SciOlyID is a group of Discord bots and associated services dedicated to helping students practice specimen identification for Science Olympiad events. We’re currently in our third Science Olympiad season, continuing to help thousands of students around the country get better at ID. Development started in the summer of 2019 by Ruth Lu (American HS, CA). Tomi Chen (Castro Valley HS, CA) is the current developer/maintainer, with significant code contributions by Larry Xue (West Windsor-Plainsboro HS North, NJ).

What’s Science Olympiad?

Science Olympiad is a team academic competition for K-12 students where they compete in a variety of science and engineering topics. A Science Olympiad competition typically has 23 different events with teams of 15 students. Find out more about Science Olympiad on the official SOINC website.

What makes SciOlyID unique?

We created SciOlyID because there weren’t alternatives for effective ID practice (and also because it seemed like a cool thing to try building). Flashcards or services like Quizlet only give you one specific image for each specimen, which might lead you to memorize that particular image instead of learning how to identify the specimen. Practicing with a partner can be inconvenient and difficult to schedule. Public practice tests might not cover every specimen on the list, and generating custom practice tests is time-consuming.

SciOlyID solves all these problems by pulling from a diverse image set and being completely automated. Just one command fetches you an image, and you’ve already started! Integrating with Discord meets students where they are, increasing convenience and making it easy to get started.

Funding and Development

Previously, SciOlyID was funded by user donations. For the 2022 season, we are proud to be partnering with the 2022 National Science Olympiad Tournament, hosted at Caltech, to cover costs and reach more people. SciOlyID is still 100% volunteer developed and maintained.

Open Source

SciOlyID is entirely free and open-source. Find out what SciOlyID runs on and where the source code can be found.


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