Binders

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Binders are a key tool for several study and lab events of Science Olympiad. Competitors generally hole-punch factsheets or notes in the binder.

Rules

The following rules generally apply for events that allow the use of binders.

  • All papers must be secured in the binder, and typically must be hole-punched. Event supervisors may shake the binder or open it to inspect the binder.
  • The binder may not be used to hide a device (phones are usually taken away).
  • Many events and competitions limit the number of binders per team to one, but some allow one binder per competitor.
  • Competitors cannot look at other team's binders.

Competition Tips

Some events, such as Invasive Species, Optics, Herpetology, and Rocks and Minerals generally require a larger binder due to the amount of information that competitors will typically need to bring to be competitive. Build events typically do not need binders. For some events, such as the three previously listed, color photos of the specimens are advised to have on each page, though if a team is particularly skilled at ID, they can do well without this. Some events, like Wind Power, typically will not have as large a binder, so using a 1 or 1.5 inch binder would be fine. It is also advised (but not required) to use dividers to help locate sections. Sheet protectors are okay, but if a binder contains many different documents, it may be expensive to use protectors for every single page. Hole reinforcements tend to be cheaper.

It is advised to copy any ripped pages in case of a circumstance that they might fall off. Ripped pages that fall when shaken cannot be used and may cause competitors to lose critical information. Teams who use pages that have fallen out of the binder may be disqualified.

If space in the binder becomes an issue, use double-sided pages as opposed to single-sided pages. This may also help make the binder more easily navigated.

Fact sheets to be placed in the binder may follow similar guidelines as note sheets, but as they are generally not significantly limited in quantity within a binder; the effective restrictions against using the space provided on these sheets is much looser.

Events That Allow Binders

2019

Division B

Circuit Lab
Density Lab
Fossils (up to three-inch)
Herpetology (up to two-inch)
Road Scholar
Thermodynamics

Division C

Astronomy
Circuit Lab
Fossils (up to three-inch)
Geologic Mapping
Herpetology (up to two-inch)
Sounds of Music
Thermodynamics

2018

2018 Binder Events

B Division

Herpetology (unless bringing a commercially-produced field guide)
Hovercraft
Optics
Road Scholar
Rocks and Minerals
Thermodynamics

C Division

Astronomy
Herpetology (unless bringing a commercially-produced field guide)
Hovercraft
Optics
Rocks and Minerals
Thermodynamics

2017

See Also

Note Sheets
Calculators