History papers are submitted for judging to the Heart of Texas Regional History Fair office by the deadline, approximately four to six weeks in advance of the regional fair itself. A complete entry in the historical paper category includes four copies of the paper, each with a title page in the correct format and an annotated bibliography. Papers should not be submitted in covers, folders, or binders of any kind.
Elements of an Excellent Historical Paper
The key to a good paper is critical and extensive investigation of a subject in a broad range of sources, both primary and secondary. The aim is to discover new facts, to interpret them correctly, and to reach a conclusion.
Begin your paper with a clear, concise statement of opinion which the entire paper is written to support. Choose a narrow subject and stay focused, supporting your thesis with research.
A research paper is not a simple narration or a dry list of facts. Present your thesis in a strong introductory paragraph. Support your thesis with a clear, logical flow of ideas. Finally, write a strong conclusion which draws together or summarizes all the facts that support your thesis.
Remember that research should be balanced. The best papers begin with a strong, often controversial thesis, and thorough research must include an investigation of all points of view. A thesis cannot be supported merely by assertion of opinion; it must be defended by a fair consideration of all the facts and by thoughtful analysis and interpretation of those facts.
Basic Requirements for Historical Papers
Be sure to read all of the information provided on this Web site before you begin work on your paper. Pay special attention to the mandatory rules that you must follow in order to compete in the historical paper category at the Heart of Texas Regional History Fair. Contact the HOTRHF coordinator if you have any questions.
Remember, a paper entered in the history fair for judging must be the student's own work. Parents, teachers, and friends may advise only. Advising includes assisting in locating information, evaluating project ideas, or reading written materials.
HOTRHF Note: this page is current and up to date for 2014.