Guidelines

The NJCO is open to all private and public high schools in and around the North Jersey area, including Pennsylvania, Staten Island and NYC.
  • Participation in any event is on a first-come-first-served basis.
  • Participation is limited to the first 40 teams who register.
  • Teams shall consist of from six (6) to twelve (12) students.

Registration

Teams who wish to participate in the NJCO must register supplying the following information in writing along with a fee of $150.00. (Make check out to NJIT-NJ Chemistry Olympics).

  • School Name
  • Name of Coach
  • School Address
  • School Phone Number
  • Home Phone Number
  • Fax number
  • Email Address (required)

Please note: A separate submission is required for each team being registered. An email address is required as all correspondence will be done via email.

Registration information and payment must be sent to:

Ms. Gayle Katz, NJ Chemistry Olympics
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Room 151 Tiernan Hall
161 Warren Street
Newark, NJ 07102-1982

Purchase orders will be accepted, however the fee must be paid in full no later than April 23, 2014.

Sign-Up for Events February 7 - March 1, 2014

Registration & Event Sign-Up Deadline:  February 28, 2014

Event Sign-up & Team Declaration

Schools may sign up for events and declare the make-up of their teams during the Sign-Up Period only.  Sign Up is by Google Form only.  Email sign up is not permitted. Please follow the directions on the Event Sign Up Procedures link. Sign-up for a particular time slot will be accepted on a first-come-first-served basis. If necessary, schools may sign-up for events as late as March 1 (the registration deadline), however, Event Sign-Up and Team Declaration must be submitted simultaneously.

Schools must declare the make-up of their teams when they select the events their team intends to participate in.

  • in the event that a student drops out from a team after the make-up of its team is declared, a school may fill the spot with another student.
  • no more than two replacements will be permitted; all replacements must be declared by the Paper Submission Deadline.
  • in the event that a team member is unable to attend the NJCO, his or her event partner may present their report on their behalf (only applies to events 1-4)

Sign-Up for Events February 7 - February 28, 2014

Multiple Teams

Schools may register up to two teams provided that:

  • of the two teams, the first must be comprised of at least 10 students, where as the second must be comprised of at least 6 students.
  • the make up of a team is declared upon signing up for events.
  •  students from one team are not permitted to switch to another after the school has declared the make-up of their teams.
  • in the event that a student drops out from a team after the make-up of its team is declared, a school may fill the spot with another student, provided that the replacement has not been previously declared on another team.
  • no more than two replacements will be permitted per team; all replacements must be declared by the Paper Submission Deadline.
  • if both teams are competing in events 6, 7, 8, 9 and/or 10 both teams must compete in the same time slot.

Participation as Individuals

  • Schools that are not able to form a team of six students may have students participate as individuals.
  • Individual participation is limited to two events by any group of students from any school.
  • Individual participation does not qualify for team scoring.
  • Students from schools sending 6 or more participants must participate as a team.

Event Participation

  • All teams are required to participate in a minimum of four events and a maximum of six to qualify for team scoring. 
  • Events are divided into three categories.  All teams are required to select at least one event from each category to qualify for team scoring.
  • Event selection must be declared by March 1. (See Event Sign-Up & Team Declaration)
  • Certain events require reports that must be received by the Paper Submission Deadline. Please refer to event descriptions for details.
  • Teams which declared an intention to participate in an event, but choose not to, will receive a 1 point deduction in their team score.
  • Certain events will be limited to the first eighteen teams to submit their declaration forms. Please refer to the event descriptions for details.

Number of Students in an Event

  • All events, except for the Chemical Nomenclature event,  requires at least two, but no more than three students to participate.
  • The Chemical Nomenclature event requires 3 students to participate.

Presentations (Events 1-4 only)

Only one event participant is required to present for an oral presentation (although it is recommended that those who prepared the report present together). 

Spectators

Schools may bring up to five spectators per team. Spectators must register during on-site registration. Schools with unregistered spectators will be disqualified. Spectators must pay a $10.00 (cash or school check) registration fee upon registration.

Competency Requirement

Judges reserve the right to reject submissions in the event that students have failed to demonstrate a reasonable level of competency and/or a high degree of mastery of the subject matter. A 1-point deduction will be accessed for each submission rejected. Rejections may be determined as late as during an oral presentation.

Use of Style Guide

All written reports and posters must adhere to the guidelines found in the ACS Style Guide, published by the American Chemical Society.  (Excerpts of the guide may be found on this website -- go to the Main Page)

Safety

Students participating in any of the laboratory activities are required to supply and wear goggles at all times during their event. Laboratory aprons and gloves are also recommended. It is expected that students will abide by laboratory safety rules and any directives given by a NJCO official. Disregard of safety rules and requirements will result in a ten point penalty in an event or possible disqualification from the event.

Safety Contract & Photo Release Form

Coaches will be required to submit a safety contract (go to Main Page) attesting to the fact that they have reviewed all relevant safety procedures with their students prior to coming to the NJCO.  All participants in the NJCO will be required to sign a photo release form granting permission to NJIT to have their photos taken.  The safety contract & photo release form must be submitted by the Paper Submission Deadline.

Photo Release form

Event Score

All events will be scored on a point system to determine the top three teams. In the event of a tie for any of the top three places, the event judges will rely on a tie breaking system they have agreed upon prior to judging.

Team Score

An overall team score will be determined by adding up the points earned during each event. 

