Sponsored by the University of Sydney, the Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize encourages students to communicate a scientific concept in a way that is accessible and entertaining to the public while painlessly increasing their science knowledge or, as Dr Karl and Adam like to say, "Learn something without even noticing". It is intended to support budding young scientists across the nation, who will be our future leaders in research, discovery and communication.

Each film entered in 2020 must be based on the theme 'Water'.

Entries to the 2020 Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize have closed

Students must focus on a scientific concept, discovery or invention, or their own scientific hypothesis. Judges will make a selection based on the accuracy of the science content, science communication skills and originality in capturing the theme ‘Water’. It’s also important that sound and image quality are good enough for judges to assess an entry. View full entry guidelines here.

It's an inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odourless, nearly colourless, chemical substance that’s the basis of the hydrosphere and vital for life on Earth! ‘Water’ has been selected as this year’s theme for its wide scope of interpretation, so there are plenty of opportunities for students to explore a topic that satisfies their curiosity.

Judges will be assessing originality in capturing the theme, so students should dedicate some time to think about how they will explore it. They may wish to start by taking one minute to write down words they associate with water and discussing their list with a teacher or guardian. It’s important they pick a topic they’re interested in so that their passion shines through.

Primary school

First place: $2,000 plus a $350 Abbey’s book voucher

Second place: $1,250 plus a $150 Abbey’s book voucher

Third place: $750

Secondary School

First place: $3,000 plus a $350 Abbey’s book voucher

Second place: $2,000 plus a $150 Abbey’s book voucher

Third place: $1,000

Prize money is divided equally between student/s and their school (their school to receive 50% of the prize money).

For team entries, Abbey’s book vouchers are divided equally between students.

Representatives from the three finalist teams will win a trip to Sydney for the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes Award Dinner.

Prize information released Wednesday 5 February

Entries open Wednesday 4 March

Entries close 7pm AEST Friday 15 May (extended from initial deadline of 1 May).

Finalists notified by mid-July

Finalists announced Tuesday 29 September (extended from initial date of late July due to COVID-19)

Winners announced Tuesday 24 November (extended from initial date of 26 August due to COVID-19)

Participation certificates distributed by Friday 30 October

Is there an entry fee?

No. The Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize is free to enter.

Are home educated students eligible to enter?
Yes. Students that are home-schooled in accordance with the relevant state or territory legislation are eligible to enter.

I am in year seven, but still at primary school. Should I enter the primary or secondary category?

As you are in primary school in the state where you are enrolled, you should enter the primary school category.

Can an entry be made up of students from more than one school?
Yes. Students entering do not need to be from the same school nor in the same grade. The film should be entered in the appropriate category (either Primary or Secondary school) for the oldest member of the group.

How do I submit my short film?
Each individual student or team will need to complete one online entry form and upload their short film as part of this process. Hard copy submissions, including films, will not be accepted.

What if my short film is over 90 seconds long?
Edit, edit, edit! Judges will not consider entries that exceed 90 seconds, so it’s important that you stick to the time limit.

I'm having trouble filling out the entry form. Who can assist?

Please contact the Eureka Prizes team on 02 9320 6230 or via email at eureka@austmus.gov.au. It’s important that you get in touch well before Friday 15 May as we cannot edit entries after the submission deadline or grant extensions to the deadline.

There’s never been a theme before, why have you introduced one now?

Each year we receive many short films, which in the past have explored a wide range of topics. The introduction of a broad theme will help judges more fairly and effectively assess against the criteria.

The theme of water has been selected for its wide scope of interpretation. Students can link the theme to other areas of interest, allowing them to stay true to both the theme and their curiosity.

I’ve entered the Eureka Prizes before, but my login details no longer work

The Australian Museum Eureka Prizes has launched a new online entry system and accounts using our old system could not be transferred. If you would like to submit an entry, you will need to set up a new account. It will take less than two minutes to register!

I’ve submitted my online entry form and short film; how do I know if they have been received?

You will receive a confirmation email from the Australian Museum Eureka Prizes as soon as you submit your online entry form. If you do not receive this email, check your junk folder. In the event that you still can't locate your confirmation email, please call us on 02 9320 6230 and a member of our team will assist.

I’ve submitted my online entry form and short film but would like to make some changes; how can I do this?

You can log in to the online entry system and make changes directly into your form until entries close at 7pm AEST Friday 15 May 2020. The system will automatically update your entry and you will not be able to recover earlier versions.

You will not be able to make any changes to your entry or nomination after entries close.

I missed the submission deadline. Can I have an extension?

Under no circumstance will the submission deadline be extended, and the Australian Museum will not enter any correspondence relating to this matter.

When will finalists be notified?

Finalists will be contacted in early July - please ensure that you have access to your phone and email in the two weeks leading up to this date.

Please ensure that you provide accurate and complete contact information in your online entry form. Unless a student is aged 18 years or over, it’s important that they provide the contact details of their parent or guardian - we cannot communicate directly with students aged under 18 years.

Can I get feedback on my entry?

Due to the large volume of entries received, unfortunately judges cannot provide individual feedback.

It’s important for short filmmakers to know about their responsibilities when it comes to using other people’s content in their work. If entrants plan to use materials such as music, footage, images and scripts that are not their own, they will need to get permission from the copyright owners before submitting their film. We’ve put together a list of resources to help guide you.

Arts Law Centre of Australia legal information for filmmakers

Australian Copyright Council general copyright advice

Copyright Agency information on copyright protected words and images

Free Music Archive royalty free music

Music Rights Australia information on music copyright

Screenrights for information on copyright protected audiovisual content

I would encourage anyone with an interest in video making and science communication to contribute to this competition. It's such a great challenge and fantastic to do with a bunch of your friends. Anna Hardy - past winner

Contact us

Please call us on (02) 9320 6230 or email eureka@austmus.gov.au