Click here to view the 2012 2nd place national winning documentary from students at Fairview High School. “The Salk Vaccine Trial” by Fairview High School Students: Kali Barnes, Charlie Beckman, Rohith Chintalapally, Jessica Halee and Jack McClellan.
Click here to view a documentary example of state qualifying documentary, "The Civilian Ambassador: Asa Jennings and the Burning of Smyrna" by Cordelia Finley ad Calla Winchell from Denver School of the Arts. The theme was "Debate and Diplomacy in History"
Students must operate all equipment -- both while producing their entry and at each level of competition.
During the competitions, students run the equipment to display their project to a live audience that includes judges. The documentary must stand on its own; students may not narrate or add comments while the documentary is playing.
The documentary must last no longer than ten minutes. In addition, students will have five minutes at each end of the presentation to set up and take down their entry. Students are typically interviewed by the judges after the presentation, as they take down their entry.
Students are required to prepare a process paper in the Documentary category.
At the state contest, we provide smart classrooms with VCR and DVD players, as well as the equipment to project an image from a computer. We suggest that, if possible, you bring your own laptop or other computer to run your project. Macintosh users MUST bring your own adapter to connect your laptop to the VGA cable.
Please bring a backup copy of your project, in case you encounter technical difficulties with the original. DO NOT bring the only copy of your documentary on a flash drive. We urge all students to have multiple copies of their documentary in various formats (i.e. disc, posted on a host site like YouTube, etc). We are not able to provide the equipment to make last-minutes edits to a documentary.
Check with your Regional Coordinator to verify the equipment that will be available for regional competitions.
Rules for Documentaries
Click here to view the rules for the Documentary category from NHD.
All the Details
Read the student contest book carefully and follow its guidelines. Also see Creating Documentaries on the National History Day Web site for more information on documentary projects.