Important Dates & Times

Saturday March 06, 2021 at 12:01 AM
Friday April 16, 2021 at 11:59 PM
Monday April 19, 2021 at 8:30 AM
Friday April 23, 2021 at 8:00 AM
Saturday May 01, 2021 at 11:59 PM
Wednesday April 21, 2021 at 8:00 AM

Contest Rules

Download the new 2021 NHD Contest Rulebook


National History Day in Idaho

National History Day in Idaho (NHD) is a year-long student-led academic program focused on historical research, interpretation, and creative expression for 4th-12th grade students across Idaho. By participating in NHD, students become writers, filmmakers, web designers, playwrights and artists as they create unique contemporary expressions of history.  NHD in Idaho operates under the umbrella of the national program, and this will be Idaho’s 38th year of participation. It is one of the signature programs of the Idaho State Historical Society and the Idaho State Museum.

Students who participate in NHD build skills that are key to success in college, career, and citizenship.  NHD teaches critical thinking, writing, and research skills. They learn to speak publicly, collaborate with team members, communicate ideas effectively with diverse audiences, manage their time, and persevere through challenges.

At the beginning of the school year, Idaho students in grades 4-12 (in public, private, tribal, parochial and home schools) research topics related to an annual theme using primary and secondary sources, and then present their findings in one of five formats: an informative exhibit, a dramatic performance, a compelling documentary, an interactive website, or a historical paper. The students’ topics may be of family, local, state, national, or world importance. Students are encouraged to analyze and interpret their information and draw conclusions as to the topic’s historical significance.

Once the projects are complete, the students compete in a series of contests beginning with regional contests in 5 areas of Idaho, and then the top two winners in each category of each age division advance to the State Contest at the College of Idaho in April. 

National History Day in Idaho is operated by the Idaho State Historical Society. Learn more at

Contact Us: 
610 North Julia Davis Drive
Boise, ID 83702
Phone: 208-280-5190



Contest Day Information

Competition Schedule

Students projects will be viewed by judges in advance of the contest on May 1. 

Per NHD policy, there will be no student interviews.




Group Documentary
Group Exhibit
Group Performance
Group Website
Individual Documentary
Individual Exhibit
Individual Performance
Individual Website

NHD Judging Criteria

 Here are the qualities a judge will use to evaluate your NHD project. After you create your project, go through this list and ask yourself if you’ve met the criteria or incorporated the information into your project.  

Historical Quality: 80%

  • Historical Argument:  Make a well-formulated historical argument supported by thorough analysis. Weave the annual theme throughout your project. 

  • Wide Research:  Integrate a body of credible research into a fully developed historical argument.  

  • Primary Sources:  Use primary sources to develop your historical argument.  

  • Historical Context:  Analyze the short-term and long-term causes of your historical event.  

  • Multiple Perspectives:  Integrate multiple perspectives throughout your historical argument.  

  • Historical Accuracy:  Use information that you have verified is historically accurate.  

  • Significance in History:  Draw evidence-based conclusions about the significance of your topic in history. 

  • Student Voice:  Your ideas, analysis, argument, and conclusions are original and persuasive.  

Clarity of Presentation: 20%

  • Project and written materials are original, clear, appropriate, organized, and articulate
  • Project is organized; visual impact is appropriate to topic


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