ACT-SO Competition Categories

Students who complete in the Local and National ACT-SO Competition may compete in up to three (3) of the 33 disciplines within the 6 categories (S.T.E.M., Business, Humanities, Performing Arts, Visual Arts and Culinary Arts.)s:

CULINARY ARTS

The creative practice of cooking. One who engages in the culinary arts, or a culinarian, is either called a cook or a chef depending on their level of expertise.   REQUIREMENTS: 1. Each participant must be a high school junior or senior and is required to have previous or current formal culinary education, training or [...]

Entrepreneurship

Refers to owning, organizing, and managing your own business by providing a necessary product or service. Requirements: Submit six (6) copies of the contestants’ business plan. Six (6) copies of a typed 8-½-inch by 11-inch double spaced business plan must accompany the project. The business plan, which should be a minimum of ten (10) pages […]

Business

Entrepreneurship Refers to owning, organizing, and managing your own business by providing a necessary product or service.

Sculpture

The art of making three-dimensional forms or designs. REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) project can be entered. The National Office will provide display table space. Each contestant  is  required  to  make  an  oral  presentation  explaining  the  methods  or techniques used in developing the project not to exceed three (3) minutes. Craft projects (i.e. ceramics, macramé, etc.) […]

Photography

The process, art and technique of capturing images with an analog or digital camera Examples include but are not limited to: Black and white photographs, color photographs, digital or  analog  photographs,  photograms,  other  experimental  photography,  etc. REQUIREMENTS: No more than six (6) photographs can be submitted or one (1) collage of work. The photographs and/or  […]

Painting

Art  created  by  applying  pigment  on  a  two-dimensional  surface  with  a    brush,    knife,    or    hand and/or the manipulation of digital processes with a computer Examples   include   but   are   not   limited   to:   Oil,   acrylic,   watercolor,   gouache,   tempera,   ink, encaustic,  fresco,  spray  paint,  etc.  applied  on  canvas,  canvas  board,  paper,  mixed  media  or  any flat  surface. REQUIREMENTS: […]

Filmmaking

The art and process of making motion pictures. REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) film is to be entered. The running time of the film must not exceed five (5) minutes. A storyboard or project theme must be associated with the film Please  Note:  Storyboards  are  NOT  stills  taken  from  the  film;  rather  they  are  original  drawings, […]

Drawing

The art of representing forms and figures on a surface by means of lines executed by hand or computer  (digital)  generated  processes. REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) project can be submitted. The national office will provide easels. The contestant is required to make an oral presentation, which will not exceed three (3) minutes, explaining the methods […]

Visual Arts

Drawing The art of representing forms and figures on a surface by means of lines. Filmmaking The art and process of making motion pictures. Painting The art of laying on paints with a brush or a knife. Photography The process, art and technique of taking images recorded by a camera and reproducing them on a […]

Poetry (Performance)

An  original  poem  or  prose,  written  by  the  contestant,  performed  as  a  monologue  or  exchange  involving extemporization. REQUIREMENTS: Submit six (6) notarized copies of the original poem. The top  of   each  page  must   include  the  contestant’s  name,   page  number   and  unit   name  and number. Poems should  be  typed,  using  12  point  Times  New  Roman,  Verdana, […]

Oratory

The art of effective written, and oral presentation to persuade or inform.   (This is not a dramatic presentation.) REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) speech is to be presented, and it must not exceed five (5) minutes. The selection of the speech is the decision of the contestant;  it should be an original piece written by the […]

Music Vocal / Contemporary

The art  of  performing  with  the  human  voice  rhythmic  tones  or  sounds  to  produce  music  with  the  tones of the present. REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) song is to be performed, and it must not exceed two and a half (2.5) minutes. (Contestants not adhering to the maximum time requirement are subject to point deduction.) Musical […]

Music Vocal / Classical

The  art  of  performing  with  the  human  voice  rhythmic  tones  or  sounds  of  the  late  18th  and  19th centuries characterized by an emphasis on balance, clarity, and moderation. REQUIREMENTS: Only one (1) song is to be performed, and it must not exceed five (5) minutes.  (Contestants not adhering to the maximum time requirement are subject […]

Music Instrumental / Contemporary

The art of performing with a device used to produce music with the tones of the present. REQUIREMENTS: The musical  selection  must  be  one  specifically  written  for  solo  performances  and  may  not exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants  not  adhering  to  the  maximum  time  requirement  are subject to point deduction.) The selection   performed   should  feature   a […]

