ST Yau High School Science Award (Asia)


Selection Criteria


The Assessment Panels will evaluate the research reports with professionalism and scholarship. The following set of selection criteria will be rigorously applied:

1.  Relevance to subject matter

  • The scope of research covers all fields of the subject matter, which can be either fundamental theoretical research or explorations of technical problems. The research topic should have direct contribution or methodological contribution to the interpretation of problems on the subject category.

2.  Originality in the choice of subject for investigation and/or choice of techniques

  • Subjects for investigation could be either original problems or existing conjectures. Participating teams are expected to conduct adequate literature review on the background or originality of the problems. A problem known to the learned community in general, but unknown to the team, does not constitute originality.

3.  Creativity in problem solving and methodology

  • Successful projects are expected to either develop a new methodology or to synthesise existing techniques. Routine application of existing methodology may not be competitive.

4.  Rigour in scientific deliberation

  • Development of methodology and solutions are expected to demonstrate rigourous concepts and derivations.

5.  Potential impact to subject matter

  • A project will carry high merits if the results can induce other or further advance in the subject matter; or if the methodology has potential for application in wider or other applications.

6.  Thoroughness of literature review

7.  Scholarship and clarity of written report and oral presentation

  • Research reports are expected to be written in accordance with the academic norms, with an abstract in less than one page, review of the background problems and methodology, and citation of references. The reports must also make clear distinction between background materials and original contributions.
  • A good oral presentation should be able to demonstrate the background of the problem, key background materials, and above all, the team's original contributions. In the oral presentation, it is expected that every team member will speak on behalf of the team in an organised manner.

Assessment Process

Research projects will be subjected to initial screening, then anonymous referee evaluation, and finally oral defense.

There are three stages of assessment.

1.  First Stage : Initial Screening

  • All submitted research outlines will be initially screened by the respective Chair of Assessment Panel to determine whether they meet basic academic standards, especially on the selection criterion “Relevance to subject matter”.
  • Upon approval of YHSA(Asia) Regional Director, participating teams will be notified of their results of the initial screening. Teams that have passed the initial screening shall then prepare for their research reports for the second stage's assessment.

2.  Second Stage : Referee Assessment

  • Research reports will be sent to at least two (2) anonymous referees for assessment. The referees will apply the selection criteria to evaluate the reports.
    • Originality in the choice of subject for investigation and/or choice of techniques
    • Creativity in problem solving and methodology
    • Rigour in scientific deliberation
    • Potential impact to subject matter
    • Thoroughness of literature review
    • Scholarship and clarity of written report and oral presentation
  • Based on the referees’ assessment, and in consultation with the YHSA(Asia) Regional Director, the respective Chair of Assessment Panel will select up to ten (10) teams for each subject category to participate in the oral defense.

3.  Third Stage : Oral Defense

  • The Assessment Panels will adjudicate the oral defense. The oral defense will be conducted in English. Each team shall attend the oral defense in person and make an oral presentation of their research, followed by an inquiry before the Assessment Panel members. Team members who do not attend the oral defense in person will be disqualified from the competition.
  • The Assessment Panels will make recommendation for different levels of awards and may recommend fewer prizes to be awarded if they consider it appropriate. The recommended list of awardees will be submitted to the Regional Advisory Committee for final approval. Participants must abide by the decisions of the Regional Advisory Committee, which shall be final.
  • Gold and Silver Prize winning teams of YHSA(Asia) will be recommended to participate in the YHSA Finale to compete with other YHSA regional semi-finalists.