Students may participate
in one of the following contest categories: Junior Division
(grades 6-8) Senior Division (grades 9-12) In these divisions,
students may participate as individuals or in groups of two
to five. There are five contest categories:
An exhibit is a visual representation of a topic and its significance
in history, much like a small museum exhibit. Labels and captions
should be used creatively with visual images and objects to
enhance the message of the exhibit.
A documentary may take the form of a videotape, slide show,
Power Point presentation, or similar types of multimedia presentations.
It uses images such as film, video, or photographs and audio
such as music, excerpts from tapes, and voice-overs to present
A performance is a dramatic portrayal of a topic and its significance
in history. It should be original and creative, not simply an
oral report or a recitation of facts.
A paper is the traditional form for presenting historical research
and interpretation. As an alternative to a research paper, students
may choose to write an historically-based creative paper, such
as a fictional diary or an epic poem. Please note: The historical
paper category is for individual students only.
The website category is the newest addition to National History
Day, first appearing at the national contest in 2008. This category
features a computer-based presentation of student scholarship
and interpretation, including media and illustrations in addition
to student analysis. Students must use the NHD Website Editor,
provided by NHD, to create and submit their websites for competition.