Updated Judging Rubrics

Logo_portraitWe’re just one month away from opening submissions for the 2015 Ocean 180 Video Challenge! As the submission period for scientists inches closer and closer, we hope you’re already hard at work scheming up your entry for this year.

For those who might be starting an Ocean 180 submission (or even just considering it), it’s helpful to know how we wind up with our winners. You already know we’re looking for the scientists who best communicate their their research, but what exactly does that mean? What are our judges looking for in each entry?

To help you prepare your video abstract, our team has just released the judging rubrics our Wave 1 and Wave 2 judges will be using to select the finalists and winners. Although similar to last year’s judging rubrics, some criteria have changed slightly. Both rubrics contain elements our judges are looking for and we encourage you to use them to help guide the development of your video abstract. Remember, your entry must be based on a recent peer-reviewed ocean science publication!

Who are the Wave 1 and Wave 2 judges?

Ocean 180 uses a 2-tiered judging system to select the winners. First, all entries are screened by a team of science and communication experts. These are our Wave 1 judges. Using a standardized rubric, they evaluate each entry and submit their scores and comments. These scores are used to determine the top 10 entries, known as Ocean 180 finalists.

Once selected, the 10 finalists are sent around the world and into the classrooms of middle school students. These students are the Wave 2 judges and have a similar version of the Wave 1 rubric to use (available here). Students vote as a class, with each registered classroom allowed to cast votes for their top 3 entries.

These students have the final votes in selecting the Ocean 180 winners, and they take their job as judges seriously. Very seriously. A few weeks ago, we shared a summary of comments from student judges last year. In reviewing their critiques and their voting selections, it’s clear that students are looking for the entry that not only explains the research, but inspires, educates, and excites them. Certainly a tough crowd!

Just one month into registration and over 9,000 middle school students in 14 countries have registered to join our Wave 2 judges. With 3 more months of registration to go, this year’s finalists should expect a truly global audience.

Best of luck to all the ocean scientists preparing their entry for this year’s Challenge! Please feel free to contact info@ocean180.org with any questions about submissions or the judging process.


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