Qualifying Concern

I was not sure where to post my concern so I posted it here. It has come to my attention that, at least in my region, the winners of the event do not qualify for the World Championship. Only the Excellence award winner gets to qualify and usually the winners of the event do not get this award. This makes it more difficult for good teams to qualify for worlds even though they win at the events they go to. I was wondering if it is possible to give qualifying spots for winners of the events in Florida, my region, so that we don’t have to travel to other states to qualify. That would defeat the whole purpose of having a regional. Please notify me if anything could be done to help the situation and thank you for you attention.

I’ve moved this thread out of the Official Q&A, as the Q&A is only for game/robot related questions. I’ve also brought this thread to the attention of the RECF, so they can help address your situation.

I believe you are quite mistaken about WC qualifying spots in Florida. There are two early events that have one award (the Excellence award) and all the others have 3 spots. FL received fewer spots than anticipated and we tried to allocate as many spots as possible so that every event is a qualifier.

Thank you Karthik.

I checked all the events near Florida and all of them said that only the excellence award qualifies for Worlds. If you don’t mind notifying me of the tournaments that qualifies the winners of the events also I would be very greatful.

I am very confused about qualifying spots this year. It seems like the VEX community is being left in the dark about what events get qualifying spots. In Maryland EVERY event only qualifies the Excellence winner. Unless of course some of the event posting are accurate and other spots will be added. Why is it not more direct and obvious who has a chance of qualifying?


Many of the events in Maryland are only qualifying the Excellence Award, yes. We were hoping to get a few more spots for our October tournament, the Northwest Maryland VEX Robotics Competition, but extra spots are going towards the Bionic Bayhawks VEX Robotics World Qualifier, as well as our March tournament, the VEX Robotics Mid-Atlantic Championship. Please note that both of those claim “at this event, only the Excellence Award Winner will qualify for the 2012 VEX World Championship.” I believe that this is a RobotEvents website “problem” in that it perhaps does not show the number that will qualify until the appropriate number of teams register for that tournament(?). If you check the Bionic Bayhawks Qualifier, in the description it even says “we are aware that our description says we are an Excellence-only competition. Don’t let that scare you. We have been assured 4+ World Championship slots by RECF, but only if enough teams register!!


This is BY FAR the best explanation I have heard. I think giving a detailed explanation like this helps people out a lot.

Some of your questions also addressed in this thread: https://vexforum.com/t/worlds-slots-question/22095/1

This is a very good explanation of the qualification system. However, I have some comments that I feel must be said:

To Teams: Like the quoted post says, the system is not jury-rigged against your team’s chances of qualifying for worlds. A larger number of teams competing for the same number of spots means that it will be harder to qualify this year. But instead of complaining to the RECF about how you never win the excellence award, the surest way to get in is to raise the bar on your own team to the point where you are an excellence-award-winning team.

To RECF: There are some improvements that could be made to the system. The HS world championship has 400 slots, but there are also 160 MS spots to account for. From what I have seen, many high-level HS teams lock the younger teams out of the competition, leaving a large number of middle school teams unqualified. When a middle school team does qualify, it eats up a spot that I assume was allocated for the HS world championship. Perhaps tournaments should have specific slots for the different age groups, so that the two groups of teams are not eating each other’s WC slots.

Thanks Chuck… this is definitely one of the most concise and clear explanation for all.

In fact, I am against the idea of keep expanding the number of teams for Worlds… this will only dilute the quality.
And, making it to the Worlds should be seen as a prestige and reward. By expanding it, eventually, the Worlds might just end up as just-another-competition.

The current model is definitely one of the simplest forms of distribution of slots.
Otherwise, RECF can consider including a “ranking” component for each region/country.
The ranking will be based on their previous performance in the Worlds.
And this ranking component will play a part in deciding the number of teams going for the next World as well.

E.g. NZ teams won 10 (just a random number for illustration) awards. And this made them the “most awarded” region - so they will have 1 or 2 more slots (than their usual allocation) for the next World.

