Starting a Science Olympiad Team

Science Olympiad teams are assigned to a division based upon the grade level of the students:

  • Division A: (Grades K-6). Missouri does not sponsor a Division A regional or state tournament

  • Division B: (Grades 6-9)

  • Division C: (Grades 9-12)

Team Composition:

  • Division B: Open to students in grades 6-9. Of the 15 total students on a division B team, only 5 may be ninth graders. Division B schools are allowed to invite back up to five ninth graders if they have moved on to high school. If a division B team does invite their ninth graders back, these students are not allowed to participate on a division C team.

  • Division C: Open to students in grades 9-12. Of the 15 total students on a division C team, only 7 may be twelfth graders.

Detailed information regarding team composition can be found in the 2021-2022 Coaches Manual.

Registering Your Science Olympiad Team

Registration is REQUIRED to participate in ANY Science Olympiad tournaments or competitions!

Schools that did not sponsor a team for the 2020-2021 season may register a team using the new school discount. The regular price to register a team is $150.00. New teams may register and receive a 33% discount, reducing the registration fees to $100.00 per team.

Be sure to check with your regional tournament director as some regionals will allow schools to register more than one team. It is important to note that regardless of the number of teams that a school register, only one team per school is eligible for advancement to the state tournament.

Missouri Mentoring Program

Missouri is proud to offer a mentoring program for new Science Olympiad coaches!

Unsure where to start? How to organize your practices? Need help on setting a budget? Confused about where to get resources and how to use them? No worries, our New Coach Mentoring Program is here to help!

Regional Tournaments

The first competition that all Science Olympiad teams in Missouri must participate in is the regional tournament. Missouri is divided into eight regions and teams are assigned to a regional tournament based upon their location. Missouri does not allow schools to change regions due to competitive reasons.

Each regional tournament will invite a minimum of their top four teams to participate in the state tournament. Some regionals allow more than one team per school to register, however only one team per school may qualify to participate in the state tournament.

If a regional does not have four registered teams by the December cutoff date, the unused spots are assigned to the regionals with the highest numbers of registered teams.

Once a school pays their registration fee they are automatically registered for the appropriate regional tournament. Teams can expect to be contacted by the regional tournament director usually about a month before the competition with important tournament information.

A complete list of the regional competitions in Missouri along with links to each region's website can be found here.

Science Olympiad Event Topics

Science Olympiad features 23 different events that cover a wide variety of topics. Each year many of the events rotate out with new events taking their place. Events in Science Olympiad are aligned with the following five major categories:


Grades 6-9

Life, Personal, and Social Science

  • Anatomy and Physiology: Students learn about the nervous system, sensory organs, and endocrine system

  • Bio Process Lab: Students answer questions dealing with biology

  • Disease Detectives: Students use investigative skills to scientifically study diseases, injuries, and health in populations or groups of people

  • Green Generation: Participants solve problems and analyze data over aquatic, Air and Climate Change

  • Ornithology: Students are assessed on their knowledge of North American Birds

Earth and Space Science

  • Dynamic Planet: Teams compete in tasks related to hydrology

  • Meteorology: Teams display their understanding of meteorological principles dealing with climate

  • Road Scholar: Participants answer interpretive questions using state highway maps, topographic maps, and other types of images

  • Rocks and Minerals: Students answer questions regarding rocks and minerals

  • Solar System: Participants answer questions over the solar system

Physical Science and Chemistry

  • Crave the Wave: Participants complete tasks and answer questions about waves and wave motion

  • Crime Busters: Teams collect evidence and run a series of test to solve a crime

  • Food Science: Participants answer questions on food chemistry, with a focus on fermentation and pickling

  • Sounds of Music: Students design and play a musical instrument

  • Storm the Castle: Students design, construct and test a catapult device

Technology and Engineering

  • Bridges: Teams design and construct a balsa bridge meeting specified requirements to achieve the highest structural efficiency

  • Electric Wright Stuff: Prior to the tournament teams design, construct and test battery powered planes to achieve maximum time aloft

  • Mission Possible: Prior to the competition teams design, construct and test a Rube Goldberg type device

  • Mousetrap Vehicle: Teams design and construct a vehicle powered by a mousetrap that reaches a target as quickly as possible

Inquiry and Nature of Science

  • Codebusters: Teams cryptanalyze and decode encrypted messages using cryptanalysis techniques for various ciphers

  • Experimental Design: Tests the participant's ability to design, conduct, and report the findings of an experiment conducted on site

  • Ping-Pong Parachute: Prior to the competition teams design and build bottle rockets to launch a ping pong ball attached to a parachute

  • Write It, Do It: One participant describes and object, the other participant attempts to build the object using the written description

Grades 9-12

Life, Personal, and Social Science

  • Anatomy and Physiology: Students learn about the human nervous system, sensory organs, and endocrine system

  • Cell Biology: Participants answer questions over cell structure and function

  • Disease Detectives: Students use investigative skills to scientifically study diseases, injuries, and health in populations or groups of people

  • Green Generation: Students answer questions over aquatic systems, air and climate change

  • Ornithology: Students are assessed on their knowledge of North American Birds

Earth and Space Science

  • Astronomy: Teams demonstrate an understanding of the properties and evolution of stars and galaxies

  • Dynamic Planet: Teams compete in tasks related to physical and geological oceanography

  • Rocks and Minerals: Teams identify and classify rocks and minerals

  • Remote Sensing: Teams display their understanding of data sets obtained by remote sensing platforms

Physical Science and Chemistry

  • Chem Lab: Teams answer questions involving aqueous solutions and redox reactions

  • Environmental Chemistry: Participants complete tasks and answer questions regarding environmental chemistry

  • Forensics: Teams collect evidence and run a series of test to solve a crime

  • It's About Time: Teams construct a device to accurately measure specified time intervals

  • Trajectory: Teams construct and test a catapult device

  • WIFI Lab: Teams construct an antenna to transmit WIFI signals and answer questions over electromagnetic waves

Technology and Engineering

  • Bridges: Teams design and construct a balsa bridge meeting specified requirements to achieve the highest structural efficiency

  • Detector Building: Teams build a temperature sensing device to accurately measure and display temperatures of water samples

  • Gravity Vehicle: Teams design and build a vehicle and ramp that uses gravitational energy to power a vehicle to its target

  • Wright Stuff: Teams design and construct free flight rubber powered planes to achieve maximum time aloft

Inquiry and Nature of Science

  • Codebusters: Teams cryptanalyze and decode encrypted messages using cryptanalysis techniques for various ciphers

  • Experimental Design: Tests the participant's ability to design, conduct, and report the findings of an experiment conducted on site

  • Ping-Pong Parachute: Prior to the competition teams design and build bottle rockets to launch a ping pong ball attached to a parachute

  • Write It, Do It: One participant describes and object, the other participant attempts to build the object using the written description