Challenge Video Tips

Wondering what it takes to make a winning video?  Get the scoop straight from past Top Young Scientists here.

Tip #1:  Be passionate about your topic

You should choose a problem you are enthusiastic about solving, come up with a solution, and communicate your ideas. Make sure to show your excitement in your entry video!

Tip #2:  Plan ahead

Start by writing a script and getting all of your ideas down on paper.  Storyboard your different scenes.  Check out the YSC storyboard to stay organized.

Tip #3:  Research, research, research!

Don’t underestimate the power of researching! It’s best if you know your topic backwards and forwards before you even begin the video. This also means looking at past entries from finalists and learning what makes a great presentation.

Tip #4:  Be innovative

The Young Scientist Challenge is looking for kids who can think outside the box. If you can make the judges think, “Wow, I didn't think of that!”, you're off to a good start. Don't be afraid to go out on a limb with something new.

Tip #5:  Communicate clearly

One of the goals of the Young Scientist Challenge is to find a great science communicator. So, state your message clearly and efficiently in your video (don’t be afraid to make changes). At the finalist stage, make sure to practice being interviewed extensively.

Tip #6:  Capture your audience's attention

Music sounds nice, and people like looking at pictures! Using graphics and animations makes it easier to explain science concepts, and they just look cool. Show off your creative side – just be sure not to use any copyrighted material.

Tip #7:  Keep it simple

You have a 2 minute limit.  It is best to take one idea and explain it several different ways than to introduce several different ideas in such a short amount of time.

Tip #8:  Show your friends, family, and teachers

Have your friends, family and teachers watch your video before you submit it. They often have advice and ideas to help you improve. You can also get constructive criticism from a different point of view.

Tip # 9:  Follow the checklist

Make sure you follow all the rules and guidelines. Is your video between 1 and 2 minutes? Is your file size too big?

Tip #10:  Have fun!

No, this is nothing new, but it is always important to have fun! Even entering the competition is a great life experience.