2014 Competition Guide
Display judging has always been a bit confusing since the rules introduced the name and poster components of the competition. This section is designed to help ASCE student conference hosts and their judges learn about how the process is to be conducted.
Display consists of three parts: appearance, name, and poster board.
The rules do not give any specific guidance on how to combine these three components to arrive at a final ranking of the participating bridges. There is a sheet and judging forms in the official scoring spreadsheet which are used to determine display scores and the display ranking at the national competition.
Appearance: At the national competition (where 40+ bridges are ranked) six members of the Rules Committee judge the appearance. Instead of ranking the bridges, the judges provide scores for each bridge. Each of the judges determines their favorite and least favorite bridges. The least favorite is given a score of 1 and the favorite is given a score of 10. Bridges that don't show up are given a score of zero. All other bridges are scored by each judge in relation to their favorite and least favorite--there can be ties for a given judge and decimal values are permitted. The Judge's scores are then averaged by the spreadsheet and the bridges are ranked by average score. Any ties are broken by an algorithm in the spreadsheet. In the spreadsheet, a small number is added to the bridge score to break the tie.
Name: There has been lots of discussion over the years about how to judge appropriate names for display on the bridges. Several variations have been tried and found to be unmanageable. Consequently, the only standard that has been found is the school name listed on the ASCE Student Services website (http://www.asce.org/Content.aspx?id=14843) for each chapter. The display judges must check to see that the correct name is used and that it meets the size requirements. The host should print out a listing for the use of the Display Judges. Note that ALL letters in the name are to meet the size requirement. If an entry does not appear to meet the requirement, all the judges must agree that a violation has occurred or a majority vote is taken. If it is deemed that the name requirement (size and name) is not met, then that is indicated on the display data entry sheet. Rule 126.96.36.199 states "A bridge that lacks appropriate identification will receive a very low display rating". This is automatically assessed in the spreadsheet ensuring a low ranking of the bridge within the Display judging category. Judges can alter the effect on scoring resulting from incorrect name or size by changing the weight factor in the scoresheet. Note that a weight factor of 1 causes the bridge name violation to have no impact on the scoring.
Poster Board: The rules list some required components for the poster. Judging of posters, at Nationals, is also done on a scoring (as opposed to a ranking) basis. Zero is given to a bridge that does not present a poster. A score of 1 is given to a poster that is poorly done (i.e. missing some required components and/or the work is of low quality) and an exceptional poster (i.e. has all the required components and the presented work is of high quality) gets a score of 5. Other posters receive a score between 1 and 5. Read rule 188.8.131.52 for a listing of the criteria for the poster. The scores of the judges are averaged by the spreadsheet to get a poster score for the bridge.
Combining the Scores: The rules do not give any specific guidance on how the components are to be combined. It is generally recognized, however, that the display score should not be solely based on appearance since there are two other requirements to the category. For the past few years a weighting formula has been used at nationals.
<Final Display Score> = (<Average Appearance Score> + <Average Poster Score> / <Weight Divisor>) x <if name spec met then <weight factor> else 1> + <tie breaker score>
The bridges are ranked by the spreadsheet based on both the <Display Score> and the <Final Display Score>. The <Weight Divisor> is manually manipulated so that no team's final ranking is affected by more than 10 places (out of the 40 plus bridges entered) as a result of the poster scores.
Check out the Example Display Scoring for the ASCE Polar Ice Cap Student Conference that is provided here!
Display Judging Example
At the ASCE Polar Ice Cap Student Conference (PICC) thirteen bridges are entered. Four display judges are tasked with judging the bridges.
Task Number One: Score the bridges appearance.
Task Number Two: Determine if bridge is properly identified.
Task Number Three: Poster Judging
Task Number Four: Entering the Data and Analyzing the Results
Note that, in this case, the section 184.108.40.206 penalties moved some bridges up and some down the rankings. This can be seen in the far right column. If the move is too extreme (i.e. a bridge move more than 1/4 of the way up or down the list) then the judges can alter the weight divisor until the movement on the list is restricted to a smaller value.
For the PICC, the Univ. of Snow and Ice Ridge Univ. both moved up in the rankings due to the Name and Poster scores. Polar State Univ. and the Univ. of Plain Fun fell in the rankings for the same reason.