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As the individual seeking and organizing the Chief Judge and judges for all contests:

Before the Contest
  • Compile a master list of potential judges contacted with names, phone numbers, date and time availability.

  • Ensure sufficient copies of all current judging forms, the Judges Tiebreaking Form, timers and ballot counter forms are on hand for each contest.

  • Contact the Eligibility/Scheduling Chair as soon as possible after the entry deadline closes to confirm qualified judges for each contest are in place.

Judging Roster

Each contest an overall attempt will be made to maintain a balance between
  • male / female judges

  • novice / experienced judges

  • various / multiple areas are providing judges

  • various / different judges for each of the contests

Judge Selection for Each Contest

  • Preliminary contests – 7 judges (5 regular; one tie breaking; one chief) (where practical)

  • Final contest – 9 judges (7 regular; one tie breaking; one chief) (where practical)

  • Select one of the Judges to act as Tie Breaking Judge (use Tie Breaking form).

  • Tie Breaking form is ONLY used in the event of a tie

  • The Chief Judge is an overseer, and does NOT judge the contest

Protests Overview

Lodging a protest:
  • only contestants or judges may lodge a protest

  • a protest must be lodged prior to the announcement of the winners

  • protest MUST be lodged with directly with the Chief Judge or Contest Chair

Protesting Eligibility

Determining originality is difficult, and would NOT be considered substantially original if:
  • 4 minutes out of a 6 minute speech is devoted to quoting another person or published work, even though the quotation is properly attributed to its source

  • part of the material is taken from another source and not credited

  • the material is taken entirely from another source, credited or not

Handling a Protest

  • the Chief Judge and contest Chair call all the judges together and discuss the speech in question (or eligibility)

  • if necessary, the judges may call in the speaker

  • should a majority of judges agree, the speaker may be disqualified on the basis of originality

  • the Chief Judge and / or Chair will determine the question of eligibility

  • the Chief Judge will inform the contestant of disqualification before it is announced

  • disqualifications must be determined and announced prior to the affected contest adjournment

  • all decisions of the judges are final

The Date of the Contest
Confirm that all judges/timers/counters are in attendance.

Hold a pre-contest briefing with judges:
  • Stress the need for objectivity and the need to avoid bias

  • Contest judges have an obligation to the contestants, the audience, and themselves

  • Good judges are accurate, fair, trustworthy, knowledgeable and good listeners

  • Review how to complete the ballot

  • Explain how to use the "folding method" on the ballots

  • Advise judges to tear off ballot IN ADVANCE

  • Remind judges how important it is to sign the final judging form

  • Remind judges it is their responsibility to pick a winner

  • Suggest judges sit throughout the audience, not all in one spot and away from lights

  • Explain the criteria for a protest
Hold a pre-contest briefing with the timers:
  • Ensure timers are familiar with the timing devices and stop watches

  • Determine who will time and who will action the lights

  • Explain completion of the "timers sheet"

  • Remind Timers not to make any indication to any speakers should they be close to going over time
Hold a pre-contest briefing with the ballot counters:
  • Advise counters to stand at the back of the room once the final speaker has finished

  • Watch for judges to raise their hands indicating they have completed their ballots

  • Collect ballots from all judges and leave the room with the Chief Judge

  • Complete the ballot form – one counter writes, the other counters read out the decisions of each of the judges. then repeat this process reversing the counter who reads the ballots.

During the Contest

  • Oversee all aspects of the Judging and collection of ballots.

 Revised October 2016

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