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The American Statistical Association Project Competition Rules

Entry Rules and Evaluation Methods

  • Projects must be the original design and creation of the entrant(s).
  • Subject matter is the choice of the participant(s) or their classmates.
  • In submitting a project, students agree that the project may be displayed at the ASA's Joint Statistical Meetings, featured in its publications, and included on its web site.
  • All entries become the property of the ASA.
  • Only first-, second-, third-place, and honorable mention winners will be notified personally. The ASA web site will announce winners in August.
  • Students may work individually or in teams. The maximum number of students per team is four. For teams with members from different grade levels, the highest grade determines the entry category.
  • The online entry form must be submitted with the project or the project will be disqualified.
  • Papers must be saved as PDF files prior to submission
  • Statistical methods used in the project should not go beyond methods typically encountered in an introductory statistics course, including descriptive statistics, basic sampling methods, designed experiments (completely random designs and block designs), probability, confidence intervals or tests for a single parameter or the difference between two parameters, chi-square tests, simple or multiple linear regression, one- or two-factor ANOVA, simulation-based inference (randomization tests or bootstrapping), and other nonparametric methods. Any project that uses more advanced statistical techniques will be disqualified.
  • Students may receive adult guidance with their project. This extent of the guidance needs to be acknowledged in the paper. Papers will not be penalized for acknowledging that they asked for guidance.
  • Students are also expected to be scientific professionals. Confidentiality and anonymity of participants should be considered. Risks to participants (animals or humans) should be minimized. Unethical conduct may result in disqualification.


Teachers and statisticians, whose decisions are final, will judge the reports on the following:

Statistical Question: Valid statistical question that is clearly stated, focused, and interesting.

Data Collection: Evidence of direct data collection by students. Data were collected in an appropriate manner to answer the statistical question. Raw data are included.

Data Display: Includes appropriate, well-labeled, accurate displays (graphs and tables) of the data.

Data Analysis: Analysis of the data is accurate, thorough, and appropriate. Conditions are checked correctly for any inference procedures.

Conclusion: Conclusion includes a clear answer to the statistical question that is consistent with the data analysis and method of data collection.

Reflection on Process: Gives a good overall picture of the project&emdash;what went well and what didn't-and includes ideas for further study.

Overall Presentation: Attractive, well-organized, well-written project report.

Students and their advisors are encouraged to review the judging rubric at