But of course, this method will just add on to the muddle that we are already in…

[FONT=Verdana]I have had some of the same concerns mentioned here for the past 3-4 years in that with the growth of VEX, there was no way to maintain the initial level of qualifying teams for the world championships. On the other hand, as an EP and also a past team coach and mentor, I also have some concerns that only the Excellence award winner qualifies for the championship at some events. What I see happening is that some EP’s will begin to host only host level 1 events if they cannot qualify more than the excellence award winner. Most of the events in my region are level 2, 3 or 4 events which mean 24-59 participants and the expectation from those participants that 3-5 teams will qualify. What would make more sense for those events in our region at least, is to allow the EP’s to determine who qualifies based on an established hierarchy. [/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana] [/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana]For example, if my region cannot sustain an average of 3 qualifying spots for teams across all the events, but we can sustain 2. What makes more sense is to advance the excellence award winner and the captain of the winning alliance. This would be in lieu of the excellence winner at one event, and Excellence and 2 winning alliance partners at another event. For teams that qualify multiple times because they competed in 2 or more events, those spots should also be allocated to the next deserving team based on the established hierarchy. Maybe the partner of the winning alliance can now qualify.[/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana] [/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana]During the presentation I gave at our season kickoff event, I pointed out to teams, coaches and parents that just winning matches does not mean you qualify for the world championship. They must now read through all the various awards criteria with special focus on the Excellence award…. And BE… all those things described in order to have a shot. Since this is a judged award, you have to wow the judges on and off the field.[/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana] [/FONT]
[FONT=Verdana]For most of us EP’s I believe the biggest frustration is the lack of clarity on how qualifying spots were assigned to events and that this was not adequately addressed early on in the season.[/FONT]

Thanks for all your replies Chuck. I think some of the teams just wanted clarification, myself included. It should be clear now that you can’t expect anything to stay the same in such a fast-expanding program like VEX. The changes in the system for this year will just push teams to work even harder to qualify for Worlds and the skill level at Worlds will only increase, which will be great for VEX as a whole.

It won’t be as simple as winning the first tournament of the year to qualify, just like the changes in skills rankings last year didn’t let teams qualify by running the only autonomous in the tournament for programming skills. I hope we can put this issue behind us and focus on making our designs truly excellent.

I actually really like this. It’s better to win awards towards the end of the season then right at the beginning because you know you deserved it. At the beginning of the season, teams are still working on their designs. It’s not all that hard to win in the first few competitions.

We are working on something similar in Indiana with a true State Championship that you have to earn your way to attend. Some world qualifying slots would be allocated to state qualifying tournaments (Excellence Award winner) and the bulk of the world qualifying slots being allocated to the State Championship tournament.

I’m not sure we’ll have everything in place for this year, but it sounds like there are several areas of the U.S. heading in the same general direction. Maybe the RECF will formalize something like this for next season.


The problem with that kind of system is, not all teams have the budget or time to attend multiple stages of competition. VEX staff on here have stated that one thing about VEX that is better than FIRST is that you can qualify for Worlds directly from a regional tournament. That way, if your team has limited budget options, you can make it to worlds without piling the registration, travel, and other costs of States and Nationals on top of the heavy costs to get to Worlds.

Also, to qualify a proportional number of teams from Nationals, Nationals would have to be much larger than it is, and have many more WC qualifying spots. If US nationals were the only source of US qualifying spots to Worlds, and it stayed the same size it is now, nearly half of the teams at the event would qualify for Worlds. And many of those teams wouldn’t be able to afford the trip to Anaheim, since they spent their travel budgets going to States and Nationals.


Thank you for such a clear explanation.

and Jordan,

We will see you at Northwest, Bionic Bayhawk and your VMAC. We are getting the hang of the Maryland Circuit.

I feel like this just isn’t realistic at the rate that VEX is growing. In the end, this should be a positive signal about VEX. The level of competition at Worlds will increase as will the level of competition at national, state and regional competitions. In this way, Nationals will be as intense as Worlds currently is, State competitions will be as intense as Nationals and so on.

Money will always be an issue, but how VEX is trying to organize it makes the most sense. I think this will just make the prospect of Worlds even more inviting as it gets more selective. Teams will have to put in a lot of work in fundraising as well as upping the level of their designs to really reach the top level of competition.

Yeah I agree with this. Who has ever been to a meet and a 3rd pick alliance winner was a robot that didn’t do anything?? And then they went to Worlds. This system is yes, MUCH more challenging, but it makes the teams work harder, which is why we’ve decided to go into quadrupedal overdrive to get everything perfect for our first meet. I’m looking forward to this season of new qualifications.

I would have to agree to this. I feel like money shouldn’t be a deciding factor on whether a team can qualify for worlds or not. I realize it will always play some sort of factor, but it should be kept to a minimum.

That is very true as well. Perhaps a rule that only the picking team can qualify for worlds (this would prevent team #1 from picking #2. #3 picking #4, ect, too)

EDIT: I’m not against the tiered system, I just think that there just needs to be considerations for all vex teams to have the opportunity to qualify.

I heard talk of a national tournament. IS there such a tournament?

How does one qualify for Nationals? What is the benefit to going to National.