August 15th Guide to Judging Update

According to the Guide to Judging, there are four potential updates for this season: June 15th, August 15th, December 15th, and April 15th. When the guide is updated, a set of “release changes” will be added, like what was done for the June 15th update.

Notice how the Guide says This document may be updated, which indicates that the update does not have to occur. For any normal update, it not happening would not be a cause for concern, as there would be no previous indication (confirmation) that the Guide to Judging would be receiving an update.

However, in this Q&A, the Competition Judging Committee (CJC) confirmed that the Guide to Judging would receive an update on August 15th.

(Emphasis mine).

Despite this, no update was released yesterday, to the dismay of those who were anticipating it.

My question is, was there supposed to be an update? If not, why did the CJC mention (confirm) it in their Q&A response? And, if the update truly was not going to happen, then where (and when) will we be able to see the new innovate award submission criteria and form. As a judge, it is imperative that we are able to see this before the first qualifier events start to happen so that we can be prepared to evaluate submissions as the CJC (and RECF) wants us to.


There will be one according to @ryanosweiler

Having said this, the CJC will be revisiting this and adding clarifying language in the next Guide to Judging update (later in August) around this issue. Our hope and desire is that single member teams are given the ability to demonstrate the presence of communication, collaboration, and teamwork skills and be judged fairly for it.

I would give grace on timing, when it is ready accounting for feedback from community recently, it will be released.


This will be delayed given recent discussions that have taken place. Careful discussion and discernment is important to factor into this. To @lacsap 's point, it will be released when ready.


Hi Ryan,

I am the person who posted the original Q&A. I have nothing to say that hasn’t been said already, just wanted to reach out to thank you for your communication with the VEX community!


Appreciate that-thanks!


We are still waiting for this update. This is ridiculous. You have had months to get this update out and I get you’ve had a lot going on recently but you need to understand my massive frustration at this point. Please get it together.


Ryan made it clear that this update would be

Also, of all the things you could be “massively frustrated” about, is this really the right one? The date this update comes out will have almost no impact on you whatsoever.

Have some respect.


Yes, he made it clear it was delayed, but how many things do they need to delay? VEXU game manual release, game manual updates, etc. It seems like a lot of their issues could be fixed by being proactive and being intent about meeting these deadlines.

It 100000% impacts me and my team and everyone as it has a huge impact on how the game and notebooks are judged and could have an impact on how the notebook needs to be written. What if it has an impact on the rubric like the last one? What if there is an award change like the last one? We already know that the innovate award submission would be clarified, and what if we need to be working on this now to be ready for upcoming compeitions?

The whole guide to judging system is flawed, but that’s for another day. I dont just speak for myself when I express my frustration.

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Sorry you are having a difficult time - I would suggest you take a look at the RECF Code of Conduct and ask yourself if your posts are representative of your team/organization way conducting itself in general.

In particular:

  • Exhibit maturity and professionalism when dealing with difficult and stressful situations

Even without the latest update to the Guide to Judging, your team can design, build, program, test, and compete fully this season, and documenting this requires no special new insight to the update of the Guide to Judging.

What the update will address is clarify process for handling one student teams, Excellence Criteria, and Innovate Criteria. In addition, expect to see checklists for judges for critical awards.

The delay is due to a healthy discussion between forum members about single member teams. I am glad the RECF has taken into consideration the many feedback from forum members on this issue, and wishes to incorporate them carefully.

If you have specifics about what missing info is causing your team not to make progress, let us know. It is likely I am missing something here.


I do get this, but from someone who is in VIQC, these delays are just making me (and my org) more upset. I know CJC are different comities, but from a participants view, there seems to be a lot of people knocking into us. There is only so much maturity and professionalism you can expect of a 5-14 year old kid, when the people in charge of our programs admit that one of our biggest issues with the program is not going to be fixed, it makes it a lot harder to hold punches. Being told that you as a participant means nothing, and that they are going to attack the single member teams, something that no one wanted, that no one thought that should have happened just proves this point even more. Personally I would like to see CJC, GDC, etc, fix their student centered policy. But that’s never going to happen, even RECF has admitted that. So yes, should we be acting with professionalism and maturity. Of course we should, but even some of the posts in this thread have already been showing a lack of that. It is starting to seem from VIQC side, the community and people, are starting to be seen as only dollar signs, if you shovel enough money to RECF as a country, you can’t be touched by student centered, ( and may of VIQC’s other rules) even at worlds. No care that is effecting student’s self worth. I need to make a post calling this out, and I will.

NOPE! I would like to debunk this, this is something totally reasonable to get upset over. Personally, I would not build, code or program. Especially as a single person team. I hate to say it, in this day and age, us as competitors have Choice. I hate to say it, FIRST exists, and I’m not pushing anyone to go over there, I prefer VEX to FIRST. But if I were a competitor that was getting called out specifically, and put at a disadvantage, I might have to switch.

So let’s bring us to if we do switch, we still have to ORDER parts, that takes time. I’m not saying this is the case, I don’t believe they would do this. But from the perspective of some of these single person teams, that already had this injustice happen, how could they not have a thought in the back of their mind that they where holding this decision to keep them in the ecosystem, if they hold this until it is too late to order parts, the disadvantage of switching and waiting part shipping times are outweighing the single team penalty. We sell out of brains frequently, so what’s the chance that the CJC could wait out until you can no longer order the brains. (Im not saying they would, I hope they wouldn’t, but stuff like this has happened before, and for the people who just got singled out and delt a disadvantage, I don’t blame them for thinking this)

I do think that community feedback is important, but there has to be a better way to implement community feedback. You can’t just push back all of your deadlines because the community does not like your decisions. I really hope all of the comities become more transparent, I doubt this single member team thing came up and got shipped in 1 meeting, maybe asking coaches, or EP’s, or anyone that interacts with these students on a daily basis, or heck, post on the forum and have the people it directly affects contribute to the conversation. Not that you always have to go with what the community says, but it will make this program so much better.


(Probably my only post on this thread, if you have a direct comment on what I said and want me to respond ping me.)

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I was hoping to keep quiet on this matter (as I have no bone in this issue).

I may not know the full situation, but I do agree with @2775Josh .
And I am not sure how do your team goes about your robot designs, etc. But I don’t see any of my teams using the judging criteria for awards as the reference on how they should design their robots.
eg. How do the policy governing single-member team affects the decision on whether to use catapult or puncher?

I am getting lost in this logic.

Or maybe my teams have not been aspiring high enough (in terms of winning awards) - when we participate in VRC and when we design our robots, we do it because we enjoy the game and we want to win matches, and not because we want to win some judged awards (which has always been subjective in nature).
So maybe all along my teams’ approach towards robot designs have been faulty…


Alright, I’m going back on what I said and am responding, I wanted to clear some of this up. The whole idea is not that the policy will change how you play the game, but it will change if you play the game. It all depends on how you want to play the game given this disadvantage. If you are working on a project and it is better than the competitors, fits all the criteria, and then your boss gives you no compensation for your time, and picks a worse team of people for the job, just because they had more people on the team, I would be a bit upset. Winning is nice and all, but such a deliberate loss for something out of your control seems harsh at best, and will really knock on some of these kid’s self-esteem.

That might not be the case but for some teams, and some places, sponsors might pull out from year to year if you are performing poorly, as a business owner, I would much rather sponsor a team that is making it to states and worlds, compared to one that is only making it to regionals.

We all like to say it is not about who wins and loses, it’s about what’s learned along the way. But in the real world, it’s not quite like that. My teams have lost sponsors from not going to States. For some teams if they don’t come up with something their organization will stop there.