  • First place in an event receives 15 team points, followed by 2nd receiving 14 points, and so on. 
  • Places 15 through last will earn one point for participating in the event.
  • Teams which declared an intention to participate in an event, but choose not to, after Event Sign Up Week will receive a 1 point deduction in their team score. 
  • The top three teams with the highest team score will be recognized. 
  • In the event of a tie for any of the three places, the team having earned the greater number of highest places will be declared the placing team, with the other teams following.

Awards and Gifts

  • All students will receive a certificate of participation.
  • The top three teams in each event will be recognized with a plaque and individual medals for award winning students.
  • The top three teams with the highest overall score will be recognized with a plaque.
  • Plaques presented for all events will become the property of the winning school.
  • The first place team will also be awarded the Platinum Crucible which is awarded to and possessed by the school, to be returned and defended during the next scheduled Chemistry Olympics.  The Platinum Crucible remains the property of NJIT.
  • Guests will not receive certificates, awards or gifts.
  • Gifts, including textbooks will be provided to the coach.
  • Coaches will receive 10 hours of PDH.

Requests for Clarifications

Schools may request clarification for any of the events.  All requests must be posted on the NJCO Wikispace.    Each school may ask up to two questions per event.  (2 questions per school; not 2 questions per team).  Replies will be made in within seven days.  Requests for clarification may not be emailed -- you must use the Wikispace in order maintain a transparent process.

NJCO Steering Committee Guidelines

  • The Steering Committee consists of up to six members:
    • Director (appointed by NJIT)
    • Associate Director (appointed by NJIT)
    • ACS-TA Representative (appointed by ACS-TA)
    • NJIT Representative (appointed by NJIT)
    • Two coaches (invited by the Director)
  • The committee's charge is to design the events of the NJCO and address any concerns that are identified through the survey given at the conclusion of the previous Olympics.
  • All information regarding individual events presented during the discussions of the Committee must be summarized in a public forum such as posting the information on the Internet.
  • Committee members, who also serve as a coach, may not have students from their school participate in the event they design.

NJCO Judging Guidelines

  • Three judges are appointed by the NJCO director for each event.  The head judge must be a faculty member of NJIT while the other judges may be members of ACS-TA and professionals from industry.  Coaches may not serve as judges.
  • The head judge is charged with working with the assistant judges in developing a rubric that details the specific criteria that will be used in judging his or her particular event.  This rubric must be made available to all schools by February 1.
  • The three judges work as a team, under the leadership of the head judge to review the submissions made for their event. The rubric must be used in this review process.
  • Once the review is complete, the head judge must submit a Score Report that ranks the top fifteen teams participating in the event from 1st to last place.

Check In

All teams will be required to check-in their teams the morning of the competition. 

  • Check-in will take place from 7:45 - 8:30 am in Tiernan Hall Lobby (1st Floor).
  • Check-in includes only of distribution of Team Information Packets. 
  • All team members, coaches and guests must wear the name tags provided during check-in.
  • In the event that a team arrives late, check-in materials will be left with the secretary in Room 151 Tiernan Hall.


Submission of Reports ("Paper Submission Deadline")

Some events  require the submission of multiple copies of reports.   Four complete copies of each report are required.  The Web Page Design event requires 4 CDs to be submitted.  All reports must be received by the Director of the NJCO no later than 4 pm, April 23, 2014.

ALL REPORTS & CDS MUST BE SUBMITTED TO NJIT IN A SINGLE PACKAGE

  • Reports & CDs must be delivered to:

    Gayle Katz, NJ Chemistry Olympics
    New Jersey Institute of Technology
    Room 151 Tiernan Hall
    161 Warren Street
    Newark, NJ 07102-1982

  • Faxed or e-mailed reports will not be accepted.
  • Reports received late (regardless of reason) will be rejected.
  • Extensions will not be granted.
  • To ensure deliver, it is recommended that reports be sent either by courier or hand delivered.
  • Safety contracts & Photo Release Forms are also due on this date.
  • A Report Submission Cover Sheet must be submitted with the Reports & CDs.

Primary Sources Required

All research papers must be built upon information acquired from a minimum of 3 PRIMARY SOURCES.  Although Internet sources may also be utilized in addition to the primary sources judges will be looking at how students select and use information gathered from primary sources.  Examples of primary sources include articles found in peer-reviewed professional journals such as Nature, Science and Journal of Chemical Education.  Peer-reviewed professional journals are available at post-secondary academic libraries.  Peer-reviewed journals that are accessed online are acceptable.  Magazines such as Discover, Science News, Popular Science and Scientific American, although informatory are not peer-reviewed professional journals. You are required to submit photocopies of the first three pages of each primary source used in your paper.

Papers Also Submitted to Turnitin.com

In addition to submitting 4 paper copies of each research paper, teams are also required to submit their papers to turnitin.com for review.  Turnitin.com is an online plagiarism detecting service which can be used to verify academic integrity.  Once a research paper has been submitted, teams will have immediate access to the evaluation generated by turnitin.com.  To avoid the appearance of plagiarism it is imperative that students properly cite all material incorporated into their reports.  The judges of the NJCO reserves the right to disqualify any team that submits plagiarized work.  There is no cost to teams for submitting NJCO research papers to Turnitin.com.  An access code will be required and will be furnished to all teams via email after March 1.  All submissions must be in the form of a single file in MS-Word format.

Team Identification

Each submission (research reports, web CDs, lab reports, etc) must include the following 4 items:

  • name of school

  • team A or B, designation, if applicable

  • names of students (clearly printed legibly)

  • name of coach

Disputes

All disputes are to be submitted to the NJCO Director in writing prior to the posting of the final team score. All decisions of the Director are considered final.

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