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WKU History Department - Essay Contests

2019-20 History Essay/Video Contests

The WKU History Department is pleased to announce its first annual history contest for Kentucky high school students. There are three separate contests students may enter (students are free to enter as many as they would like):

document iconDocument Based Essay Contest:

Students will need to write an essay that makes a historical argument  that incorporates a variety of primary documents and puts it into its chronological context.

detective iconHistory Detective Contest:

Students will be provided a primary source with all references to location and time period removed.  They then will have to use historical reasoning to figure out where and when it’s from and explain their reasoning.

reel iconReel History Video Contest:

Students will make a short video reporting on or acting out a famous historical event.  The video should be mostly historically accurate and point to the event’s significance but can also be fun and creative.  

Full descriptions of each contest and rules for applying are listed at the links above or to the right; you can also view or download the WKU History Essay Contests flyer.

Because we got a late start announcing the contest last Fall and submissions so far are limited, we've decided to extend the deadline for entering the WKU History Department's first annual history essay and video contest for regional high school students.

The new deadline is Friday Feb. 28th.

Applicants’ entries will be assessed by the WKU History Department in terms of how much they reveal student understanding of the relevant history and the process of doing history.

Awards Recognition for finalists, teachers, and/or families will be on Friday, March 20 at Diddle Arena and will commence right after the awards announcements for the Frances Thompson History Contest.

The winners will receive the following prizes:  First Place: $150 cash; Second Place: $100 cash; Third Place: $50 cash. The winners' schools will also receive $50 contributions to their PTA funds. In addition, students who enroll at WKU and become History minors and majors will also become eligible for substantial scholarship awards.


Submit your application for the 2020 Essay Contests (you may enter more than one) at the link below:


Be sure to follow the instructions at the end of the application form for how to send in your work, and to include the student's name, the school name, and the teacher's name in all email communications.

Questions can be addressed to Dr. Anthony Harkins at Anthony.harkins@wku.edu

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 Last Modified 2/6/20