/ - Science Fair Foundation British Columbia

Information for Judges


This year, we’re welcoming students from multiple regions into one fair. If you live in the Pacific Northwest, Fraser Valley, West Kootenay, South Fraser, Central Okanagan, Central Interior or southern Vancouver Island region, your region is participating in the BC/Yukon Virtual Science Fair.  

If you live in the Cariboo Mainline, East Kootenay, Greater Vancouver, Northern BC, Northern Vancouver Island or Yukon-Stikine region, you can find a link to your regional fair here.

Every year, science fairs offer thousands of students in BC and the Yukon the opportunity to develop original scientific research, innovative projects and 21st Century learning skills. Students who develop science fair projects enjoy project-based learning that extends science beyond the classroom and encourages curiosity about topics of personal interest. The finalists of our provincial/territorial science fairs receive awards, scholarships and recognition for their achievements. Finalist status is also a prerequisite for competition at the Canada Wide Science Fair.
 
Judging is the highlight of the science fair experience for many students. Students love the opportunity to exchange ideas with specialists in their field. In return, most judges find talking with science fair participants to be a very positive experience. The energy, enthusiasm and inspiration students bring to their projects is contagious.


Expectations of Judges

 

Register for judging by the deadline of February 22

Registration information includes contact details and questions about experience, qualifications, preferences (age categories, topics of interest), and availability, and should take approximately 5 minutes to complete.

Judge registration is now closed. 


Join us for judge training during the period of March 1-12

Judge training will occur live during two virtual sessions, with a chance for Q&A: Monday, March 1st at 4 p.m. or Thursday, March 4th at 7 p.m. PST. Live sessions will be recorded and made available for those who would like to attend at their convenience.


Judge projects in two rounds, March 13-21 and April 6-11

In Round 1 Judging (March 13-21) you will review, score and provide feedback on short student videos and project information at a time that is convenient for you. Depending on the volume of submissions received, you may be asked to make recommendations about a subset of projects that should pass through to Round 2 judging to compete for awards and placement at the Canada Wide Science Fair.

In Round 2 Judging (April 6-11) you will interview students via Zoom who have passed through from Round 1, assign final scores, and make award decisions.

We are asking judges to judge a minimum of four science fair projects across Round 1 and Round 2. Each science fair project will require approximately 1 to 1.5 hours of your time in total.

Judge Training and Resources

Judging Worksheets

Please note that these are worksheets only, for your draft scoring and notes.
Your judging scores and feedback must be submitted online through the Judging Tally Sheet & Student Feedback Submission Form.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

Check out the Judge Training & Resoures section above! The Training Presentation and live session recordings are a really great way to get an overview of this year's judging process and what's expected of you, as well as tips from experienced judges. 
Thank you so much for your interest in judging at the 2021 BC/Yukon Virtual Science Fair. Judge registration has closed for this year and we are now scheduling interviews with the participants. If you are interested in participating in future events, please consider signing-up for our mailing list to receive the latest information. Subscribe > 
You will be assigned to judge student projects based on the availability, expertise and preferences you submitted during your registration. You will be given information about each of your assigned projects by March 12th.
In Round 1 Judging (March 13-21) you will review, score and provide feedback on the project submissions that are assgined to you, independently and at your convenience. 

Each project submission will include:
  • A 3- to 5-minute video
  • A one-page written report
  • Up to 5 pages of labelled photos and/or graphs
  • Other project materials, such as logbooks (optional)
Guidelines for student project submission can be found here.

You will be given a link to each of your assigned project submissions by March 12th. You must submit your Round 1 scores and feedback for each project using the Judging Tally Sheet and Student Feedback Submission Form by no later than March 21st at 5 p.m. PST. Please remember to submit a separate form for each of your assigned projects.
 
In Round 2 Judging (April 6-9) you will interview the students you judged in Round 1 via Zoom, and assign final scores and feedback to their projects.

You will be given a Zoom link for each of your interivews. Every interview will include three judges. Advice on interviewing students can be found in the Training Presentation and Sample Interview Questions linked above. 

In advance of each interview, you should review your initial scoring and feedback from Round 1 and check to see if the student's project submission folder contains any new information for review. Students will have the option to continue working on their projects from the initial project submission deadline of March 5th until the supplementary information deadline of April 1st. Updates may be available in the student's project submission folder and should ideally be reviewed prior to their interview. 

