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High-School Big Data Challenge

Support the Big Data Challenge

As a federal charity, we rely on the generous support of our sponsors to sustain the work we do for Canadian youth. Funds that are donated to STEM Fellowship are appreciated and will be used to support STEM programs, which provide students across the country with unique, inquiry-based, experiential learning opportunities.

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The STEM Fellowship Big Data Challenge (BDC) is a unique inquiry-based learning program that enables high school students to strengthen their critical thinking and problem-solving skills while gaining familiarity with data science. By encouraging students to conduct research projects to collaboratively address issues of real-world significance, the BDC fosters the development of young leaders, innovators and digital citizens.

How it works: Teams of up to 4 students are provided with data sets, workshops, learning resources and tools for data analysis. We present the general competition theme, within which you define a research topic of interest. With the guidance of peer and expert mentors, teams then undertake exploratory analysis of open data to develop sustainable solutions to local and global issues. At the end of the competition, teams submit their research findings in the form of a scientific manuscript. The top teams are invited to present their findings in front of a panel of industry and academic experts in the field.

All abstracts and the top finalists’ full papers will be published by the open access, peer-reviewed STEM Fellowship Journal, published by the NRC Research Press!

The best part is you don’t even need to have prior data science knowledge to join! We deliver webinars and workshops teaching you the basics to get you started on your research!

Check out our full itinerary here.



Computational Thinking

The ability to translate aggregates of data into abstract concepts and conduct data-based reasoning.

Design Mindset

The ability to create solutions in contexts where only part  of the requirements are known.

Social Intelligence

The ability to participate in the collaborative  construction of solutions.

Digital Citizenship

The ability to utilize information technology in order to engage in society. 


Academic Prizes:
Monetary Prizes:

Scholarly publication of all project abstracts and full manuscripts publication of winning project papers in the open access, peer reviewed STEM Fellowship Journal, published by Canadian Science Publishing.

SciNet Supercomputer Tour

Receive mentorship from the League of Innovators to scale your project into an entrepreneurship venture

$1000 Scholarly Communication Award – Toronto

$1000 Scholarly Communication Award – Calgary


  • “The 2018 STEM Fellowship Big Data Challenge was an incredible experience. The Challenge helped me develop skills in the field of analytics, and taught me the importance of big data in the modern world; the mentorships, online training, and connections I received were invaluable. If you are a high school student, I would highly recommend participating in this incredible program – you won’t regret it! I am endlessly grateful to have had the chance to participate.” – Katherine Gotovsky

If interested in becoming a sponsor, please e-mail for more information

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