County/ Regional Fair Submission Deadline
Alameda Mar 18
Butte Mar 16
Calaveras Mar 17
Contra Costa Mar 24
Fresno Mar 26
Glenn Mar 19
Humboldt Mar 27
Kern Mar 25
Los Angeles Mar 30
Mendocino Mar 24
Merced Mar 16
Monterey Apr 01
Nevada Apr 01
Orange Mar 31
Riverside Mar 16
Sacramento Mar 24
San Benito Mar 26
San Diego Mar 20
San Francisco (Golden Gate) Mar 24
San Joaquin Mar 16
San Mateo Mar 25
Santa Barbara Mar 23
Santa Clara Mar 23
Santa Cruz Mar 25
San Bernardino (SIM) Mar 20
Solano Mar 31
Tulare Mar 24
Ventura Apr 01

The procedures for qualified projects and for alternates are different.


The Submission Deadline is the date by which you should complete the application located on the Fair’s Web site. Failure to meet this deadline may result in qualified applicants being rejected in favor of alternates from the same affiliate. The Final Submission Deadline is the last date on which applications may be submitted absent explicit instructions otherwise. For 2020 the Final Submission Deadline is Wednesday, April 1.

The Decision Date for any affiliate is the day on which acceptance and rejection decisions will be announced. This date is seven (7) calendar days after the affiliate’s Submission Deadline, or the Final Decision Date, whichever is earlier. For 2020 the Final Decision Date is Sunday, April 5.

Submission Deadline

Your Submission Deadline is the date on or before which your Application should be submitted. Your application will be considered submitted when you have completed the final page of the application and pressed its “Submit” button. You will receive confirmation of receipt of your application via e-mail immediately following its submission. Within one working day submitted applications will be acknowledged on the Fair’s Web site. Please note that although your Application must be submitted through the Fair’s Web site, all other forms found in this Application Packet (where required) must be delivered by other means described on those forms.

Applications may continue to be submitted after an affiliate’s Submission Deadline until the Final Submission Deadline, but will only be accepted if the affiliate’s allocation has not already been filled by qualified and alternate projects which were submitted earlier.

Team Projects: While all members of a team must submit their own individual application (and submit their own ancillary materials below), for purposes of determining whether the team’s application was submitted on time or not we will use the earliest Submission Date of any member of the team. Every other member of the team should still meet the Submission Deadline but will not be penalized if his/her application is submitted later.

Ancillary Materials

Immediately after completing online applications, students with qualified projects (N.B., qualified projects only, not alternates) should send all other required materials to the Fair.

Send via US Mail or private delivery service:
Signature Card
Application Fee
Send via email to CSEF.SRC@gmail.com:
Either the CSEF Certification Form or the complete set of ISEF forms. See the Application Packet for the reasons to select which is appropriate for you.

These ancillary materials must be received in order for your application to be considered complete. Students with incomplete applications may be accepted, but will not be allowed to register at the Fair, set-up their project display, or otherwise participate in the Fair until all required materials have been received.

Qualified Projects vs. Alternates

It is likely that many, if not most, alternates will not be accepted. Therefore, even though alternates must meet the same Submission Deadline as qualified projects, alternates should not pay the Application Fee after submitting their application. If accepted, alternates will then be instructed to pay the Application Fee and submit other ancillary materials which must be received before they will be allowed to participate in the Fair.

Acceptance Decisions

Applicants from each affiliated fair whose Project Summaries have passed the PARC (Project Abstract Review Committee) review will be accepted in the following order:

  1. All qualified projects submitted on time will be accepted.
  2. Alternate projects submitted on time will be accepted in the priority order specified by their affiliated fair until the affiliate’s allocation has been filled.
  3. Any projects submitted after the affiliate’s Submission Deadline will be accepted in order of submission without regard to their status as qualified or alternate until the affiliate’s allocation has been filled.

Last updated: Sat Mar 7 17:38:11 PST 2020
California Science & Engineering Fair / Deadlines 2020 / CSEF@usc.edu