiad Student Center ( Good place to start as participants prepare for their events.

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