Music Instrumental / Classical

The  art  of  performing  with  a  device  used  to  produce  music  with  tones  of  the  late  18th  and  19th centuries characterized by an emphasis on balance, clarity, and moderation. REQUIREMENTS: The musical  selection  must  be  one  specifically  written  for  solo  performances.  The  performance may  be  an  excerpt  and  may  not  exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants […]

Dramatics

The art of staging or acting plays. DRAMATIC ARTS: ACTING REQUIREMENTS: The performance must be a minimum of three (3) minutes and maximum of five (5) minutes. (Contestants not adhering to the minimum and maximum time requirements are subject to point deduction and/or disqualification.) All material must be from a published play. Students should not […]

Dance (Traditional)

To  perform  a  series  of  rhythmic  and  patterned  bodily  movements  usually  performed  to  music  to  reflect the life of the people of a certain region or country. REQUIREMENTS: The solo  performance  must  not  exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants  not  adhering  to  the maximum  time requirement are subject to point deduction and/or disqualification.) Costumes are optional, […]

Dance (Modern)

To  perform  a  series  of  rhythmic  and  patterned  bodily  movements  usually  performed  to  music  that focuses on the dancer’s interpretations using their emotions and moods to develop choreography. REQUIREMENTS: The solo  performance  must  not  exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants  not  adhering  to  the maximum  time requirement are subject to point deduction and/or disqualification.) Costumes are […]

Dance (Contemporary)

To perform a series of rhythmic and technical patterned bodily movements usually performed to music.   REQUIREMENTS:     The solo  performance  must  not  exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants  not  adhering  to  the maximum  time requirement are subject to point deduction and/or disqualification.)     Costumes are optional, but should be appropriate to the choreography […]

Dance (Ballet)

To  perform  a  series  of  rhythmic  and  highly  technical  patterned  bodily  movements  usually  performed  to music using grace and precision. REQUIREMENTS: The solo  performance  must  not  exceed  five  (5)  minutes.  (Contestants  not  adhering  to  the maximum  time  requirement are  subject to  point deduction  and/or disqualification.) Costumes are optional, but should be appropriate to the choreography […]

Performing Arts

Dance (Ballet) To perform a series of rhythmic and highly technical patterned bodily movements usually performed to music using grace and precision. Dance (Contemporary) To perform a series of rhythmic and technical patterned bodily movements usually performed to music. Dance (Modern) To perform a series of rhythmic and patterned bodily movements usually performed to music […]

Poetry (Written)

A composition, marked by language chosen for its sound, beauty and evocative power.   REQUIREMENTS: Submit six (6) notarized copies of the original poem. The top  of   each  page  must   include  the  contestant’s   name,   page  number   and  unit   name  and number. Poems should  be  typed,  using  12  point  Times  New  Roman,  Verdana,  Georgia,  or  Comic […]

Playwriting

A literary composition developed for the stage.   REQUIREMENTS: Submit six (6) original, notarized copies of a one-act play. The play must be an original (written only by the contestant). The play  must  be  typed  and  double  spaced,  not  to  exceed  twenty  (20)  pages.  A  one-page synopsis must be included. The top  of  each  page […]

Short Story

A  brief  examination  of  a  subject  in  prose  usually  expressing  a  personal  view  or  interpretation  of  a subject or topic.   REQUIREMENTS: Only one  (1)  notarized  Short  Story  written  only  by  the  contestant,  with  six  (6)  copies  of  the notarized  original  should  be  submitted  on  or  before  the  specified  deadline.  The  top  of  each page […]

Original Essay

A brief examination of a subject in prose usually expressing a personal view or interpretation of a subject or topic. REQUIREMENTS: 1. Six (6) notarized copies of the original essay written only by the contestant should be submitted on or before the specified deadline. The top of each page must include the contestant’s name, page […]

Music Composition

The science or art of arranging music by ordering tones or sounds in succession, in combination or in temporal relationships to produce a composition having unity and continuity. REQUIREMENTS: 1. Mail six (6) original notarized compositions. 2. The top of each page must include the contestant’s name, page number and unit name and number. 3. […]

humanities

The Humanities Music Composition The science or art of arranging music by ordering tones or sounds in succession, in combination or in temporal relationships to produce a composition having unity and continuity. Short Story A brief examination of a subject in prose usually expressing a personal view or interpretation of a subject or topic.. Playwriting […]

Are You Thinking About Entering the ACT-SO Science Competition?

