Judging Procedures and Criteria

Judging procedure

Volunteer judges for the event are pooled primarily from the academic departments of Biology, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Mathematics and Computer Science, and Teacher Education. Our judging teams include TWU faculty, staff, graduate and undergraduate students. Projects are judged based on a variety of points, including originality of question, hypothesis, procedure, organization, investigation trials, analysis, evaluation, conclusion and presentation.

  1. The judges will first use the criteria and scoring rubric listed below to evaluate each entry. Five points are possible in each category with a maximum of 35 points possible overall.
  2. Top scoring projects will then be evaluated by a judging pool comprised of each session's faculty members and team leaders. 1st, 2nd, and Best in Class awards will be given based on group consensus after all top scoring projects have been carefully reviewed.

Download a sample Science Fair judging rubric (pdf).

Judging criteria

Originality of Question

Exhibits should show originality of research/unique question. Weight will be given to ingenious use of materials, unique perspective or originality of approach.


An exhibit will be judged on how the Scientific Method* is used and how easy it is to follow. The sequence should capture and exhibit all observations, data collections, and changes to the project as well as disclose whether a control was used. *Scientific Method: question, hypothesis, investigation/testing, analysis, and evaluation/conclusion.

Investigation Trials

Exhibit will be judged on how many times the experiment was performed and the adequacy of the sample size.


Data will be judged on how clearly it is presented and the relationship between the data and the hypothesis/question.


An exhibit should show that a logical conclusion has been drawn from the data collected, and that the data answers the hypothesis/question, and/or raises a new hypothesis/question.


Exhibit displays well organized data and clear/accurate use of text/charts/graphs. Text within the project is legible with few to no spelling errors.

Page last updated 4:34 PM, May 1, 2017