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The presentation, and only the presentation?

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:53 pm
by methionine
Hi all,
I was wondering if you know whether or not the judges actually read through your research paper before they watch your presentation or not? It seems like it'd be too much for each judge to actually read through everyone's paper, but if they don't read it, then what is the point of writing a research paper?
Or do they read it afterwards or what?
(note-- this is a lower-level/regional competition, not like Intel or anything of the sort.)

Thanks!
-M

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:27 pm
by jessicahua
Hi!

I have not been in a science competition; however, when science projects at my school were judged for the science fair, the judges always read the research papers.

Hope this helps!

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 6:56 pm
by methionine
Hi,

Do you know if they read the papers first or afterwards the presentation?

Thanks.

-M

Posted: Sat Jan 06, 2007 9:32 pm
by tdaly
Whether or not judges read your research paper depends on two things: 1) the fair, and 2) the judge. You're right; the judges often don't have the time to read your research paper through all the way.

Judges do, however, peruse the research paper, often looking for answers to questions that your display board may have made them think about. Your paper also shows judges how hard you worked and often reflects a deeper understanding of the scientific principles behind your project.

Moral of Story: There's no guarentee your paper will be read all the way through, but having a paper will make you stand out, especially if other projects at the school don't have papers.

P.S. If you are required to prepare an abstract/project summary, you are almost guarenteed that all the judges will read the abstract all the way through.

Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 3:59 pm
by methionine
So that means that judges also take into account how HARD you worked on your project when choosing the winner? (I'm talking at... a regular HS science fair level...)

Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 6:37 pm
by tdaly
I would agree with that statement. A project that clearly shows some effort and exertion on the student's part is, in my experience, more likely to win than one where the student just sat around and watched someone else do their project.