You must submit your final Round 2 scores and feedback for each project using the Judging Tally Sheet and Student Feedback Submission Form by no later than April 9th at 5 p.m. PST. Please remember to submit a separate form for each of your assigned projects .
 
All available judges will gather via Zoom by region/age group on April 10 at 9 a.m. or 1 p.m. PST to rank projects that they have reviewed. The schedule for these sessions will be distributed with your judging assignments.

Please plan to join on April 10, if you are able. If you cannot join, we will be relying on your written feedback from Round 1 and Round 2 judging to make decisions. ​

Immediately following discussions by region/age group, Judging Team Leads will meet to make awards decisions and select Canada-Wide Science Fair finalists, using rankings as a guide.

Gold, silver and bronze medals will be given by region, based on overall ranking within an age group: grades 4 to 6; grades 7 & 8; grades 9 & 10; and grades 11 & 12.
You must submit your scores and feedback for each project using the Judging Tally Sheet and Student Feedback Submission Form. Please remember to submit a form for each of your assigned projects in each Round of judging. Round 1 scores and feedback are due no later than March 21st at 5 p.m. PST. Round 2 scores and feedback are due no later than April 9 at 5 p.m. PST.
 
Worksheets are linked above to help you keep track of your draft thoughts as you review your assigned projects. These are working documents only and should not be submitted to us.
 
We have an Ethics Subcommittee that is working with students directly to help them meet ethics requirements. You will be notified after Round 1 judging if any of your assigned projects have been deemed non-competitive due to a failure to obtain ethics approval.
 
Help with a science fair project can come in many forms, including support from a trusted adult or peer, access to resources, or financial support. Generally, students should not be marked down for guidance, encouragement or resources that aid them in completing their project.
 
A good way to think of "help" is this: Consider a basketball coach and her team. If the coach works with her team all season and the players improve, they could go on to win the championship. The players would, in this case, deserve the win. This is different than the coach entering the game and scoring the winning shot herself.
 
There are several ways to gauge whether a student worked with sufficient independence on their project. Look to see if the student is able to explain their project clearly. During the interview, ask some probing and specific questions to determine if the student is, for example, aware of why or how certain steps were taken or relevant to their project. For examples of age-appropriate interview questions, see our Judging Resources above.
 
It’s important to remember that it is okay for students in younger grades to have more direct help than students in older grades. Try to keep your expectations appropriate to the age of the student.
 
 
Yes, we have one Judging Tally Sheet for all age groups.

As you score your assigned projects and provide feedback to students, please consider what is appropriate for their age. You will find some guidance in the Judge Resources linked above. 
In the event that we receive an higher number of projects than we anticipate and are unable to schedule interviews for every project, some projects will not advance to Round 2 judging. In this case, your Round 1 scores and feedback will help the Regional Committees select which projects will advance.

Students have also been given the option to continue working on their projects from the initial project submission deadline of March 5th until a supplementary information deadline of April 1st. Round 2 judging will take into account any updates to the student's project submission folder, as well as the student interview. 

Judging Tally Sheets and Student Feedback Forms from both Rounds of judging will be essential documentation for review and comparison during team discussions and award/finalist decisions on Apr 10. This is especially true if some judges are unable to attend team discussions. Not all judges in a region/age group will see the same projects, but there will be overlap.

You will receive an email copy of each Judging Tally Sheet and Student Feedback Submission Form you submit. We encourage you to use your Round 1 scoring and feedback as an input to your Round 2 scoring and feedback for each of your assigned projects. 
No, you may be paired with a different set of judges for each of your assigned projects. By rotating judges between projects, we can ensure that there is good overlap between judges within an age category and region. This overlap will aid in team discussions and finalist selections.
 
We have collected parent/guardian consent for students to participate in the BC/Yukon Virtual Science Fair, including a Zoom interview, as part of student registration.
 
Parents, guardians or teachers are welcome to observe the interviews with judges.

We would like to respecfully remind anyone observing the interview that their purpose is to gauge the student's understanding of the project and observers should not provide any commentary or feedback during the interview process.
 All students will receive feedback from judges after the close of Round 2 judging.
Awards and finalists will be announced at a virtual celebration on April 14. The details of this celebration are coming soon.

Have Questions?

Contact us at judging@sciencefairs.ca