Judging hints for the World Championship

I will be facilitating a workshop again this year on “Warm Up to Judging at World Championship” as part of a scrimmage for Championship-bound teams in the Mid-Atlantic area. I have a ppt filled with best practices, and past workshops have included great suggestions from teams.

I’m a big believer in preparing for judging, just like spending practice time driving your robot.

Post one suggestion from your judging lessons learned from past Championships to pass on, and I will include it in the presentation.

Sorry to be off topic but do you mind sharing this power point?

Do you think it would be helpful to share after March 30?

If so, I will need to spend a bit of time on the format - it is not set up right now to be a stand alone.

I also need to think about how to distribute it. Probably by email to specific requests.

Do you have a hint to share?

For WC-bound teams that are near central Maryland, here is the link to the scrimmage registration if you would like to attend:


No cost to attend, but please only sign up if you are certain you will come.

It will be a day of playing many matches. When you are ready to play, stand in line. We will load the field 4 teams at a time, and get in as many matches as possible during the day. The goal is to gain drive experience against other teams. We will score matches so teams know how they did in a match, but we will not be tracking rankings. We will have no declared winners. Everyone wins with the experience they will gain.

Why not post it here on the forum? You can put it in a zip and attach the file.

This is a presentation on shared lessons learned and how the students can be great ambassadors for their team, together with info on the various awards.

I was able to update for this year and check the info with a RECF rep, but this ppt is an unofficial look and contains my opinions.

It is meant to be used while interacting with a room full of students, parents and mentors.

But since there seems to be interest in the topic I will try to make it more friendly to distributing and will include a notes section.

The workshops are on March 30, 2013.
Starting March 31 I will distribute to anyone who requests.

Send me an email anytime to get on the distribution list: VEX.stuff@gmail.com
** Put “ppt” in the subject line.**

**Now back to the topic: **Any hints to share?

I have a hint that one of our team parents got from Judges at the 2012 WC (and I think she herself was a judge in the 2010 WC). Apparently judges like to see each team member have their own engineering notebook, rather than one for the whole team. This is so they can see that every member of the team is learning and documenting their experience on the team, rather than just one or two powerhouse members doing all the work, helped slightly by several mindless minions.

This method has won our team 2 Design Awards at regional tournaments (despite some sad tournament performance), so it definitely won’t hurt to try it.

Prepare to adapt to your judges.
Our second vex competition for example, we had a presentation planned to discuss topics before questions came. However, the judges were very interactive and went straight to questions. Our Last vex competition however the judges were new, less interactive. As a result we had to offer out ideas we would normally mention and intentionally end responses broadly to spark another question from a judge or a comment from another team member.

Do you think this was related to which trophies were being given out at each event, or just because they were new to judging?

ps. I’ve received some really polite emails from teams, talking about wanting to learn more. Kudos!

A time saver in the interview we have used is to shake the judges hand and tell them your name, how many years you have been in robotics/Vex, and your role on the team (if you have one). This eliminates the first three questions that are usually asked by the judges saving about thirty seconds which could be crucial if you have a lot of things to accomplish in your interview.
Another thing to do is dabble into everything your team does and not just focus on one component unless it is at worlds and you are a specific award interview.
This helps to get the judges interested and want to come to your table because they could hear something intriguing and come to find out more about it such as a specific way you use a sensor or a unique way of designing your robot.

I’m updating my slides. Last chance to offer any advice to be included.

Thanks to all the teams who participated today! Presentation sent to all who requested. I hope the teams have a great time at the Championship.

Sent out another wave of these from requests received since April 2.
Heading out to another robotics events for the next 4 days and will be off email.
If there are any other requests, will go out on April 15.

I would like to see it!

Same here, bu it looked like I waited too long to ask. If anyone can email a copy to tomead@yahoo.com I would really appreciate it!

Sorry, I have requested that I am the only one to distribute.

But as I previously posted:

"Starting March 31 I will distribute to anyone who requests.

Send me an email anytime to get on the distribution list: VEX.stuff@gmail.com
Put “ppt” in the subject line."