ACT-SO national science judges were very impressed with the students who competed in the science categories and with the projects they presented. As a result, the science judges would like to see even more students compete in the science categories. The information provided in the document below is meant to assist students in planning, executing, […]

Medicine & Health

The study of diseases and health of humans and animals. Projects in this category could involve dentistry, pharmacology, pathology, ophthalmology, nutrition, sanitation, dermatology, allergies, speech and hearing, etc.

Physics

Theories, principles and laws governing energy and the effect of energy on matter.     Projects  in   this  category  could  involve  solid  state  physics,  optics,  acoustics,  particle    physics, nuclear   physics,   atomic   energy,   superconductivity,   fluid   and   gas   dynamics,   thermodynamics, semiconductors,  magnetism,  quantum  mechanics,  biophysics,  etc. The  following  requirements  apply  to  Biology/Microbiology;  Chemistry/Biochemistry;  Computer Science; Earth and […]

Mathematics

The science of numbers and their operations, interrelations, combinations, generalizations, and abstractions of spaced configurations and their structure. Development of formal logical systems or various numerical and algebraic computations, and the application of these principles. Projects in this category could involve calculus, geometry, number theory, statistics, complex analysis, probability, etc.

Engineering

Technology.   Projects that directly apply scientific principles to manufacturing and practical uses. Projects   in   this   category   could   involve   civil,   mechanical,   aeronautical,   chemical,   electrical, photographic,     sound,     automotive,     marine,     heating,     refrigerating,     transportation,     and environmental  engineering;  electronics;  etc.  

Earth & Space Sciences

The    body    of    sciences    that    include    geology,    mineralogy,    physiographic,    oceanography, meteorology,  climatology,  astronomy,  speleology,  seismology,  geography,  etc.   Projects in this category could also be concerned with environmental science such as the study of pollution (air, water, and land) sources and their control as well as ecology

Architecture

Plans for and models of structures and outdoor spaces. Examples   may   include   but   are   not   limited   to:   Building   designs,   landscape   designs,   interior designs,   urban   plans.   Can   include   2D   work   such   as   hand-drawn   sketches,   computer-aided designs,  blueprints,  and  floor  plans,  OR  3D  work  such  as  scale  models  made  from  foam  core, balsa wood, cardboard, wooden blocks, […]

S.T.E.M.

Architecture The science, art or profession of designing buildings or outdoor spaces. Biology / Microbiology The science of life or of the origin, structure, reproduction, growth and development of living organisms collectively. Chemistry / Biochemistry The science that deals with the composition, structure and properties of chemical processes and phenomena of substances and the transformation [...]

Computer Science

The  science  that  deals  with  the   theoretical  aspects  of  computers  including   storage  and  the transformation  of  data  using  computers.  This   category   pertains   to   the   study   and   development   of   computer      hardware,      software engineering,   Internet   networking   and   communications,   graphics   (including   human   interface), simulations/virtual  reality    or    computational    science    (including    data    structures,    encryption, coding and information theory).

Chemistry / Biochemistry

The  science  that  deals  with  the  composition,  structure  and  properties  of  chemical  processes  and phenomena of substances and the transformation that they undergo. Projects  in  this  category  could  involve  physical  chemistry,  organic  chemistry,  inorganic  chemistry, materials,  plastics,  fuels,  pesticides,  metallurgy,  soil  chemistry,  etc.  This  category  also  includes the   chemistry   of   life   processes   such   as   molecular […]

Biology / Microbiology

The  science  of  life  or  of  the  origin,  structure,  reproduction,  growth  and  development  of  living organisms collectively. Projects  in  this  category  could  involve  the  biology  of  organisms  from  the  macroscopic  scale  to the microscopic scale (e.g., bacteria, viruses, protozoa, fungi, yeast, genes, etc.)

Science

S.T.E.M. Architecture The science, art or profession of designing buildings or outdoor spaces. Biology / Microbiology The science of life or of the origin, structure, reproduction, growth and development of living organisms collectively. Chemistry / Biochemistry The science that deals with the composition, structure and properties of chemical processes and phenomena of substances and the […]