Two of the biggest questions that we hear during contest season have to do with papers and websites. Why are they due early and why do students have to attend the contests if they are pre-submitted? Today, we’ll answer those questions.
Why are papers and websites due early?
Students who choose to write a paper or create a website may wonder why their projects are due early but no other projects are. Because both categories are “word-heavy” judges receive the projects ahead of time to allow time for careful review[A1] . For papers, the judges get two weeks to read through all of the submitted papers. This gives them the chance to develop questions to ask in the group setting of the paper seminar and to the individual who wrote the paper. Giving the judges time ahead of the contest to read the papers also eliminates waiting around time for contestants.
Website judges also get two weeks to review projects. This time gives them the chance to explore the project on their own. They can take notes on the organization, historical accuracy, visual impact and more of your project in their own time. No one has to feel rushed. Just like with the paper judges, this pre-contest evaluation time means that they can give you more time to talk about your project and to ask you questions (although remember: the interviews are not weighed!).
Why do I have to attend the contest if my project has already been submitted?
Connecticut History Day is an academic program that helps students to build skills. Speaking with judges helps students build confidence and public speaking skills. Additionally, at contests, students can interact with other students participating in the contest. You can go and watch performances, documentaries, and explore the exhibit halls. You can make new friends and find out how other students interpreted this year’s theme. Part of History Day is experiencing the contest itself.
Along with the social aspects of the contest, participants get the chance to speak with judges about your project. At Connecticut History Day, those who write papers will have the opportunity to participate in a paper seminar. Instead of being individually interviewed, you’ll be able to sit with a group of other students in your division and talk about your process, your topic, and your research. Maybe you’ll be inspired by what you hear!
Website creators will be given the chance to discuss their projects to their judges as well. There, you can explain your choices and show off the highlights of your project. Be proud of the work that you’ve put into your project!
Why should I stay after my project has been judged?
This answer is for all participants of Connecticut History Day: the experience. For starters, staying until the end of the day means that you’ll be there to collect your medal if your project wins at the contest! It also means that you’ll get feedback from the judges that day. Make sure you stop by the registration table before you leave after the awards ceremony to collect your certificate and judges’ feedback forms. Aside from that, you don’t want to cut your experience short. Use that extra time between the end of your judging time and the awards ceremony to meet new people. Look at the other projects if you can. Enjoy being at the contest!