History Day

National History Day is a dynamic program that encourages students to become historians by developing research, analysis, presentation and social skills. Students across the state of  Washington select a topic related to an annual national theme. Students work individually or in groups to conduct extensive historical research using primary and secondary sources. Based on their research and analysis, students  develop projects ranging from research papers to performances, documentaries to websites, and more. 

Students may elect to enter their work in regional History Day competitions, held in February and March. There are two divisions: Junior (grades 6-8) and Senior (grades 9-12). Regional winners in each division advance to the Washington History Day state competition, held in late April or early May. The first and second place finishers in each category have the thrilling opportunity to participate in the National History Day competition in June, held at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD.

The National History Day organization and its state affiliate, Washington History Day, provide leading-edge training and curriculum materials to help educators meet and exceed education standards. Annual workshops help educators learn how to adopt National History Day in their classrooms, while also offering strategies that make history education interesting, exciting and fun for students.

The Washington State Historical Society is proud to be our state's National History Day coordinating agency. 

For more information, contact Katie DeMar-Aldrich, National History Day Coordinator, Washington State Historical Society, at or 253-798-5921.


Watch this video for a brief introduction to History Day...


2018 Contest Theme 

2018: Conflict and Compromise in History

Watch this Gold Medal winner from the 2013 National History Day competition...

It earned Heni Barnes, from Coupeville High School, a $5,000 award from the History Channel!


For Students

So you're a history buff? Check out all of the ins and outs of preparing for and participating in History Day. Resources include downloadable .pdf documents and website links that will help you choose, create, and compete with your project.

Students Resources

For Teachers

Prepare your students for History Day with all the documents and links we've compiled for easy reference. Get the tools you need to guide them through the selection and creation of their projects, as well as how to inspire them along the way.

Teachers Resources

Judges Resources

Just can't get enough of history? Volunteer as a judge for a History Day event and be a part of the exciting process of historical inquiry. We provide all the information you need to get started and prepare for your judging assignment.

Judges Resources