Judge Guide

Select Our Annual Winners

Help us select the year’s top inventions and provide students feedback that will encourage them to take their ideas to the next level!


-Kathleen Brown, buddhi

I was blown away by the intelligence, curiosity and creativity of children who spent months on their projects to create everything from robot dogs to sauce savers and everything in between. Feel like a superhero to these bright young inventors!


Eligible judges must have either STEM, innovation, entrepreneurial or education related experience and be over the age of 18.

You will:

  • Evaluate student inventions using current judging rubric
  • Provide objective feedback for student inventions
  • Engage student inventors with questions or comments about their inventions

Take a look at the time commitment below:


Registration (5 min)

A registration link will be provided to you when judges’ registration opens, generally at the end of February.

Asynchronous judge webinar (~30 min)

A judge training will be offered to provide all the information you need to assess student inventions.

Online Judging (1-2 hours over the course of a week)

The judging process takes no more than a few hours and can be done at your convenience / spread over multiple sessions during the open judging window.

Live Judging Circle (~2 hours)

Meet virtually with students whose projects you evaluated, ask questions, and share feedback

Judging Timeline

Sign Up

Every year, usually around January, the Chicago Student Invention Convention seeks volunteers to serve as Invention Judges.

Complete by the end of February

Review Training Webinar

Learn about our program, how to score using the competition rubric, and best practices for delivering feedback.

Complete before the judging window opens

Review project materials

You will be assigned 5-8 student invention projects to review.

Project materials include:

  • A 4-6 minute pitch video
  • An invention logbook detailing each step of the process
  • Photos of the prototype

You will have a week to review these materials asynchronously and to prepare a few follow-up questions for students.

Complete during the week long judging window

Meet with student inventors

This will be an opportunity for you to ask clarifying questions about the projects you reviewed and to share some early feedback and encouragement with students

Takes places on a two-hour virtual event on a Saturday morning in march

Score and submit

Submit your final scores as well as nominations for projects that may fit one of our specialty awards!

Finish all scores within 24 hours of the virtual event