Speech Adjudicator (Judge) Training

If you had an account on our website prior to fall 2018, you must sign up for a new account, which you can do by following one of the green buttons below to enroll.

Initial (First Time) Certification

Who:  New or experienced coaches and/or adjudicators (judges) can gain certification through this training program. If your certification lapsed 10+ years ago, you should take this course.

How it works: You enroll in an online course with a modest fee of $38; it takes about 2 hours to complete. After successful completion, you will register for an in-person, 3-hour workshop, where a trainer will guide you through best practices of writing effective evaluations. At the end of the workshop, you will independently write an evaluation of a performance, which will be assessed for quality constructive and instructive feedback.

Workshop: Enroll and complete the online course at least a week ahead of a workshop you wish to attend; you must register through the online course; walk-ins are not allowed.  We require at least 3 hours of in-person attendance; if the timeframe doesn’t work or you will be delayed in arriving, please find a different workshop.

Term of Certification & Renewal

Term:  Certification terms last three school years (inclusive of the one in which certification took place). Individuals whose certification expired/lapsed within 10 years may return for renewal certification.

Recertification:  The state office emails adjudicators when certification is due for renewal. Following successful completion of a “refresher” online course (with about 30 minutes of tutorials outlining recent changes in evaluation sheets and reiterating adjudication expectations based on those new sheets), receipt of $6 fee, and assessment (online completion of evaluation of a video student speech), adjudicators are notified to download a digital certificate as proof of renewal (and their status is updated in the online roster).

Certification Status

The certification roster is available at the link below. Certifications expire September 30, and the renewal course may be taken between October-early February.

Speech Adjudicator FAQs

How many Speech adjudicators am I required to have?

Generally speaking, contests ask for one adjudicator for every five entries, or fraction thereof. Some contests require fewer or more. This means that if a school has 7 entries, it should bring two adjudicators. Some contests will allow schools to pay a fee for uncovered adjudicators, not because they have extras they can hire for a school, but to incentivize schools to bring their own adjudicators. It is a burden on any host when schools do not provide all of the adjudicators they are expected to.  The State Festival requires one adjudicator for 1-8 entries, two adjudicators for 9-19 entries, and three adjudicators for 20-25 entries.

How do I get certified to adjudicate (judge) Speech contests?

You will enroll in an online course that takes about 2 hours, followed by a 3-hour in-person workshop. The initial certification fee is $38 and lasts 3 years, at which point you will be able to renew. To learn more, visit our adjudication page.

Can I volunteer to host a workshop?

Please contact your district chair. To keep costs down, up to two workshops may be scheduled per district, but are contingent on availability of a trainer. Weeknight  workshops are scheduled between 4:30/5:00 – 7:30/8:00 pm, and Saturday workshops are scheduled from 9am-12 Noon. Workshops should be centrally located in an area, so they are more easily accessible to the greatest population. We will not schedule workshops during major break periods (the end of December), and will only schedule workshops over the summer if there is significant demonstrated need (we tried to offer several in 2018, and all but one were cancelled for lack of signups).

Are there online workshops?

We have attempted online workshops in the past, but participants were not interactive, and bandwidth for most people is not powerful enough to stream both live video of participants, as well as prerecorded video. Still, if existing workshops are cancelled, or there are other mitigating circumstances, a virtual alternative may be scheduled.

How do I renew certification to adjudicate (judge) Speech contests?

You will enroll in an online course that takes about 30 minutes, plus evaluating a student presentation. Upon receipt of the $6 recertification fee and successful completion of the course and evaluation, certification will be renewed. To learn more, visit our adjudication page.

My speech adjudicator certification lapsed. Which course do I enroll in?

If your certification lapsed within the past 10 years, you may enroll in the Renewal course. If it was more than 10 years, please enroll in the Initial Training course.

How do I register a complaint about an adjudicator?

We now have an online complaint form that can be accessed from the Speech Contests or the Theatre Contests pages.

Do you have a list of descriptive words/phrases adjudicators can use?

See FAQs at the bottom of the page (left) for common inquiries about certification, including our new protocol (2018) for volunteering, scheduling, and holding workshops. Click the “My Account” button if you’ve already enrolled in a course this fall.

Upcoming Workshops

Nothing from February 16, 2019 to February 16, 2020.