By: Elizabeth Liebel

The Internet is shaping the way people study, obtain, and share scientific information; in true Google form, they have once again announced a ground breaking idea.

Google’s first ever online science fair was announced this week and plans to break all preconceived notions of traditional science fairs.  Welcoming students ages 13-18 from across the globe, this virtual science fair will change the way students have participated in science fairs of the past.

In partnership with CERN (A European Organization for Nuclear Research), The LEGO Group, National Geographic and Scientific American, Google’s online competition is open to full-time students with Internet access (either by themselves or in groups of two or three.)  Students now have the opportunity to share their ideas and compete with other students around the world.   Winners will receive amazing prizes such as scholarships, a trip to the Galapagos Islands with a National Geographic Explorer, or a five-day trip to CERN in Switzerland.

Entrants may submit projects in the following categories:

  • Physics
  • Biology
  • Food Science
  • Electricity & Electronics
  • Computer Science & Math
  • Earth & Environmental Studies
  • Chemistry
  • Plant & Wildlife (Flora and Fauna)
  • Energy & Space
  • Inventions & Innovation

Rather than demonstrating their research in a physical space, students can utilize all of Google’s tools to create a video presentation to be uploaded to Google sites and judged by some of the world’s most renowned science novices and Internet evangelists: Dr. Alice Bell, Vint Cerf, Mariette di Cristina, Rolf-Dieter Heuer, Dean Kamen, Kary Mullis, Marion Nestle, Peter Norvig, Tierney Thys, Thomas Taha Tassam Culhane, and Spencer Wells.

Beginning in May, these judges will begin reviewing the projects submitted by students who will then, if chosen as a finalist, be flown to Google Headquarters in July to compete in a final event.

To learn more about The Google Global Science Fair visit: http://www.google.com/events/sciencefair/index.html

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