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History Fair Guide 2008

History Fair Guide 2008



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Published by Julie

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Published by: Julie on Jan 03, 2008
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Also check the OFFICIAL NHD WEBSITE: http://nhd.org/1
Beginning your ProjectFirst, you will want to pick out a topic that interests you and that is recentenough for you to easily find primary sources and perhaps a couple primary sourceinterviews. However, this topic should not be something that has happened in the last 10 years. A good time period is the 1900s, preferably. This year’s theme is “Conflict andCompromise.” With every conflict, there is often a compromise, even though it may not beapparent at first. A compromise can also mean a resolution. While you don’t necessarilyhave to cover both a conflict and a compromise in your project, be sure to try your best todo so. Take a look at the Links section to find out where you can go to see some sampletopics.Once you have your topic, select which category appeals to you and will work wellwith your topic. For example, if you have a topic where you can find numerous images,then you may want to go with an exhibit board or documentary. The categories this yearare historical paper, exhibit board, documentary, performance, and website. Allcategories have options for group except for historical paper.ResearchHistory Fair research includes both primary and secondary sources. A primarysource is a document, speech, or other sort of evidence written, created or otherwiseproduced during the time period of your topic. For example, newspapers from the timeperiod you are researching, books written by people who actually experienced the event,and interviews with people who experienced the event. If you are doing a project aboutthe Vietnam War, primary sources would include: interviews with Vietnam war veterans,books written by survivors, newspapers covering progress of the Vietnam war, etc. Asecondary source is an analysis of the event after the time period your topic takes placein. For example, a book detailing the events of the Vietnam War after it has take placeby a historian is a secondary source. Interviews can also be secondary sources, if you aretalking to an expert who did not experience the event themselves.You will be required to find several primary sources for your project. While it is notrequired to have a certain number, the more you can find, the better. Some places to goto look for primary sources are to public libraries. The UWF library has an extensivearchive of the New York Times, the Washington Post, etc. If you go to their library, you canalso access databases of journals and magazine articles on the UWF computers. Whenlooking for newspapers, try to look for specific dates mentioned in other sources. Thatway, looking through microfilm is much easier. The topic you are researching may havecourt cases associated with, or legislation. These will also be important primary sources.Some great sources online are Presidential libraries, the National Archives, and theLibrary of Congress.Secondary sources are also important. These may include documentaries, books,interviews, and magazine articles. The important thing to remember when distinguishingbetween a secondary source and a primary source is if it took place in the time period youare researching and whether it is a first-hand account. When researching online, be sureto use reliable websites, with .mil, .gov, .edu, in the URL. With other websites, use your own
Also check the OFFICIAL NHD WEBSITE: http://nhd.org/2
common sense to determine whether you think it is a reliable website. NO WIKIPEDIAALLOWED! While Wikipedia is a great website for looking up a random fact, it is not agreat website for scholarly research since anyone can edit it.Annotated BibliographyWhile you are doing your research, make sure to keep track of everything you areusing and record it in your bibliography. That way, you won’t have to spend hours siftingthrough a jumbled mass of books and papers citing sources. If you’re organized from thebeginning, then it is a lot easier to get things done. Keep everything in a large binder.Put your bibliography in the front and put your sources in after it with some kind of anorganizational system. I prefer putting them in alphabetical order – that way thebibliography acts like an index. You can also use a numbering system or whatever way isbest for you.The accepted citation formats for History Fair are MLA and Turabian. However, Irecommend using MLA format because it is simpler and more common. If you want to bean individual and use Turabian, that’s fine too. See the links section for furtherinformation. Primary sources and secondary sources need to be separated in yourbibliography. Although everyone should know this by now...remember to alphabetize!You will also need to prepare annotations for each source you have. Annotationsare simply a few sentences about the source. Be sure to spend time on them – some of the things you can include are how you used the source, what you learned from it, why you found it useful, and why you chose to group it as a primary or secondary source (generally for things that seem to go either way, not for all of them). For interviews, your annotationcan be rather lengthy. Recap what the person told you in the interview and how thisinterview is helpful to you.Specific Information
– In order to cite sources within the text, you can use parentheticals, footnotes, or endnotes. These do not go toward the total word count. A paper can be noless than 1,500 words and no more than 2,500 words. While images, charts, etc. arepermitted, these are not to be used in profusion.
– The overall NHD size requirement is 40inches wide, 30 inches deep, and 6 feet high. Often, studentswill make the center panel 36 inches wide and the heightabout 56 inches so that it is easier to read. There is a 500word limit that applies to all text that you write yourself using your own words. Citations and quotations do not count as partof the 500 student-generated words. While three-sidedboards are typical, some people choose to create circular orrotating exhibits. There are different size requirements forthese, see the NHD rule handbook. When getting a three-sidedboard, be sure they are no larger than specified. Some peoplechoose the wooden kind with additional inner panels whileothers go with a more simple foam board.
– Performances must not exceed 10 minutes in length. 5 minutesare allowed for setting up and an additional 5 are allowed for taking down.

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