The questions in each subject area have been reviewed by at least two individuals with subject expertise to eliminate erroneous or ambiguous questions. In addition, we have selected a multiple-choice format for many of our questions. This eliminates more than one correct answer (it’s either one of our answers or the response is wrong). The student’s answer to a short answer question must have the same meaning as the correct one on the page. It is up to you to decide if the answer given is acceptable or not.
One responsibility as an NOSB SCIENCE JUDGE is to resolve question challenges. The rules regarding challenges are as follows:
- Only players (not the audience, coach, or alternate) may challenge a Moderator’s ruling on an answer. The challenge must come before the Moderator begins the next toss-up or bonus question at which time the Moderator will request the timekeeper to stop the clock
- If the challenged question is in your field or that of the Moderator or other competition official in the room, you should resolve the challenge without outside assistance, if at all possible.
- If a challenge arises which is outside the fields of the officials in your room OR a student challenges the ruling a second time, please go to the Judges’ Appeals Room to discuss the challenge. The Appeals Room should have someone in each of the sciences who can resolve the issue. Once you report a decision back in the game room, that decision is final.
- Should you feel that time was lost as a result of a challenge that interrupted the round (5, 10, or 15 seconds, for example), check with the Moderator and Rules Judge and ask that time be added back onto the clock before resuming the competition. Be certain to announce that you are “correcting” the time because time was lost due to the challenge so that all participants understand what is happening.
- There are no challenges on Team Challenge Questions.
Other responsibilities include:
1. Ensuring that the Moderator has read each question correctly. You will be given a packet of questions identical to those of the Moderator. As the Moderator reads a question, please follow along to make sure the question is read correctly and that all words are pronounced correctly. Correct the pronunciation immediately if a word is mispronounced.
2. Clearing the buzzer system before the next toss-up question. Leave the buzzer system on (i.e. locked out) between toss-up and bonus questions, so an opposing team does not buzz in by accident.
3. Explaining Team Challenge Questions. At the end of the first half of the round, the completed Team Challenge Questions are taken to the Judges’ Appeals Room to be graded, and the teams get a two minute break. After the break, you briefly explain the answers to the two Team Challenge Questions to everyone in the room. When the graded questions are brought back to the room you announce the scores for each team and question before starting the second half of the round.
4. Issuing warnings- any competition official that feels a situation demands a warning due to poor behavior during a competition match will request that the game clock be stopped. The officials will then collectively make a decision to either issue a warning or not. Warnings are issued by the rules judge and may be given to individual players, an entire team competing, or to members of the audience (including coaches).