All projects will be judged by the following criteria:
- Originality —Was the entry original, creative, and imaginative in content and implementation?
- Clarity —Was the student presentation to the judge clear? (Nervousness will not count against the student)
- Appropriateness —Was the technology/software used appropriately matched?
- Design —Does the overall design support the project purpose?
At the time of the judging, students will be required to:
- Demonstrate their projects.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the software as it relates to the project.
- Explain the various aspects of the creation of the project.
- Defend their choice of software for the project.
- Answer judges' questions about the project.
Students should be prepared to explain and demonstrate the highlights of their project in no more than 15 minutes.
Projects are evaluated by the judges to determine the best project in that category. The judges use several instruments for making their evaluation. Actual scoring materials will NOT be released.
Go to Categories page to read the descriptions of the categories. You can also find self-evaluation rubrics that can be used to find strengths and weaknesses of a project. Judges will NOT base final scores solely on these rubrics. They are guidelines only.
How are the winning projects determined?
Teams of two judges will interview each participant for no more than 15 minutes and see the project. If a project (video, slideshow, presentation, etc.) is longer than about five minutes, the judges will view just a portion of the project. The judges use a rubric guide and suggested questions to evaluate each project. After completing the judging of all projects in a grade/category, the judges will rank the projects and the top three will be awarded trophies. All decisions of the judges are final, and the Tech Competition staff do not change judging results.
The judges only viewed a portion of my project and not the whole thing. Why didn't they watch/look at the whole project?
The judges have a strict 15 minute window in which to judge a project. Judges are assessing a student's use of technology, not a finished product such as a video or Powerpoint presentation. In order to interview the student about the project, ask questions, and fill out the Student Feedback form, the judges may view only a portion of a project. Judges are instructed to spend no more than five minutes viewing the actual project to leave time for the other aspects of judging. We strongly suggest that students limit all presentations to no more than three to five minutes so that judges may see the entire presentation.
Can I see the judge's materials after judging is over?
Judge's materials are not shared. Judges turn them over to Competition officials until after the Competition closes at which time they are destroyed. All decisions of the judges are final and Competition officials do not change any judge's results. Tech Competition planners appreciate the dedication of the judges who give up a Saturday to help make the Competition a reality and we stand by the decisions of the judges.
Why isn't the Tech Competition set up like a Science Fair with open viewing for parents and students?
Science Fair judges evaluate projects in the absence of the student who created it. Projects are static displays that are set up and left for viewing by judges and visitors. Tech Competition judging is interactive and involves judges meeting with the students who created the project. Most Tech Competition projects are not static displays and must be observed in operation. If judge interviewing were going on with visitors moving throughout the judging area, it would be very hard to hear and to focus on the project and student. Students come to the Tech Competition from all across the county. We have a limited time in the building and to require the students and volunteers to arrive early and stay late after the competition is not feasible. In the past, when we had a one hour preview period to observe projects, it was difficult to closing the viewing time and get the judging started.
Can adults or other students help me with my project?
Yes, it is perfectly acceptable to receive help from others when working on your project. However, the project is to be a work by the student or student team of two. Any help should be to assist the student in the creation of the project and judges will expect a student to explain ANY aspect of a project's function. If someone else helps you do something, be sure that you understand how to explain it to the judges.
If my project won at my local school in one category, but someone decides that it would be better to be in a different category, can I change my category?
No. The Tech Competition will ONLY accept projects in the category in which they competed at their local school. The submission of winners from the school liaison serves as the official entry list and will not be changed by the Tech Competition officials. The rules state: “Students may not "switch" categories. The project will ONLY be judged in the category in which it was registered by the local school liaison. THERE WILL BE NO EXCEPTIONS as confirmation emails will be sent to all school liaisons prior to the competition to catch any registration mistakes.
I can't be here for my judge time. Can I switch with a friend?
No. We do not allow any changes in schedule as it is a balance of categories, grade levels, judging space, and judging times. Changes in judging time could result in other students not getting judged fairly or a great delay in the awards ceremony. Please arrive at least 1 hour before your judging time and understand that you will have 15 minutes prior to your judging time to set up your project. (Robotics will have 20 minutes for set up.)