Discovery Channel Young Scientist Challenge

The Discovery Channel Young Scientist Challenge (DCYSC) is an annual science and engineering research and exhibit competition for students in grade 5 through 8 created in 1999. Competitors must qualify for DCYSC by entering an International Science and Engineering (ISEF) affiliated science fair and being judged worthy to advance to DCYSC. After being nominated for DCYSC the research presentations are evaluated by DCYSC judges who select 40 finalists to compete in the finals. The finals are held each October in Washington DC and are comprised of two parts, research presentations in the National Academy of Science as in the qualifying rounds and demonstration of teamwork problem solving skills, by completing science phenomena related tasks. The grand prize is a $20,000 scholarship.


There were over 150 semi-finalists from all 50 states. California had 25 of them.

Since 2003 the themes for DCYSC have followed scientific curiosities and built activities around them.

In 2003, the activities were based on the 100 year anniversary of the first flight of the Wright Brothers, December 17, 1903.

In 2004, the activities were based on the 100 year anniversary of Einstein's Theory of Relativity.

In 2005, inspired by the events of Hurricane Katrina, the activities were about understanding natural disasters.


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