Official State of Iowa Website Here is how you know
History Day students at state contest

Getting Started

If you’re new to National History Day, you may have lots of questions. The following resources have answers about digging up information in archives; using primary sources; and presenting your work in different formats (as an exhibit, website, documentary, paper or performance). If you’re interested in competing, you’ll also learn about this year’s theme and rules.

Insider Tips

Insider Tips is a webinar series brought to you by National History Day in Iowa. The series covers the whole process, from the beginning (choosing a topic) to the end (preparing to compete at district, state and national contests). 

Webinar Handout
How to Research and Begin the Annotated Bibliography - featuring Annals of Iowa Editor, Andrew Klumpp  
Crafting a Historical Argument and Thesis Statement - featuring Annals of Iowa Editor, Andrew Klumpp  
Creating a National History Day Project - featuring Annals of Iowa Editor, Andrew Klumpp  
Ask the Mentor: Stand Out in Your Category Download
Why National History Day? - featuring veteran teachers  
Building the Project & Preparing for Districts - featuring veteran teachers  

Project Basics

Choosing your project category is an important step in the NHD process. You'll need to think carefully about which category will help you best communicate your thesis and research. In the videos below, NHD in Iowa students and teachers share their advice for creating a successful project in no matter what category you choose.

Documentary Category Intro Video
Exhibit Category Intro Video
Paper Category Intro Video
Performance Category Intro Video
Website Category Intro Video

Ask a Librarian

Are you researching from home? Have you found something at the State Historical of Iowa Research Center’s website and need something scanned? Do you have a question about a source? Feel free to submit a reference request and ask a librarian for help.

Coordinator Consultations (formerly Mentorship Program)

As NHD in Iowa evaluates its previous mentorship program, state coordinator Hanna Howard is stepping in to help with questions about research and project development. Fill out the request form and Hanna will contact you to set up your consultation.


Check back in Summer 2023 for information on student and teacher workshops.