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Category Judges Requirements

Judges shall have a degree in Science or Engineering or the equivalent in experience. A good judge will respect each of the students he or she contacts in any way. It is also essential that students learn where the work may be insufficient. A good judge will identify these insufficiencies in a constructive way.

To preserve the integrity of the Pittsburgh Regional Science and Engineering Fair, even the appearance of prejudice must be avoided. If a judge has any relationship to or knowledge of an entrant or project, that judge must decline participation where it may influence an entrant award. Judges are required to accept this principle at registration.


Judges have the enjoyable and satisfying duty to interview students at the fair and evaluate their work. Many of the students in the Junior or Intermediate Divisions are "doing" science for the first time. Judges are in a unique position to encourage, to teach and to inspire these young people as they take early steps into science and technology. The FAQ section in this site also elaborates on events of Fair Day and is of value to new judges (and maybe even to experienced ones!)

Category Judge Chairperson
Normally, each Category is led by two chairpeople that will…
  1. Organize their judges- A list of judges and exhibits in their category is sent to each Chair shortly before the fair. At least two judges are assigned to judge each exhibit. A judge can be expected to effectively evaluate 8-10 exhibits in the time given for interviews. Chairs shall insure that each of the exhibits listed for the category has judges assigned to evaluate it.
  2. Lead their judges- Most Chair judges prefer to also judge, but it is good for the Chair to leave some free time to have a good overall view of the exhibits in the Category and also to have time to help new judges should that be necessary.
  3. Verify that all exhibits have been judged- After interviews are completed, the chair shall make a final review to make certain that each student's project has in fact been evaluated. Not much worse can happen than have a student come to the Fair and be overlooked.
  4. Lead in the selection of Category winners- When it has been determined that all entries have been evaluated, the Chair leads judges in the selection of the category winners. That practice may vary, but this Category Award Selection Procedure is recommended.
Division Chairperson
Each division, Junior, Intermediate, and Senior has a chairperson that oversees the policies and operations of this division year round and ensures quality assurance the day of the Science Fair. Each chairperson is a member of the Category Judge Steering Council that meets quarterly.

Category Judge Assignment Director
The Category Judge Assignment Director is responsible for determining the number of judges needed and assigning them. This person works closely with the Science Fair Director to determine the judging needs for event day.

Category Judge Assistant Director
The Assistant Director supports the Director in all functions and is prepared to assume all of the functions of that office should the need arise.

Category Judge Director
The Category Judge Director works in collaboration with Science Fair Director on a weekly basis. The Category Judge Director is the Chairperson of the Category Judge Steering Council. This person oversees the Category Judge process and ensures quality assurance. As well, this person directs strategic planning for all three divisions.

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