Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair
The 82nd Annual Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair (PRSEF) will take place virtually in 2021. Judging will take place via video conferencing on Wed., March 24 and the Awards Ceremony will be livestreamed on Thurs., March 25. No students or judges will be on-site at Carnegie Science Center for PRSEF.
With the new virtual format, students will be able to enjoy additional programming on March 24 — including career conversations, interviews with STEM professionals, and engaging science videos —when they are not presenting to judges. Going virtual also makes PRSEF more accessible to schools and students who traditionally may not have been able to participate in the competition due to travel constraints.
Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair (PRSEF) invites middle and high school students to take on the challenge of designing, implementing, and communicating an original experiment while competing for cash prizes and scholarships. PRSEF is open to all students in grades 6-12 from the 21 counties within Western Pennsylvania and Garrett County, Maryland. The Science Fair has been a Pittsburgh tradition since 1940. It is also the third oldest science fair in the United States under the affiliation of Society for Science, which runs the Regeneron International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) and the Broadcom MASTERS middle school competition.
Each year, approximately 1,000 students from more than 100 schools participate in Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair. Students spend the 12 months leading up to the Science Fair developing and executing a project by utilizing the scientific method.
The Science Fair is supported by various foundations, universities, colleges, industries, corporations, and professional societies. See a complete listing of our sponsors here.
Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair is affiliated with the Regeneron International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) and sends four Senior Division students on an all-expenses paid trip to attend ISEF every year. ALL Senior Division students who participate in PRSEF may apply to attend Regeneron ISEF. See below for Regeneron ISEF application deadlines.
Additionally, PRSEF will nominate the first, second, and third place category award winners in the Junior and Intermediate Divisions to attend the Broadcom MASTERS Middle School Competition held annually in October in Washington, DC.
Important Dates and Deadlines
Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair Deadlines:
School Registration Opens
– Tues., Sept. 1, 2020
School Registration Deadline
– Fri., Nov. 13, 2020
Student Registration Deadline for projects requiring pre-approval
– Fri., Nov. 20, 2020
Note: All projects involving potentially hazardous biological agents, human subjects (including surveys), non-human vertebrate animals, or potentially hazardous chemicals, activities, and devices require pre-approval.
Student Registration Deadline
– Fri., Jan. 8, 2021
Student Registration Deadline for schools with science fairs
– Fri., Feb. 5, 2021
Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair
– Wed., March 24, 2021
Pittsburgh Regional Science & Engineering Fair Awards Ceremony
– Thurs., March 25, 2021
Regeneron ISEF Deadlines (9 – 12 grade only):
One copy of the student’s research paper and application must be mailed to:
Carnegie Science Center
Attn: PRSEF Director
One Allegheny Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15212
AND one copy of the student’s research paper must be emailed to PRSEF@CarnegieScienceCenter.org by Sun., Feb. 28, 2021.
ISEF preliminary application form submission deadline
– Sun., Feb. 28, 2021
Final paperwork must be submitted to ISEF by winners
– Mon., April 5, 2021
Student must attend ISEF prep session – April 2020
ISEF will be held on Sun., May 9 – Fri., May 14, 2021
Note: Student must be a PRSEF participant and complete the appropriate preliminary paperwork to apply for ISEF.
The Science Fair will facilitate workforce readiness and career awareness by providing an opportunity for students to:
- apply math and science content while igniting a desire for advanced learning in these areas
- assist schools in meeting State and National Standards
- communicate their research to an audience; and
- connect with professionals from various fields of science and engineering
The Science Fair will become the venue to connect bright and motivated young scientists with this region’s industry, academia, and professional organizations to promote economic development within Western Pennsylvania. Introducing students to the science and technology opportunities within our region will facilitate the cultivation and retention of a tremendous resource – our youth.
The Science Fair will ...
- facilitate partnerships between state and regional science competitions to better serve the students
- implement education programs to assist students and teachers in the Science Fair process
- foster community awareness of regional opportunities in science and technology; and
- partner students with industry and academia through mentorships, internships, and scholarships
Email questions or comments to PRSEF@CarnegieScienceCenter.org or call the Science Fair office at 412.237.1534.
STEM Center Founding Partners include Bayer, Chevron, Duquesne Light Co., Eaton, Kennametal Foundation, NOVA Chemicals, and PPG Foundation.